Creating Community with Facebook Pages
People go to Facebook to connect with friends. It is the world’s most popular online community, so developers realized businesses needed a way to create profiles to reach their customers. Pages were born! Facebook Pages provide businesses with remarkable tools to connect with customers.
If you have a local business you should consider a Facebook Page — even before you build a website.
Make managing your page a regular practice.
Your Facebook Page can help your business grow, but like any resource, it requires maintenance. If you don’t open your doors and turn on the lights, no one will visit your business. Likewise, if you just set up your Facebook Page but neglect it your traffic won’t pick up. So, get used to logging in regularly to manage your Facebook Page and keep visitors interested. Here’s what you need to do:
Learn to use the tools available in Pages.
Your Facebook Page is loaded with FREE marketing tools to grow a healthy following of truly engaged customers. Getting started is as easy as posting updates. The tools get better from there, but first, let’s talk posts.
Create engaging posts.
Engaging posts drive traffic as followers respond and share. If your posts don’t do those things they aren’t engaging. So, consider the anatomy of an engaging post:
- it has purpose
- it elicits a response
- it catches attention
Business Me: “What do you want you post to accomplish?”
Fun Me: “I just want to share this cute puppy photo.”
Business Me: “DON’T!“
Okay, if your business is puppies, maybe, but this scenario illustrates the thinking that goes into the process of creating engaging posts.
“Publishing Tools” lets you create many types of posts, schedule them, then track their performance. The simplest are text posts. These can simply say “Hi” to your audience, contain hyperlinks to things you want to share, or note quick updates. Photo/image posts typically perform better as they catch visitors’ eyes and lend themselves to sharing. These are followed by a number of more specific and self-explanatory post types.
Tip: use Canva to create social media images and gobs more.
Respond to messages and comments.
Visitors contact you through comments on page posts and direct messages through your page. Keep an eye on Comments and Messages for notifications. Businesses who respond to visitors get noticed by Facebook and visitors alike. Facebook notes how quickly Page owners typically reply to messages.
Offer exclusive discounts.
Draw attention to your services or products with discounts. Some of the best drivers are “freemium” offerings: products people can download for free, often by completing a signup for newsletter or sharing content, but in the beginning you just want to make it simple as you build your audience so just offer it as a thank you for stopping by. If you charge for services or products, create a discount flyer or code with an expiration to drive interest and business. Finally, create consumable content like downloadable info or worksheets or even videos to share your expertise with your audience.
Facebook Pages makes it easy to track engagements with your audience. You see in real time how many people your page reaches and track that over time. This is invaluable as you create content to connect with your audience. If something’s working try it again. Something fell flat? Tweak it and adjust your strategy. Keeping at it over time will give you a feel for your audience and what connects with them, not what you think might connect with them.
Run an Advertising Campaign
Once you’re on your feet run an ad campaign. Facebook Pages makes it easy and affordable to create, run, and track targeted ads on the Facebook platform. Don’t be bashful! After all your hard work you want to get the word out.
Keep at It
As with anything in life, once you find a good thing keep it going. You’ll build a community around your Facebook page by continuing to use the tools as I’ve outlined above. You’ll learn what works and what doesn’t. You’ll grow stronger and more adept with your page. It become part of your practice and business model.
Go for it! Log in to Facebook and launch your page today!