Everywhere you turn these days, you hear people talking about Facebook and other social media website such as Twitter, LinkedIn, YouTube, Flickr, Pinterest, etc. But you may be wondering how you can use these sites to promote your business.
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Materials Facebook Business Page
You may have heard that in order to succeed in business these days, you need to set up a Facebook business page. So you finally sat down and figured out how to do it. You've uploaded the cover picture and profile photo and have even posted a few comments. And now you are waiting for people to arrive and start interacting with you. But it’s not happening. Now what?
It’s easier than you think. All you need to do is get interested in other people.
That’s a lesson I learnt from my 11 year old, who joined Instagram (photo sharing mobile application). He started “Liking” everyone else’s photos and commenting on their pictures and within a few days he had over 150 followers.
After all social media is about being social and talking to people online. Stop waiting for others to come to you and start the conversation yourself.
But before you get out there, make sure your Facebook page is properly set up:
1. The large image at the top of the page, also known as cover photo should be used for branding. Show photos of your products and outline benefits of using your products and services.
2. The small profile photo should be your logo. This way, every time you comment, your logo will show up next to the post.
3. Fill out all the information about your business under “Edit Page”
Use the Facebook Cover Photo to Outline What Your Business Is All About
When your own Facebook page is in order, one of the first things you may want to do is join Facebook Groups. Find pages where your potential customers are hanging out.
For example, if you are a marriage celebrant, do a search on Groups which have the words "wedding" "marriage" "ceremony" etc. Then visit those Groups and see how they are set up and how they work. Many groups will let you post comments or questions, so go ahead and give it a go. Make sure that you never try to sell anything … simply share good information and answer questions that people are asking. The more active and helpful you are, the more people will become interested in you.
Ensure you are posting in those groups as your business page, not from your personal account. To change how you post, simply click on the down arrow in the top right hand corner of your Facebook page. You will be presented with an option that says “Post on Facebook as…” then choose your business page.
While you are interacting with others, keep updating your own page. Some ideas to get you started:
1. Post photos with your comments
2. Ask questions
3. Put in ‘blank’ statements such as “Today I’m going to ___________”
4. Share “how to” tips
5. Funny or inspirational photos and stories .
It is important to understand that interaction on your Facebook page is critical to your success. The more people interact, the more your posts show in their Newsfeed. Their comments may show up in their friends’ Newsfeeds, thus slowly spreading virally.
Search Engines also take note of your social activity and the more people are talking to you, the higher you will rank.
The key point you need to remember is that if you want to succeed with social media, you need to touch people’s hearts. Find out what is important to them, what problems they are facing and what makes them laugh. Then interact with them in a way so they can relate to you. Don’t talk at them, don’t try to sell them anything, have a conversation with them … be interested in their problems and guide them to solutions.
Your Facebook page is not a shopping cart or a sales page. It should be used to build your brand, credibility and relationships with potential customers.
Partner up with other businesses and get a little creative. You don’t need a lot of money to succeed on Facebook. Just a few fresh ideas.
Here is an example of a great Facebook campaign, run by a local ice cream store. The Chill Bar partnered up with Schibello coffee and Sydney Football club. They organised an afternoon, where well known soccer players served coffee and ice cream to those who stopped by.
As a bonus, if you took a photo holding the coffee and posted it on Facebook, you got a chance to play a game on the beach with some of the footy players.
Needless to say, parents flocked to the ice creamery with their budding soccer players to meet their heros, get their autograph, enjoy great coffee and gelato.
The store got plenty of sales on the day, the football club got new fans and possibly signed up new players and the coffee brand got lots of exposure.