Using Facebook Pages for Business Success

by Ian Humphreys

facebook-timeline-overview

Overview

In this post I’ll be answering some of the most popular questions asked by clients wondering whether they should invest time/money into Facebook Pages with the Timeline feature.

Why should I invest in Facebook?

Facebook is not only the UK’s, but the world’s largest social platform, now with over 901million active users per month. So whether you are a national business looking for world domination or just a local superstar with the aim to eventually branch out, Facebook accommodates everyone with its diverse fan base.

What are Facebook pages?

Facebook allows you to interact with your target audience through Facebook pages. Here businesses are able to build a network of clients and potential customers who connect with them through this medium. This method of communication is similar to email marketing, where users opt in (‘like’ your page) to receive updates from your business in the form of posts. With pages now being upgraded to include Facebook’s Timeline, research has shown that brands get 46% more engagement per post than previous profile interfaces.

Once you have built up a fan base, all the content you post on your Timeline will appear in your fans’ news feed. Here, content is key, as your brand is attached to every update, so make sure the information you release will only have a positive effect on your brand. Putting effort into your updates can lead to positive brand awareness, which in time increases conversions and repeat business.

How do I get started?

To start a new page, visit Facebook’s website and look for the link “Create a Page” or simply Click Here. Follow the step-by-step filling in the form as you go trying to fill in as much information as possible. You do not want any information missing from your profile that potential customers may be looking for.

As we all know, first impressions count and what better way to send the right message than some nice graphics. So once your page has been created it is time to start uploading some imagery, making sure to use the correct sizes for each Facebook Page element to avoid Facebook’s compression engine destroying the quality of your images.

“Pro Tip: Use graphics to make your USP’s and CTA’s clear, helping to push your marketing goals”

To help you out here are some examples of businesses that have done it right.

orange

Facebook-Marketing-Solutions

a2b-radio-cars

coca-cola

What is the trick to getting fans?

Let’s answer this right off the bat by saying there is no “trick” to getting fans on your Facebook page. The idea behind your business page having a following is that they are actually fans who care about what your brand has to say.

Anyone tricked into liking your Facebook page due to false claims or numbers purchased from a website, will not care about what you have to say about your product/service – which is not going to raise your conversions.

I would rather have 10 real fans that want to listen to what I have to say and engage with my Facebook page rather than a mixture of a 1,000 bots and un-interested “fans”. The same ideology can be used for local serving companies, for example there is no need to have a following which is based in London if you are a taxi company that serves Nottingham.
Starting out, the most successful ways to get real fans on your page are:

How do I increase sales via my Facebook page?

Remember, this is a social network and people use Facebook to engage in conversation and interact with their social circles. No one likes constantly being spammed with sales and on Facebook people’s attitudes towards this is no different. With this in mind, try not to be so narrow-minded and don’t just push straight for sales. Give your fan base something to engage with and they will reward you with trust in your brand, which will lead to future business.

Why and how should I engage with my fan base?

Every time Facebook updates its interfaces they seem to place more emphasis on the publication of people’s interactions. In recent updates they have included a real time ticker, which highlights the interactions of your friends with people and pages outside of your social circle. This is great for brand awareness as when a fan engages with your page they not only gain trust from the interaction, but they also display their trust to their entire social circle.

Most Popular Topics of 2011

Trending Topics

Here are some tips on how to increase engagement with your fan base – remember to keep these as on-topic as possible, as they became a fan of your service/product because this is the niche they are interested in:

Mobile users can check in at business premises

Facebook Places - Check In

“Pro Tip: Start a calendar and research iconic dates that are related to your niche. Spend some time on this and you will always have something to talk about.”

My competitors have X amount of fans, how can I compete?

With social media marketing becoming more and more popular, it won’t be surprising to find your competition has already started making a push to build their own fan base. This does not mean everything is lost. Analyse their social campaign and see what you can learn from them.

Starbucks have over 30 million Likes

Starbucks on Facebook

Trawl their timeline to find updates which have had the most engagement from their fan base and learn from it. If you stay dedicated and use the previous tips I have mentioned, you can catch up in no time.

“Pro Tip: Clicking on the app button which displays how many likes they have will give you a brief overview of their insights”

I will most likely expand further into engaging with your fan base in a future blog post, when I have the space to use case studies and go into further detail about each one. If there are any other topics you would like to see expanded upon then let me know in the comment section below.

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