It’s Friday! *and the crowd goes wild*
Quick update for this end of week for our blog readers. We want to make sure you are getting all of our updates for goings on here at the Chamber, with our members and in our community. We can’t have you missing out! Down at the bottom of each post are “share” buttons for you to be able to spread the words of the Chamber, but we haven’t made it easy for you to follow us via our other social media venues. Time to fix that!!
Friend, follow, etc etc… we do the same.
Have a great weekend everyone, hope it is enjoyable and you get some time to unplug and unwind!
Okay … last week, you connected with your Facebook fans… today the next step… with some help from Woosamedia.com
Your Facebook plan must include providing value.
The next step, now that your posts are reaching more of your fans (Continued from Social Media Friday: Are Your Facebook Fans Connected with You?), is to provide value to your followers so that others want to be involved, to have a relationship, with your business.
With social media, and through your fans, you are now one degree of separation from everybody who lives and works in your region.
Who in your region doesn’t do business with at least a single customer? No one. Capitalize on that! From Woosa:
Here’s the fact: Over 50% of the whole Facebook community log in to their personal accounts on a daily basis. This implies that with around 500 Million users of Facebook, over 250 Million are able to view your page.
How’s that for a customer base? That can equate to tons of dollars in earnings and even more work opportunities that you can actually get a chance to get involved in.
Still only a few Facebook accounts have the potential to obtain customers. You’ll need to tweak and test your page until it reaps a satisfiable result.
Although it is primarily considered a social networking site, it would also do the company good to examine first what impact they want to give in their page.
Do you want your small business to raise a corporate awareness among people on Facebook?
Do you want to add a touch of fun and excitement which will appeal to your target audience?
Or do you simply want your page to be a customer service area where informal questions and inquiries can be answered?
It’s important that you always regard value as your top priority whenever posting anything on your page. Avoid posting boring or unnecessary things. This means resisting the impulse to post personal content or even things that seem fun but aren’t helpful to your audience.
Here are a few more suggestions you should consider:
- Use Customer Testimonials
Looking at a person’s Facebook wall is one of the most frequent pastimes of men and women who are eager about social networks. In these modern times, social media management offers numerous rewards to entrepreneurs. You can persuade prospects by using testimonials from your current customers or clients. So, strongly encourage past clients to write their feedback on Facebook. It would be much appreciated if it’s voluntary but this isn’t often the case. Consider offering special deals or gifts. For instance, how about a 5% discount for every nice feedback?
- Interact with Potential Customers
If there are questions about your products or services, make sure you politely accommodate those concerns. Also, you’ll earn a good impression by answering the inquiries very timely. If you can’t do this, apologize for the late reply.
To help you with answering questions, you should also hold as much details in your Landing Page (or your Profile Page). This is when the Notes section of Facebook comes handy.
- Post Relevant Pictures
Quite a few use the Photos Page while some make pseudo-shops where they feature their items. Whatever you choose, just be sure the images are shown clearly. Presenting photos that look uninspiring and uninteresting won’t entice prospects. That’s why it’s important that you come up with eye-catching, even innovative photos, if possible. For instance, if you have a jewelry business, you can promote it on Facebook by posting photos that feature the intricate designs of your jewelry pieces.
Always remember these simple suggestions when coming up with content and you’ll have tons of prospects coming in to your business page.
Put that reach to work for you and your fans by sharing and re-tweeting (more on Tweeting on an upcoming Friday!! their posts.
When analyzing and judging your Facebook plan and its success (and I’m presuming you do … right?), do you take into account that only about 17 percent (source) of your business’ Facebook fans see your posts?
Some studies suggest the percentage might be as low as 3 percent. That means that even if you are doing well growing your fan base, the actual number of people seeing your posts is probably much lower than you think.
If your posts aren’t seen, your success will suffer.
Take a look at your Facebook Page.
Do you see a long list of posts with only a few comments, likes, or shares? That’s a problem because it informs Facebook that your fans lack interest, and generally have a weak relationship with your page.
Facebook has an algorithm known as EdgeRank, which decides if a post should go into your fans’ newsfeeds. If EdgeRank decides that your post doesn’t cut the mustard, it won’t show up.
The way to get more of your posts seen by your page’s fans is to make sure that Facebook can tell that their relationship to you is strong enough to warrant putting it in their newsfeed.
There are strategies that tell Facebook that the relationships they have with their fans are strong. One is to post the kind of content that more people chose to comment on, share, and like.
What to post? Photos, especially images of people your fans know.
Did you recently host an event or have a sale that someone took pictures of?
Hopefully you took lots of photos of your customers. Post those images, making sure you tag each person in each photo. Yes, this requires you to be a Facebook friend of the people you tag, which means they have confirmed a friend request from you, or you have confirmed one from them.
Another quick and easy social media plan is to visit your friends’ pages, as your page, and connect with them.
Look for posts on your friends’ pages that are generating interest, then contribute to the conversation.
All the commenters are then exposed to your page and have the opportunity to become fans.
This kind of proactive engagement is a great way to introduce your fan page to a wider audience.
Especially look for pages with high fan counts and heavy activity.
If you want to figure out your Facebook page’s engagement percentage do this:
As an administrator of your page, click on the Insights link. Scroll down until you can see the chart with your latest posts.
Add up the “Reach” of the 10 latest posts. Divide by 10 to get the average. Divide that average by your total number of fans. That will give you your actual reach percentage.
What is your business’ engagement percentage? How does that fit in with your social media strategy? What social media tips do you have for other businesses? What has worked for you?
I didn’t write this … but you know how I feel about this question! Geek=Cheryl!!
Facebook Pages have the look and feel of personal pages but offer additional features such as the ability to quickly send messages to thousands of fans (edit, resources, send an update).
With a fan page, as the admin to the page, you have statistics built right in about those who fan your page. This is a great way to measure your efforts, and really get a feel for who is your target market. (This is very important for advertising purposes.)
With a fan page, as a business or organization, you can link (like) other business pages – which builds you a community, business network. (if your business is only a ‘friend page’, you can like business pages, but those pages can’t link back to your business, so you lose the business-to-business networking.
With your fan page, you will also have access to allowing your customers to ‘check in’ to your location. (This is a feature that allows us shoppers to tell others where we like to shop – hence, advertising for you.) — This feature allows you the opportunity to take advantage of an option that facebook offers called “Deals”. (not necessary, but hey, it’s there if a business wants to use it…and it’s FREE.) The Deals feature is designed for a business to set up the parameters of those checking in.
Example: First check in at your location by a person can give them a free bookmark
Check in here 10 times and receive a free…..
Check in here 20 times and …..
Anyway, it is something that just helps encourage people to keep coming back (but remember, at the same time, every check in is an advertisement for your business on their walls to their friends.)
Friend/Profile pages limits business. They ‘work’, but you cut yourself short of all the fun ‘toys’ for business. (The other sensitive thing with a business having a friend/profile page, is that facebook frowns upon it, and if/when they discover one, they hit the delete button and then you lose everything you built up)
Hope this helps.
Kelso Longview Chamber of Commerce
Me again …. Would you add anything to this? Are you up to speed on this marketing strategy?
Keeping with our social media theme this week, today is Facebook! And today, I bring you another guest article from Frank J Kenny:
Simply put, you and your organization must have a Facebook presence.
Facebook for Small Business and Associations
Here are some statistics from Facebook to prove my assertion:
- More than 500 million active users
- 50% of our active users log on to Facebook in any given day
- Average user has 130 friends
- People spend over 700 billion minutes per month on Facebook
- There are over 900 million objects that people interact with (pages, groups, events and community pages)
- Average user is connected to 80 community pages, groups and events
- Average user creates 90 pieces of content each month
- More than 30 billion pieces of content (web links, news stories, blog posts, notes, photo albums, etc.) shared each month.
- More than 70 translations available on the site
- About 70% of Facebook users are outside the United States
- Over 300,000 users helped translate the site through the translations application
- Entrepreneurs and developers from more than 190 countries build with Facebook Platform
- People on Facebook install 20 million applications every day
- Every month, more than 250 million people engage with Facebook on external websites
- Since social plugins launched in April 2010, an average of 10,000 new websites integrate with Facebook every day
- More than 2.5 million websites have integrated with Facebook, including over 80 of comScore’s U.S. Top 100 websites and over half of comScore’s Global Top 100 websites
Nearly every participant in my small business audiences say they use Facebook. Why? Not only are their friends and family on Facebook, but so are their customers.
You must be where your customers are.
From dozens of interviews and consulting interactions here are some lessons and observations for your marketing through Facebook:
- Consider your goals. Branding/awareness and retention/loyalty are perfectly suited to Facebook. But very few businesses are using Facebook successfully for conversion. If you are expecting significant conversion of strangers to customers from simply being on Facebook, you will end up disappointed. Once you have decided on your goals, hopefully the prior over the latter, decide on a few metrics to judge your progress. Keep this simple. Don’t get bogged down with spread sheets but do try to correlate activity with results.
- For most small businesses and associations, according to the statistics and my observations, you will find your target market on Facebook. Search them out and engage them. You are not really doing social media for business right if you are only engaging family and friends (unless they are in your target market).
- You need both a personal profile and business page. They will overlap. Don’t even try to keep your personal profile void of info on your business. Same with your business page. For entrepreneurs and business executives, what you do for a living is a big part of your life. Trying to keep them separated is not a sustainable strategy. It only leads to diminished effectiveness and hurt feeling (I share a story at my seminars on how I friended a colleague only to be told that the colleague doesn’t like to mix business with personal. But when I looked at her Facebook profile, she had many of our colleagues as friends. Separation of work from personal is an unworkable long-term strategy. I advocate for 90% of your posts on your profile to be personal, 10% business. Vice versa for your business page.
- Encourage all your employees to use Facebook and the other social media sites to promote your business and engage your customers. Those relationships and promotions lead to better branding and loyalty. Have a policy written up to protect both the business and employees.
- Don’t use RSS or other automated means to duplicate your posts across sites and platforms. If you want to share your info widely, take the time to post them site by site.
- People cherish access to people in authority or higher positions in your company. You do not want to relegate your social media marketing to an intern. Everybody, especially the top people, should be doing it.
- Have consistency. Post at least once everyday to both your profile and business page.
- Answer all comments and posts same day. Engagement is golden.
- If you have separate divisions (niche, target market) set up separate pages.
- When somebody follows your page, send them a thank you Facebook mail and build the relationship without being pushy.
- Promote your page in all your marketing and advertising.
- Provide value to your target market – how-to videos, articles, info, news, etc.
- Help your customers by sharing their posts. Planting seeds of reciprocity each day.
- DO NOT create your page as a profile. Not only is it against Facebook’s terms of service, but makes people mad that you are gaming the system.
- Clean spam from your walls. Few things shout “I Don’t Truly Care” more than spam covered walls.
- Be strategic about the images in your image bar. Think about your brand and story.
- Post photos and videos, not just text. You will find that photos and videos have much higher engagement levels.
- Display signage that encourages your customers to become a fan. Give them an incentive, such as a discount for our fans or specials available only to our fans.
- Encourage Facebook checkins. Few things are more powerful than social proofing. 95% of people are followers.
- Think of yourself and your business as a media outlet. You can have immense reach today if you build up your friends, followers and fans. Huge reach at little expense.
- Experiment with a private Facebook group if you have customers and prospects that would love a chance to interact as a group. It will need to be nurtured but with a few strong adopters, you might find a unique value proposition here. This will create a velvet rope. People want what they can’t have.
- Create Facebook events and promote to your friends that might be interested. Don’t blast it out indiscriminately.
- Put your friends into groups early. It makes it much easier to keep track of your friends when they are categorized. My groups include college friends, North Mason County Chamber folks, family, folks from the speaking tour, speakers, and political contacts. Do this early because it is a lot of work later.
- Be real and human. Post funny pictures or observations. The more your customers and prospects simply like you, the more effective social media marketing will be for you.
- Tell your story. Tom Peters said the story is more powerful than the brand. See the free ebook chapter on story if you don’t know what I mean.
- Fancy Facebook landing pages look nice. If you have a big budget, feel free to have one created. But don’t think it is critical.
- Don’t hesitate to reach out to people you don’t yet know very well. If you have a slight connection you can simply send a friend request with something a simple as, “Hi John. We haven’t met face to face yet but we sure have a lot of friends and business contacts in common. Are you open to another Facebook friend from the industry?”
- Be transparent and open. The more info and communication you share about your business, the more your customers and prospects will get to know, like, and trust you.
- Keep it fun and don;t take yourself too seriously. It is not social advertising. Post 10 non-promotional pieces for every advertisement. Wishing people Happy Birthday, that counts as 1. Liking someone’s good news, that’s 2. Posting a funny photos that makes people laugh, that’s 3. Once you reach ten, on average, don’t feel guilty about saying you have just realeased your new book or are having a sale on Saturday.
- Post the photo of the social media poster, not the business logo. If you must have the logo, inset the photo of the person doing the posts or sign the posts. Anonymous posts are not nearly as effective.
Back to me again! I learned a few things in this article and I hope you did too. First is I do need to post a picture of myself, not just the Chamber logo. I’ve struggled mightily because I neither want, need nor think it is healthy to have it “be about me,” however, I understand that relationships are not formed between individuals and organizations, but between individuals & individuals AT organizations. So, I’ll give up, admit I was wrong (yes, someone should tell my husband I said that!) and talk to you as myself, not as “the Chamber.” The Chamber is NOT me, but I am the voice behind the curtain.
Hi! I’m Cheryl Detrick and I’m your social media conversation captain! Buckle in and let’s all enjoy the ride!
Tomorrow, we continue on our social media journey with LinkedIN! <—– That’s my profile page, add me!