For better or worse, social media has come to dominate how we communicate, find information, and connect with each other. If you’re trying to get a small business off the ground, a basic social media presence is a must, and Facebook is more or less the overlord of the social media scene right now.
Here’s a quick guide on what to think about when laying down the Facebook framework for your business. We’ve broken down some information about Facebook Pages, Ads, and Groups, and added a few important ethical issues to consider, as well.
Arguably, a Facebook page is the most basic and important social media tool to help people find you. It’s also a great way to build a brand and relationships with your fans, customers, and audience. When someone hits that like button, they are opting in to get your latest news, posts and products.
Be sure to add compelling photos and media to get (and keep) people’s attention. Post everyday, but don’t overpost—conventional wisdom is that once per day is ideal, with a maximum of two posts per day. On Facebook, video is king, getting at least 60% more engagement than other types of content. Images and photos come in a close second.
Maybe you’re looking for a more organic route to Facebook marketing, and want to actually engage people and tap into communities that would be interested in what you have to offer.
The good news is, as of a 2018 update, Facebook Pages can now join Facebook Groups! Which means you can join Facebook groups and start discussions about topics which relate to your business (once again, avoid the hard sell and focus on building relationships).
You can also start your own Facebook Group, which is a great way to connect with your audience. For example, if you started a small business making handmade journals, you could try to engage your community by having them post what they’re writing and drawing in them.
Through Facebook’s ad platform, you can promote your Page, your posts, or even just your website! You can target your ads to users based on demographic information like location and interests. Buying a Facebook ad is easy—you can set a budget for the clicks or impressions your ad will receive. Facebook offers free ad credits at sign up so you can try them out first.
It’s a Matter of Trust
Facebook has been in some hot water lately. They are being sued by some civil rights organizations that suggest Facebook Ads promote discrimination. Facebook is also embroiled in another legal battle over whether or not Facebook Ads are misleading advertisers about how effective their ad platform is. The decision to use this resource is a personal one but know what’s in the news before you choose to engage or not.
Over the last few years, the news is out that Facebook has enormous power over people’s data. This has implications—ironically, Facebook’s data collecting capabilities make for powerful marketing tools in the form of Facebook Insights. But there’s a dark side to it as well, and when connecting with a potential audience, here’s something to consider:
When you place an ad on Facebook, for transparency’s sake, people can see that it’s a sponsored ad—which may be fine, or not, depending on your intentions.
Either way, audiences are savvier than ever and can smell the hard sell from a mile away—so it’s important to think about your brand’s reputation and how you want to build it before diving into any ad campaign. Whatever your goals are, you want your audience and customers to trust you—act accordingly.
These are just a few starting points—there’s a ton of different ways to market your business on social media! To find out how to get your business listed on Google, check this article out here.