By Amanda Webb of Spiderworking.com
Facebook is the world’s largest social network expected to tip one billion users by the end of the year, so it’s not surprising that so many businesses are keen to utilise it as a marketing tool. As with so many other kinds of marketing it’s not enough just to set up a page, to be successful you need to work at it and measure the results against business goals. Here are some tips on how you can ensure the success of your Facebook marketing.
Is Your Target Market There?
With such a large user base it’s safe to assume that almost everyone is there. Facebook users span all ages, genders, occupations and interests. There are particular age groups and genders that are prevalent however. Currently the largest share of visitors to Facebook fall into the 25 – 34year old segment (but the spread is pretty even across all age groups) and 57% of users are women. http://allfacebook.com/facebook-statistics_b76427
If your target market isn’t female between 25-34 there is still a strong chance they are on Facebook so how do you find out?
B2C – If your target market is consumers Facebook is probably a good bet. As revealed in the statistics above whether male or female, young or old a massive proportion of the online population are on the network. If your target is either too young to use Facebook or elderly you might think about targeting their parents or children instead.
B2B – If your target market is other businesses the best way to discover if your clients and potential clients are online is to look. Make a list of existing clients and Google the company name and ‘Facebook’. If a good portion of your customer base have Facebook pages then you should too. Once you have set up your page you can go into ‘business mode’ by using Facebook as your page (select use page as and your page name next to ‘home’ on the top tool bar) and connect with these companies and business to business.
Define Your Goal
Once you’ve discovered that your customer is online the next step is to decide what you want to get from your Facebook campaign. It’s not enough to just to be there, you will soon get tired at working away at it unless you start to see results so you need to decide what those results should be. Having a defined goal for what you are doing will make it easier to devise a strategy.
Here’s some goals you might consider as a small business:
- More footfall in shop
- More traffic to website
- More subscribers to mailing list
- Increased spend from existing customers
- More visits from existing customers
- Reactivate dormant customers
Once you have set your goal it’s easier to find content that will help you achieve this goal. For example you could broadcast a special ‘whisper code’ that customers have to say when they come into store in order to get something for free, or a discount code for your website. You can also share in store special offers with customers.
Example shows Kerrigans Meats, Dublin Facebook Page
Create Interesting Shareable Content
Not every post can be a sales post, creating interesting or amusing content relevant to your target market will help spread your message further and encourage others to connect with you.
Some kinds of content have a better rate of engagement than others. For example a photograph tends to get more Likes than a link or a status update and Videos get more shares. If you upload a video or photo directly to Facebook when it’s shared your information will travel with it, this will bring people back to your page and encourage more likes and interaction.
Example JustEat.ie http://www.facebook.com/JustEatIreland
Sharing Is Caring
Whether you’re B2B or B2C interacting with other business pages on Facebook will help you build relationships with other businesses. If you are B2B you will want to engage with clients, potential clients or those that share your target markets, if you are B2C you should be forging relationships with other business pages that share your customers. Leaving valuable comments on their posts and sharing their content when relevant to your target market will help you build these relationships, you may even progress to running a cross promotion or a joint competition.
Engagement is key to success on Facebook, every time that someone likes, comments or shares one of your posts you have the opportunity to reach their friends. The average user has 130 friends so each interaction is potentially reaching an extra 130 people. Our friends very often share interests so this viral spread of your message is invaluable. There are lots of ways you can encourage more engagement. For me the number one thing you can do is ask a question. Try and end each post with an open ended question.
Example Sage Ireland Facebook Interaction
Now and then it’s worth asking a question outright, you might find that a simple question will spark massive interaction .
Example Spiderworking.com Facebook page
How To Get Facebook Likes
This is the question I get asked the most. The number of Likes you get shouldn’t be your specific goal but of course you do need to have people Liking your page in order to get engagement and interaction. Here are some tips on getting people to Like your page.
Have you any tips for Facebook success? I’d love to hear them.