While there are several examples of social media sites that have an advertising platform, Facebook is by far the most beneficial in terms of targeting and conversion. So unless otherwise noted, you should default to Facebook when you think about advertising with social media.
It’s no secret that businesses are reaching their customers in a very efficient way with Facebook ads. The ability to target your audience is on an entire different level than any other option available. So you want to make sure when your audience does find you, they will be impressed with what they have found.
Brand Awareness is Important considering how people now use Facebook to search
Potential customers will use social media to see how legitimate you are as a brand. This is where many people do their research now, it’s not just Google anymore. People are starting to use social media as a reference, the things people read on their timeline is starting to translate to factual information. You’ve probably done this yourself talking with someone at work or the gym, “I heard [insert business name] does a really great job for a reasonable price.”
Saying you “heard it” makes it factual, when in reality you could have just read a post somewhere about the business. This is powerful for businesses, and it means you should do everything you can to make sure the information presented on your social pages are attractive and believable.
Here’s a checklist for a nice brand image:
- An attractive header that clearly states your business's purpose
- A profile image that represents your brand, this shows up next to everything you post
- A complete about page, with relevant links
- Contact information if necessary
- Relevant tabs with action words
You can use Woobox to create custom tabs for your Facebook page. Just type in “Woobox custom tab” in the search bar on Facebook and follow the directions.
You should also be engaging your audience to help increase the image of your brand. By being active on your page, people will automatically consider you to be more legitimate. It’s very easy to spot a page that was made just to accumulate likes, don’t be that page.
How to engage your audience on social media
There are several free ways to do this once you have built a following. A lot of very successful techniques involve a giveaway of some kind. Say you own a car wash, make a post saying the last person to comment at an unspecified time will receive 3 free car washes. Not only will this keep the comments coming, it will show Facebook that this post is popular. That means it will be shown to more people. Win-win all around for you.
Another suggestion would be to offer your customer something for sharing the post. Tell them to come back and comment once they have shared the post and then they will be eligible for the prize. This creates the same type of buzz around your post and at the same time will allow you to reach new customers through people sharing the post with their friends.
Facebook marketing technique to expand your reach
A new tactic you should consider adding to your arsenal is building a fan page and a group. With less and less reach in the newsfeed, groups are a great way of ensuring that your posts are being read by members.
When someone joins a group, they will automatically be fed notifications by email when someone has posted in that group (until they opt out). So you better believe there is going to be more reach for every post you make. There’s no guarantee that your post will reach everyone who has liked your fan page, but with groups more people will see your content.
You can then use your fan page to promote your group. Once you get people signed up for the group, you will have better contact with them through posts. Also, don’t forget that others can add people to your group if your content is relevant and valuable. This is powerful in itself.
So… how do you build up that audience?
Free or paid social media marketing?
The simple answer should really be both. You may have to spend a little money to build an audience, but once it’s been built you can then promote for free.
There are some obvious advantages to using Facebook ads. The most obvious is that you are more likely to get people to see your ad because Zuck is making some money from it. So perhaps the quickest way to build that audience, if you have the budget, is by running paid ads. This is not an option for all businesses though, and there are ways to reduce the cost to an affordable level.
Because cost is such an issue for some small businesses, there are many tips and tricks to build a following without paid advertising. This can often be a long road that entrepreneurs will eventually give up on. The true value of a like doesn’t always translate to a profit in terms of customer value. If it does for your business, you should quit wasting time and load your ad up right now.
Are there other viable options for social media marketing?
Facebook’s platform is past the growing stage, this means the competition has increased and the costs, as a result, have risen. While it is still a very viable option that will constantly be improving, it may also be time to consider other ad platforms.
Pinterest has just opened up it’s Promoted Pins to small businesses and entrepreneurs. Now is the time to learn that platform and profit from it while it is still in the growth phase. But… it can sometimes be difficult to put your trust in something that is unproven.
Why should you venture out from Facebook if your current campaigns are profitable?
Well, it’s a simple answer:
You can become more profitable by getting cheaper clicks that are likely just as targeted.
You should only be advertising on Pinterest if your niche fits the platform. Milwaukee plumbing services are not likely to find a lot of customers on Pinterest. Facebook is where you need to stay. If you have a site that’s about scrap booking though, this could be advertising gold for your business.
With Pinterest ranking 2nd in social media referrals, it is definitely something that you shouldn’t ignore. If your target market is on Pinterest, go there, and learn the platform; it’s as simple as that.
Social media is the future
There is no question about the popularity of social media. People love to see what is going on in someone else’s life. This creates a great opportunity for businesses, people are on social media and people become customers. So if you haven’t started your social media campaigns yet, there’s no better time than the present. Hopefully these tips will help you get started.