Many people have a love/hate relationship with social media. We all have a friend or relative that seems to spend every waking moment on Facebook or they send dozens of tweets per day from their Twitter account. Then, there are others who still refuse to open a profile because of the frivolity of it all. “Why do I care what someone had for their breakfast?” is often the battle cry when someone defends their position of not joining the social media club. We don’t necessarily blame them either. Social media can be a huge time waster. However, if you’re a business owner, you really should have a Facebook Fan Page.
Even with all of its quirks and rule changes, there’s no denying the power of Facebook. It’s the 800lb. gorilla of social media. Like it or not, (and plenty of people don’t like Facebook’s practices) its influence cannot be denied. One of the primary benefits of having a Page is the ability to boost your search engine ranking. Facebook is currently the second most popular website behind Google and has about 600 million active users. A Facebook Page can give your brand greater visibility and puts your business in front of millions of potential customers. Plus, setting up a Facebook Page is free. A Page will require work on your part. It’s not something you can set and forget, but the payoffs are worth it.
Facebook Pages resemble profile pages, but are for organizations and businesses to broadcast information through the vast Facebook universe. This information can be seen by people who choose to connect with you (in other words, people who ‘Like’ your Page). Unlike a normal profile, Pages can be enhanced with applications to give your business a stronger identity and individual presence.
Even if you aren’t ready to fully create your Page yet, you should claim the name so someone else can’t use it, assuming the name is still available. Once you reach 25 ‘Likes’, you can name your Page so no one else c can take the name from you.
Facebook Pages are relatively easy to set up. A Page can be created here and managed through your personal account. Only an authorized representative is permitted to create a Page. Once you’ve set up your new Page, click on ‘Edit Page’ and go to ‘Manage Permissions’. Here you can allow only admins to see the Page while you’re working on it. This way, fans can’t see the Page until you’re ready for its debut.
Before you actually build your Facebook Page, spend some time browsing other Pages similar to your business. You can learn what they’re doing well and what they’re doing poorly by watching their Page closely for a few weeks. Are they connecting with their fans? How often do they post status updates? What type of landing page (if any) do they have? What types of tabs have they created? You don’t necessarily want to copy all their ideas verbatim, but if you see a trend with most of the Pages, it probably means they’re getting results.
There are a lot of places that have tutorials about building tabs for your Pages. A Google search will no doubt yield you numerous tutorials. We also like The Social Media Guide’s article on the top Facebook apps for businesses.
Once your Page is created, you can start using it as a promotional tool. As the title of this article states however - simply telling visitors to "Like" your page just isn't enough. There has to be a compelling reason why they should keep coming back. That being said, here are a few tips to help your Page stand out from the competition…
Facebook has a ‘Suggest to Friends’ button you can use to promote to your profile friends. Although it’s less effective than it used to be (Facebook wants you to buy ads now – see below), it’s still worth doing and only takes a few minutes.
Be sure to only suggest to friends that would have an interest in your Page. It can be annoying to friends and family members to ‘Like’ your Page if not a part of your targeted demographics.
If you want more ‘Likes’, you can run a Facebook Ad. Ads are relatively inexpensive and can get you a lot of targeted fans if they are run correctly. You should test a number of ads and see which ones perform the best.
A word of warning: Some individuals have been having trouble lately with Facebook trying to re start ad campaigns that admins have stopped or overcharging people for ads. There is an advantage in placing your ads with a company that specializes in handling Facebook ads for clients as they have more clout with Facebook than individuals.
It’s important not to let your Page become stagnant. Frequent updates keep your fans coming back for more, plus it improves your EdgeRank. A good mixture of photos, videos and web links will do more to increase views than standard status updates. Make sure your content is focused on the demographics of the fan base you want to build.
Engage your users by asking them questions and responding to others’ comments. Use a personable, friendly tone to encourage others to chime in on discussions. Don’t shy away from controversy either, it prompts further debate, which in turn translates into additional traffic for your posts.
People love to win, even if it’s just recognition. Contests are a fun way for users to interact with your Page and keep them from coming back.
Give Out Coupons or Offers
Reward people who ‘Like’ your Facebook Page by giving out special coupons and offers for your fans. This can attract others to ‘Like’ your Page to take advantage of these offers.
Promote Your Page
Ask people to ‘Like’ your Page on your email signature, website, blog, flyers, business cards, etc. You’d be surprised how many potential customers will check out your Page because they see it listed on your communications.
If you would like to know more how a Facebook Page can help grow your business, please contact one of our friendly Captivation representatives today. Let us show you how we can help you create a winning marketing strategy that includes the powerful medium of social media.