Is Your Business Doing Enough With Facebook Marketing Tools To Attract New Customers?
Facebook Marketing is something that more and more local businesses are starting to address and it probably comes as no real surprise as to why. The meteoric rise of Facebook is nothing short of staggering when you consider that at the start of 2005 the social media site was practically unknown outside of a few US college campuses. As of August 2012 it has a global user rate of just under 905 million and is set to hit the billion mark by mid next year. Ireland alone has over two million users at present and that’s a little over 45% of the country. This means that for local businesses Facebook Marketing is an ideal opportunity to open their doors to a wider audience who otherwise might not have known about them.
The practical implementation of Facebook Marketing is fairly simple, the first step, as a business you would need to have a business page. This is where you can start to build a rapport with potential customers, announce deals or special offers and generally reach out to your target demographic. This is not a place for constant direct selling, instead it’s all about building relationships and indeed gaining trust. Over time your “fan” base will grow as you receive more Facebook ‘likes’.
So how do you get people to ‘like’ you?
By posting regular and friendly updates about your business and by engaging with your audience you can encourage prospects/potential customers to ‘like’ you. There are a number of popular ways to grow your audience, including
- Providing good information on an ongoing basis that is of value to your audience
- Providing interesting and entertaining content that people not only enjoy themselves, but will share with others
- Running competitions to encourage people to engage
- Providing special offers that are “exclusive” to your Facebook or other Social Media following
As in real life, with Facebook Marketing you are competing for people’s attention online – to get and keep that attention, your Facebook Page must either be informative, entertaining, rewarding or a combination of these.
Once you have expanded your fan base you can look at marketing specifically to customers who already ‘get’ what your company is all about.
Facebook Marketing Ads
When it comes to Facebook Marketing, another tool available to you is the use of Pay Per Click or Pay Per Impression ads. The unique opportunity with Paid Facebook Marketing or advertising is that you can identify the specific demographic that you want to target. For example if I am a wedding photographer in Waterford – I can target my ad at Facebook users in the Waterford area, who are single. If I want I can specific an age range and whether I want it shown to user who are male, female or both.
This demographic targeting can be very cost effective for local niche businesses.
Many businesses mistakenly think that when they post an update on their Facebook page, that this gets seen by all of their fans. This is not the case – in actual fact it may only be seen by as little as 10-15% of your Facebook Page fans. Because of the vast quantity of content being posted on Facebook, there is an algorithm used to decide what is or is not presented to each user.
Facebook does have the facility for you to pay to have your post appear in front of a greater number of users. Again when used for targeted posts, this can be very effective.
To further enhance Facebook Marketing capabilities, they have recently launched what is known as sponsored results. This means that anyone doing an organic search on the site will have sponsored results come up first, similar to that of Google. For those that pay for the ads, it can greatly increase visibility and in effect has the ability to place your company right in front of your target audience, every single time.
Insights for business
Finally Facebook’s insights for business pages are an essential tool when it comes to Facebook Marketing as they provide detailed reports and analytics on your page and how it’s performing. From these results performance of your different marketing campaigns can be measure and tweaked if necessary.
For any local businesses, plugging into and harnessing the power of Facebook Marketing is important but it can be time consuming to set up and manage, especially if you don’t have a marketing department, or the marketing department consists of…well…you. It is also a lot more successful when there is a clear social media strategy and associated processes in place.
For this reason many small business outsource their Facebook Marketing to experienced professionals who offer affordable services to small and local businesses. Why not give us a call and see what we can do for you today. You may be surprised!
Declan Clancy is an enthusiastic, results oriented and creative Digital Marketer with 9 years hands on experience across digital channels.
In his last role as Group Digital Marketing Manager for Trigon Hotels, Declan was responsible for the ecommerce strategy and implementation for their 3 hotels. While at Trigon Hotels, Declan won Best use of Twitter for a Large Business at the Cork Digital Marketing Awards for his work for Cork International Hotel.