You’re not alone. There are many business owners that just don’t like Facebook.
They have found Facebook to be…
- Constantly changing
- A time sink
- Maddening and a few other choice adjectives
Maybe you hung in there change after change, but feel you’ve reached the end of your rope with the most recent Facebook changes to the News Feed earlier this year.
Here’s the good news.
Facebook’s most recent changes are what any smart business owner would do. Facebook researched its customers and discovered they weren’t crazy about being yelled at by the internet’s version of a used car sales person. That shouldn’t come as a surprise. No one enjoys that.
So it is encouraging its users to use Facebook in a way that makes sense for them and delivers more of what their fans want to see. Without happy users, Facebook doesn’t exist.
What recent changes? In January of this year, Facebook start cleaning up its News Feed environment by reducing posts that push people:
- to buy a product or install an app
- to enter promotions and sweepstakes, without providing context
- or posts that reuse the exact same content from ads
Companies relying on promotional posts have seen a further decrease in their organic search. Those who have been all around good guys by providing useful information to their audience on Facebook are probably perking along without a glitch.
Today’s Facebook Reality
Your options concerning Facebook are pretty clear.
1. You can turn your back on your audience – those who want what you have to offer and who hang out on Facebook.
2. Or you can finally figure out how to make Facebook work for your business.
For those of you who selected Option 2, let’s get going.
I’ve tapped all of the right resources and Facebook notables for this list of 25 Facebook Tips broken into three large buckets.
- Upfront Work – Adapt to the changes
- Post Quality – Ideas on how to shift your posts from promotional to value added that will deliver
- Smart Implementation – smart steps to ensure your efforts on Facebook pay off
Get the right mindset. No more hard selling in your posts. Instead use your posts to engage, entertain, inform your audience AND differentiate yourself from your competitors. Save the ‘sell’ and ‘promotional’ messages for Facebook advertising. This is where it should be.
2. Clean House
Do some spring cleaning on your Facebook Page. Update your profile. Clean out those custom tabs you haven’t updated forever. Freshen up the Cover Image.
3. Make a Statement with Cover Image
In creating your new Fan page cover image, keep this question in mind:
Why should a visitor to my Fan Page want to become a fan of my brand?
4. Hang with the Winners
If you’ve been posting to Facebook, then you’ll have winners and losers. Review your Facebook post results and identify the winners.
Then go a step farther. Ask: What trends are there with the winning posts? Why might your audience respond to these posts? What are the common characteristics across these winning posts (e.g. headlines, images, messages, content, timing, frequency, etc.) How can you take this information and make even better posts?
5. Study the Numbers
Review your Facebook Insights so you better understand your audience…their demographics, what they seem to like, how frequently and when they’re on Facebook. Then use this information to craft your own plan.
6. Create a Post Calendar
This will help you be consistent, insert variety and allow you to easily pre-schedule your posts.
6. Stop acting like a Used Car Salesperson
Save your promotional and pricing messages for Facebook advertising. This is where it belongs.
Drop the “Buy Now” calls to action ploys with clear, mouthwatering, pain relieving benefits like “Tell me how I can get richer, skinnier, smarter, etc.
7. No click bating
Facebook is also tightening the rules around where to put your links. Facebook users say they don’t want them in deceiving headlines or hidden in photos, but up-front and clear in the post. So don’t put them there.
8. Put your post in context
Instead of pleas to visit your store or to buy your product, how about explaining why the action you want them to take will be advantageous for them?
Rather than the hard sell of “Click the link below to buy my new ebook”, how about a friendlier and informative approach like:
I struggled for years finding new customers. It was a punishing grind. Good news is that along the way, I’ve discovered some shortcuts that I believe you will love.
9. Diversify your Posts
No one likes a steady diet of the same thing day after day. Mix up your posts. Include infographics, images, quotes, contests, quizzes, and video tutorials.
10. Be Specific
Instead of a generic “Happy 4th of July” post, talk directly to your audience. Example:
Do you want to know how one business was able to create some fireworks around their small business…or their accounting firm…or their real estate firm, etc.?
11. Share the Good Stuff
If a customer gives you rave reviews or your company just received an award, share it with your fans along with how this makes you feel.
12. News Jacking or Trending Posts
Posts that touch on more popular trending news will receive more rewards. Use Facebook’s trending information and experiment with how you can link your product or service to fresh trends.
13. Get Inspired
In every industry – including yours – there are social media movers and shakers. They are the ones running circles around the rest and they are doing a great job of keeping their fans engaged. Study influencers in your industry. Study the Coca-Cola, the Walmart, the American Red Cross or AirBnB.
Your fans can also be a source of inspiration. See what seems to get them excited on their pages and consider ways you can tap into that excitement.
14. Engage on your Fans Pages
You’ve heard the saying, You reap what you sow? Well, sow a little good will around to your fans. Show them some lovin’ by visiting and engaging on their Pages and they’ll return it in spades.
Encourage your fans to click on the “Get Notifications” on your page. When they like your page, they simply hover over the Like button and “Get Notifications” will appear. This way, they will receive a notification whenever you post.
16. Engage Your Email Subscribers
Encourage your email subscribers to share your content on Facebook.
17. Join Facebook Groups
You want to join these groups to add value and to make great connections. Not to SPAM.
18. Team Up
There may be an influencer or loyal fan of your Page that has a lot of followers. Consider asking them to team up by having them share your posts on their site and vice versa. If they have a lot of followers, you may want to consider giving them some sort of compensation. Not only will it help expand your reach, but you will be building a strong alliance down the road.
19. Get your Employees Involved
If you have employees, get them involved in your Facebook page. Have them link to it from their pages and interact, share and post to it. Just be certain you have guidelines for them to follow to prevent unintentional fallout.
Don’t forget that engagement is a two-way street. There can’t be anything worse, than not responding to fans.
21. Send them to YOUR Den
In light of all of the changes to Facebook over the years, it should be crystal clear that you need to use Facebook to capture your audiences’ attention and move them quickly to your email subscriber list. It is through email where you create a real relationship – a relationship that doesn’t include cat videos, punk stars and online graffiti.
22. Be Web Ready
You will want to have your website prepared to move your Facebook fans into your website funnel so you can continue the relationship and create a stronger bond.
23. Create a Facebook Landing Page
When you send them to your website, be certain to create a specific Facebook landing page so you can track your success.
24. Open your Wallet – but not too far
Unlike what many business owners do with traditional media, establish a monthly budget for your Facebook advertising. Do not, repeat, do not just run ads willy-nilly. That’s flirting with a costly disaster of your own making.
Start small until you know which ads work and which don’t. Once you know what is working open up your wallet a little more.
25. Measure What You Treasure
All of your effort will be of little use if you are not tracking your results. Not just your posts, but also your advertising results, the number of email subscribers from Facebook. Keep track of it all, so you will know what Facebook is delivering.
What other Facebook tips can you share that have helped your Fan Page? Share them below.