March 21, 2015 Michael Bickerton
We’ve established the need and reasons why a Facebook page is a must for all retailers and small business owners. We’ve also provided you some ideas on how to approach and engage your social media followers. Here are some essential tools and tips that will help you reach Facebook success and get those clicks on the infamous “like” button when you use Facebook for business.
The great thing about a Facebook page is that it is easy to build and it is FREE! Although it is an easy task for anyone to create a Facebook page, it is no easy task to make it a great one. In truth, they are two very different things!
The first thing you need to decide before getting into the nitty gritty is a username. Make sure that your username is original to your brand, because it will also be included in the URL. There are lots of Facebook pages out there, so you’re going to need something that will help set you a part from everyone else. We’d recommend you specify your location, for example.
i.e. Metro/Oakvilleshops or Metro/UpperOakville or Metro/UpperMiddle
The point here is that you want to be specific and ensure that your page is location based. This is especially important for franchisees and multilevel stores!
2. The “About” section
There is a small “about” section where you can include a couple of sentences about your company, business or organization. This information can include key information about what you offer to your audience so they can understand what your organization is about.
We recommend that you include a link to your website as the about section is displayed on your Facebook homepage.
3. “Details” in about section
This section can be used to include additional information about your company. Information such as phone numbers, email addresses, full address. As well there is a wide variety of information snippets like website links, awards, topics and mission statement. It’s recommended to provide as much information as possible.
4. Cover photo
A picture is worth a thousand words. As such, ensure that your cover photo is visually appealing and speaks to your brand, your product, your store and your people. The cover photo is impactful to all visitors on your page, so ensure you are “speaking” to your brand.
It’s smart include your tag line or marketing message in the image. Hiring a professional for the cover photo is a good idea if you’re not familiar with the photo tools available. Facebook does have guidelines – click here to find more.
5. Profile photo
Choosing a profile picture is important as well. We recommend you utilize your company logo as the profile photo is used when you post and comment. Just double check the sizes and do some testing as Facebook automatically resizes images. It’s best to keep it clean, and the icon as large as possible in the smaller formats.
6. Invite your Facebook Friends
Once your page is complete and you’ve made a few posts, there is a feature to invite your current “personal page” friends to like your corporate page.
While in your personal profile, view the corporate page, and in the “three dots” section, you’ll find link to invite friends.
There is also the opportunity to invite email lists, but use this tool sparingly, as Facebook does at time limit this process. It’s great for lists of 2,000 names and less. Keep in mind that the invitation will be send to only those emails that are connected to a Facebook profile.
Content is king, as such it’s imperative to provide information that are relevant to your business: sale dates, special offers, events, a change of hours, etc.
The goal is to provide information, but also make your content fun. Match your content to your style, or your brand style. Starbucks is a great page to view, as we believe that they are extremely effective in the use of all social channels. Content is anything you make it to be – whether it’s a photo, video or a blog. Strike a conversation with your audience.
Facebook is a great tool for building awareness and driving traffic to your blog as well as sales pages.
8. Automatic Posting
Automatic posting is a tool that can be leveraged to assist retailers and marketers manage the time requirements of Facebook and social media posting.
Facebook has a great feature for that retailers can use to plan their posting, once or twice a week verses reviewing things on a daily basis. It also has the ability to automate some publishing by feeding your blog posts and twitter updates to your Facebook page.
Promoting your page is one way to drive social traffic, find new followers (i.e. likes) and develop awareness. Your website is a natural first step. Landing pages, email invites and email footers are all great ways to promote your page.
Plugins allow you to integrate your website with your Facebook page and allows people to share and like your page on Facebook in just a couple of clicks.
Marketing today for a number of reasons is “offer” based. It’s notable that people like your page or subscribe to your email list primarily for a “special offer”. Consumers today expect a deal, they expect transparency and they expect to save money. It’s our recommendation that you provide “valuable” offers and “special” opportunities to your social followers ONLY. Give them a code, a one-day sale, something that shows them that you care and appreciate them.
Facebook is a natural FREE tool that can create activity, drive traffic and provide brand awareness. It’s a great location based tool, and there are very few places for free that you can “talk” to your friends, fans, and followers for Free.
It’s social media – so keep it social, fun, light and brand focused.
Want to keep reading? Check out tips for Social Media Success.
Michael Bickerton, Raven5 Ltd. March 2015