Tips that dig beneath the obvious for unpaid facebook content management.
Table of Contents:
Everyone starts their approach to facebook by creating a business page. For most small businesses on Cape Cod, they begin and end their facebook efforts at the page. Unfortunately, this is not always the most beneficial approach. Facebook has tailored their business plan hoping you will follow within these guidelines. Have you ever noticed how hard it is to build a following?
Even then, why is engagement so low even after a lot of likes are generated? Facebook is hoping that you will resort to paid “boosted posts”. They have made it so that all unpaid posts on your page only reach 1 to 2% of your page’s total likes. If you have even a thousand likes, that’s one ten to twenty people who will see your content in their news feeds. And what do those boosted posts do?
Boosted facebook posts only increase this 1-2% reach. Most page managers will do boosted posts hoping to expand their audiences, when really they should be using facebook ad manager, or alternative page features to increase their reach. What might these alternative features be?
Facebook Page Apps
Social Media Examiner lists several useful facebook apps for businesses. If you’re capturing leads, or building an email list, there are apps that will add form fills to join your business’s newsletter. Integration apps link your instagram, twitter, youtube, and facebook all in one. You can post on one platform to cover all platforms and even schedule when the posts go out. Online retail can link eCommerce platforms such as shopify. Need to schedule appointments with your clients? Calendar apps create an automated way to have your clients do the appointment setting work for you!
I recommend going through the list to see which apps will best benefit your business the best. For a technical walk through of adding apps to your page, check out facebook’s help post.
All the content you post on your page should have your ideal audience in mind. Not only that, but you want these posts to have the highest potential to go viral. If your content is well received, and there is incentive for the user to share, comment, or like on the post, the engagement will show in your expanded audience’s news feeds, walls, messages, etc.
This can be encouraged organically, or literally. An example of literal encouragement would be a post that announces an prize to a user selected at random who shares the post. The better the offer, the greater the engagement.
An example of organic encouragement might be to post a meaningful quote that your audience and their friends may relate to, entertaining photos or videos, or asking an opinion. There is unlimited room for creativity. Again, let your goals and your knowledge of your audience guide your content.
Page Maintenance – Business Info, URL, Images, Call to Action
This section is more of a checklist than a guide. Make sure all of your business info is listed in the proper areas and not just in your “about” section. When your facebook page’s business info is consistent with other listing platforms such as google maps, yelp, and yellowpages, Google will rank this information higher than other businesses. Why is this?
If your information is inconsistent, Google will have less confidence in presenting your information to users. Their goal is to always present the most relevant and accurate information.
After you reach 25 likes, you can create a custom url. Be careful when deciding on your url, because the change is permanent for the most part. Make the url as relevant as possible to your business name. Another factor to consider is to make the url match keywords that someone might search to find your type of business.
It’s the little things that matter. Make sure your profile and cover images match the correct dimensions. Your profile picture is 170x170px and the cover photo is 820x312px (640x360px for mobile devices).
Your page’s Call To Action Button is essential if your page has any purpose beyond having a presence. Similar to the different features that apps help you do, a call to action button will inform your audience to take an action. This can be as simple as “call now” or “book now”. Although this may seem painfully obvious, the importance of your call to action cannot be overlooked. It is the gateway between a user curiously looking into your page’s info, to taking action towards your business’s end goal.
Building Page Audience
There are shortcuts to build your audience, and then there are organic audience building methods that I will go into in the next sections. Utilize all methods to build the highest audience possible!
By using Chrome and a facebook invite extension you can invite all of your existing friends to your page, event, and group.
Start by creating a personal facebook account for yourself dedicated to the business. If you already have a personal account, create a duplicate so you do not catch friends in family with all of your invites (I had to learn the hard way by not doing this!). Don’t create a personal account with the business name. The friends you add and facebook both catch on that you are being spammy.
Who should you add? Look to your audiences watering holes; competitor pages, facebook groups, facebook events, where ever they tend to congregate online. Prioritize adding the users that have the highest engagement with criteria such as comments, likes, shares, and tagging friends.
What you’ve done at this point is created a social media mailing list. This is something that is not possible through paid advertising on facebook.
While you can build page likes, you still will only reach 1-2% with your posts. By doing the following method, you ensure that your invites reach 100% of this audience. Imagine you’ve hit the max of 5000 friends, you now have access to advertise anything you want at any time for no cost. This is the true alternative method for a small business entrepreneur to bypass paying. It takes work though.
Whenever you find a good point to take a break from sending friend requests, feel free to invite your current list to your page, event, or group.