Social media brings with it many challenges, but the opportunities far outweigh the negatives. In fact, the playing field has never favored the small- to-medium business owner more than it does today. Why? Because if you know how to use the tools of social marketing, and apply smart online engagement strategies, the potential to generate sales is unlimited!
In this white paper, we’re going to focus on Facebook … home to more than a billion users worldwide. In fact, we’re going to share 3 mistakes that business owners make on Facebook, and how you can avoid these time- and money-traps to establish and maintain a winning Facebook marketing strategy that generates results for your business.
1. Over-valuing the volume of “likes” rather than the quality of likes
One of the first things most businesses want to create on Facebook is a large fan base, after all, the more people you have as fans, the more business you’ll generate via Facebook, right? Wrong.
Smart businesses focus on building a large fan base of qualified leads and customers. For example, if you’re a restaurant in Biloxi, having a ton of fans from Seattle isn’t going to drive much business to your Tuesday night buffet extravaganza. The number of likes you get is not nearly as important as the quality of likes you get.
When it comes to building your Facebook fan base, you need to be selective about who you target and how you attract fans so that your Facebook base aligns with your overall business strategy.
2. Posting content that fails to engage your Facebook fans
Facebook makes it super-easy to post anything. You can add a status update, throw up a picture, or post a video in seconds. Yet, you need to resist the urge to post anything on a whim.
Instead, think like your Facebook fans: What’s important to them? What are they interested in learning more about? What do they want to see in their newsfeeds? The more you get your fans involved in what you’re posting, the more success you’ll have.
Remember, too, that you get to decide what you post, but you don’t get to decide what your base sees. Competition to get into the newsfeed is fierce. You’re at the mercy of Facebook’s EdgeRank , the algorithm that decide what gets in the newsfeed and what’s left out. The more engaged your fans are (as measured by likes, comments, and shares), the more often your posts will appear in their newsfeeds. Failure to engage on a regular basis results in diminishing post delivery … and that, my friends, is disaster.
3. Too much product/service advertising … or too little
Facebook is not a vehicle for advertising in the traditional sense. That doesn’t mean you can’t advertise in your posts, it just means you have to be strategic about how you go about advertising and how often you do it.
There’s no one-size-fits-all approach to advertising in your Facebook posts. Again, you have to consider what your base wants to see. A restaurant is different than a boutique is different than a professional business coach, etc. What’s important is that you don’t overwhelm your base with material they don’t want to see.
In some cases, your Facebook fans will be looking for exclusive “Facebook Only” deals and will follow you as long as you’re delivering those to them. Just be creative on how you post these deals and try to create a sense of excitement so that you’re not boring your fans by doing the same thing again and again.
When it comes to how much advertising you should do on Facebook, know what your base wants from you and deliver it. That means you’ll be experimenting with the types ads and deals you offer. The best advice here is to go slowly at first so you don’t alienate your fans. Remember, it takes only a few seconds for them to “unlike” you … which you don’t want to happen!