To start with, this isn’t a definitive list of the Top 10 Facebook Tips for ALL businesses. Each company, brand or person should come up with their own strategy on how they want to use Facebook to engage with their audience, these are just some helpful pointers.
1. Think about your audience
This goes for everything you do online, whether on Facebook or Twitter, email or website.
You might think that this should go without saying, but you’d be surprised at how many companies push for “sell sell sell, buy buy buy” without thinking what their audience is actually getting out of it.
Think about who has liked your page: are they potential clients? are they already customers? could they be like-minded businesses or people in the industry?
If in doubt, ask the audience. Don’t be afraid to ask people what they want, more often than not they’ll surprise you.Facebook’s Insights show real-time statistics by post. You can see what works and doesn’t work by how many people are engaging with your posts – use it!
2. Ask yourself “Why are we using Facebook?”
If you’ve created a page because that’s what everyone else is doing then consider deleting it right now, or at least consulting with someone who knows what they’re doing!
When setting up a Facebook page, the first thing to ask yourself is “why?” – if you see real benefit then start formulating a Facebook strategy: what will you be posting about? how does it differ from any other website/blog your’re already using?
If you think there might be potential but don’t quite see how it will benefit in the long-term, or are still stuck on where to start, then ask someone. You could hold a brain-storming session in your company to get ideas from different departments/individuals (e.g. Sales, Marketing, PR, Customer Services, Events etc), or even asking someone externally to come in and consult as a one-off.
3. Click throughs
You might have added some company information in the About section, even a contact number or two, but it’s always important to make sure users know where to find more information about you, your company and your products/services – add links from your posts back to your website.
4. Add an RSS feed
Facebook allows you to add applications to your page, if you have a news or blog section on your website then RSS feeds might be worth a gander. Once the feed is set up, it will pull through new stories from your news or blog section saving you the hassle of adding it manually to Facebook.
Adding an RSS feed is NOT the only solution for your page. RSS feeds should always work alongside manual posts so that there is some original or different type of content to make the page more engaging.
Simply search for RSS in Facebook and a list of relevant applications will come up – it’s worth reading other users’ reviews before using the application to get an idea of how easy it is to use or how well the application works.
5. Make it visual
Adding photos, individually or as an album, and videos to posts will make your page seem more interesting and people are more likely to engage with your content and share it amongst their friends.
6. Make the most of the Timeline
A great feature of the new Timeline is that posts are chronically ordered and grouped by year, many pages have made the most of this by adding in historic events and Milestones from the company’s history – when it was founded, when it bought another company, when a certain product was first launched or re-launched.
A few insights into the company’s past might make the page more interesting, and who knows what old posts the users will find as they trace your business through the years.
7. Highlight / Pin to Top
Two more new features of Timeline.Highlighting a post (the little star in the top right corner) will expand the post across the whole page, which is great for images, photo albums and video content.Pin to Top allows you to pin one post to the top of your page for up to 7 days at a time – this is great if you have a competition running, a sale or even a new contact number.
8. Enable private messaging
A brand new thing for pages is the ability to have private conversations with the people who like your page.
It might be that you need to ask them to send you personal details so you can deal with a complaint or business request which they have posted on your Timeline, or it might just allow people who don’t want to ask a question publicly on your Timeline to come forward and ask that question – every little helps (to borrow a phrase).
9. Target your posts by language or location
When adding a post, next to the Post button is an image of a lock and the word “public”. If you click on it you are able to target your post to users who live in a certain country or speak a certain language.
This could be advantageous to local as well as international companies, let’s not forget that the UK has many different cultural communities – you might want to target the Polish or Somali community you know live in your town, or you might have started shipping abroad!
Facebook advertising is very quick and easy to set up, and the best thing is you only pay when someone clicks on your advert (if you select payment option CPC – Cost Per Click). You can set a reasonable budget and target certain people in certain location who have certain interests – however remember that people who have certain interests may not have added it to their Facebook profile so your advert would not reach them.
If you have any questions or comments on anything above or would like more details then don’t hesitate to leave a comment or find me on Twitter.
Remember, if the content isn’t appropriate to your audience or customers, the page will not be a success.
Last but not least, Facebook is a social network so be social and interact with the people who like you!