Facebook is this enormous omnipresent social media platform which offers businesses a great way to promote their products to an ever-growing audience.
If you’ve got a business the chances are you’ve either already got a Facebook page or you thought about one and decided against it. If you decided against it you might have done so because you didn’t think it would reach your target audience but we’ve got some information below to dispel that.
If you do own a Facebook page but you’ve left it dormant then don’t click away as this article may trigger some ideas for re-establishing it and seeing the value in it. Remember, think about what a potential customer might think when they come to your page and see it hasn’t been updated for a very long time…not good right?
Finally, you may have a Facebook page which is regularly updated with fantastic content. If that’s the case we’d love to hear your thoughts after you’ve read this article.
1. The Numbers
Facebook is enormous. In the UK alone there are over 30 million users and despite perceptions of it being for the younger generations there’s actually an increase in people 35 years and over who use Facebook. In fact, over 30% of users are aged 35 or over and that means you’ve got a target audience no matter what the age of your typical customer.
Not only are millions of people signed up to Facebook in the UK, they use it frequently as well. Do you know how many times a day the average user logs on to Facebook? 1? 2? 3?
No, the average Facebook user logs on 9 times a day (and if you’re anything like me you’ve maybe just taken a mental note to tone it down a bit!) and half of all users under the age of 35 log in to Facebook as soon as they wake up!
So you see (and I’m sure you didn’t need me to tell you) there’s a huge audience on the platform and it’s spread across all age groups, genders, marital status & religions. These people are on Facebook frequently and it’s up to you to figure out how you find them & market to them through your Facebook page.
2. Flexible Content
A website is great and it’s essential for any business. However, it won’t necessarily offer you the flexibility in content that a Facebook page (or any social media platform for that matter) will offer you.
Generally your website will (hopefully) look nice, it’ll have a list of products & services, a contact form and maybe a section about you or your company. It might also have a blog on or some other form of dynamic content but your website will still be fairly static and any changes that you make are dependent on people coming to your website to see them.
Facebook gives you flexibility to post what you want, when you want and it also goes straight to your audience. You can share examples of your work, product discounts, special offers and interesting articles or simply (and often importantly) converse with your followers through a well thought-out post.
This is flexibility is powerful as you avoid flooding your audience with the same information repeatedly, day-on-day, week-on-week and a range of content gives you a Facebook page rich in interesting content for your audience to enjoy.
3. Promotional Content
Here’s something which is really powerful and I thought it warranted a section of its own.
Facebook allows you to promote you, your company and your staff and I don’t just mean through the typical methods such as “Look at our great products” etc. I mean you can demonstrate to your audience how you’re constantly striving to improve your service and your products.
For example, if you’ve been on a course lately you can share that with your followers. Earned a qualification? Share it. Won an award? Share that & shout about it.
You might think (especially in the UK as we’re all somewhat reserved when it comes to self-promotion) that people aren’t interested in this sort of information but it’s actually really powerful and once again it shows potential customers or clients that you’re professional, you’re smart and you’re improving your business all the time.
The other way to promote yourself or your business is through high quality written content. Writing a blog or article on the topic of your business and sharing that via Facebook or other social media channels is a great way to promote your expertise in an area. Over time, and with good content, you can be seen as an expert or thought-leader in your chosen area and that can really enhance your reputation and brand.
4. Engage with customers
One of the absolutely key reasons for having a Facebook page or Twitter account these days is the value it brings in customer engagement. We are now in a world where customers expect to be able to interact with businesses online and they also expect quick responses.
Almost 50% of customers who’ve purchased from online retailers want to use social media to reach out for customer service. Just under 40% want to use social media to give feedback on a product or service and with expectations rising, 39% of customers expect a response when using Facebook in 2 hours.
My apologies for the sudden flurry of statistics but this is key information. Customers want to engage with businesses and brands and they want to do it via social media. Customers’ being more vocal is only a positive for your business. You get the chance to not only see the feedback, positive or negative, but you get to respond to it quickly and visibly which is a great way to turn around any dis-satisfied customers.
There’s also the chance for less formal engagement. Using the right tone or voice on your Facebook page is important; you need to consider whether your tone will be formal, informal, friendly or professional and direct your content from there. I’ve seen some great examples of engagement from well liked brands who might simply ask their followers “How was your weekend?” or ask a question in related to some shared topic and that’s been well received with their audience.
Facebook is a collaborative forum. People like to see what’s happening, they want to engage and they want to like what you’re sharing. It’s just up to you/us to ensure we’re delivering the right content for them.
5. Engage with other businesses
You may think that your Facebook page should only look to attract and engage with new or existing customers, but what about engaging with similar businesses?
Engaging with other businesses is an important way of increasing your reach and following. Like pages for similar brands & businesses and talk to them. Like what they’re posting, comment on topics and be genuine. By doing this, your business (your Facebook page) becomes visible and that visibility will only help to increase the popularity of your page.
6. Strategic Advertising
Sounds complicated, it’s not. Facebook used to be great for what we’d call “organic growth”, which by definition is the “total number of unique people who were shown your post through unpaid distribution”. An example of organic growth is where you post something on Facebook and the more people who liked and commented on it the more it would be seen by other Facebook users and so on and so forth. But then Facebook changed the rules.
Facebook realised that if they changed this and reduced the natural organic growth of posts and content they could push people toward paid advertisements and that’s what’s happened.
What does this mean? It means that to reach a wide number of people with your content you’ll need to use their paid ads. However, this isn’t all bad. Although you’ll need to pay a Facebook ad can be very powerful if used in the right way. Not only that, if you have a particular target customer base (i.e. 90% of your sales were to a certain gender or age range) then you can focus your ad on that particular demographic. The key is to plan your advertisement effectively and ensure you’re gaining the maximum benefit from your paid ads.
79% of social media users said that they are more likely to purchase through Facebook than other social media channels. Using a Facebook page will allow you to show off your products, highlight discounts, inform followers of special offers and direct them straight to your website (if that’s where they purchase your products). Better still, use targeted advertisements (see above) and you can push those great products to an even wider audience.
Some businesses will want to use their Facebook page to build & promote their brand whilst others will want to directly and very obviously sell products. You will decide how best to structure and use your Facebook page to achieve your goals.
A Facebook page can be an extremely powerful marketing tool for your business. Irrespective of whether you’re a small local business or a huge multi-national company, it still offers you the opportunity to engage with customers, promote your products and ultimately, drive sales.
It doesn’t need to be daunting but it can be a challenge to run alongside your day-to-day business. Knowing how to set-up your page, how to organise and promote content and finding time to engage with followers can be difficult, especially when you need to do it often in order to do it well.
This is where we can help. We can support you with page setup & we can run your content for you based on a strategy which suits your business giving you peace of mind that you’re promoting your business on Facebook (or the chosen social media channel(s)) without needing to find the time to do it at the end of a busy day. Get in touch, we’ll be happy to discuss how we can help you.