Putting the ‘Manage’ in Facebook Management
Getting the most out of your Facebook business page takes a lot of time and knowledge. Posting a couple of selfies and sharing LadBible videos might be fun but, when you think about it, does it reflect your brand professionally? Will it generate enquiries? We thought we’d share with you our top tips for genuine Facebook success. Because if something is costing you time, it is costing you money and you want a return.
The stuff on your page at the front end, what Joe Public sees, is just the tip of the iceberg. The real work is done underneath the water by constantly learning (and implementing). You’re already ahead of the curve by showing a willingness to read this blog. Many business owners carry on doing stuff the same old way and get left behind.
The six words that will finish any business are, “We’ve always done it this way.”
Here at Codebreak, we manage dozens of Facebook pages day-in-day-out, so we know what it’s like at the coal face. The info below is all practical, not fluff and theory.
Reflect your brand
We see lots of pages not sticking to the ethos of their business. This means they post content that is not in-line with their customers’ attitudes and values. Does the person who is managing your social media know what is acceptable to your audience and what is not? Or are they simply posting the kind of content that they personally like?
If someone is active and popular on their own channels, that doesn’t mean they will be great handling a business page. Indeed, they may already be having great success managing another page, a side business of their own perhaps. But doing great stuff with a window cleaning page doesn’t translate into being able to look after a legal firm’s page. A lot of “rules” apply to any business page; they can also vary from audience to audience.
Know your audience.
The bottom line is – a business that posts content that is out of synch with with their target demographics will miss out on engagement and sales. And it is easily done; funny videos are a good example of this.
Now, we can enjoy a laugh at a viral video as much as the next Facebook browser. A man falling off a treadmill. A cat beating up a dog. Hilarious. However, most people that interact with a business page are probably there for informative reasons and can quickly grow tired of ‘funny’ posts being shared. Once a week or something, fine. All the time? No.
It is about balance. Which brings us nicely on to…
Variety is the spice of social
You have to keep your content on-brand, yes, but we’d also advise keeping your Facebook posts varied. If you are a solicitor and all you do is bang on about legal stuff, even legal eagles will switch off. Share news from your business and industry – absolutely – but mix it up a bit. Branding up a nice review, a ‘meet the team’ post, maybe a business quote or two….
Photos are good for engagement (never post text only) but videos are better. Videos are the best way of showcasing the people in your business. People buy people. If you can build your own YouTube channel, that will keep Google happy. But when you post videos onto Facebook, do it directly rather than sharing a YouTube link. Facebook and YouTube do not like each other, and a native video will reach more people.
You can share other experts’ articles too. If you are a property developer, follow people such as Kevin McCloud and Sarah Beeny and share their posts every so often. Just be careful that the people whose content you are sharing aren’t devisive characters. Stay away from politicians.
Links to your own articles are advised, of course. Most websites will benefit from a blog, where you host your own news and views. A good blog is about sharing your expertise free of charge. Then drive people there from social. Good for your website visitors and (again) good for Google. We write lots of blogs for lots of clients because they work so well.
As well as keeping your content varied, you need to post regularly. We often find that people post in spurts. They get all enthusiastic and post 20 times in a week… then drop off the radar for a month. A lot of marketing success is down to consistent persistence. We love that phrase. Imagine if someone is researching you online before making their purchasing decision and they see that you last posted two months ago. You’ve potentially done more harm than good.
With any social media platform, be there or don’t. Half measures are bad.
If you can post engaging content on Facebook five to ten times a week, wonderful. That’s all you need. Unless you’re a news agency able to report on any subject from anywhere in the world, once a day is enough. You can actually damage your overall reach if you stifle a good post with weak ones.
Not just selfies
Posting an image to Facebook is simple enough but consider if there are any potential risks before pressing that button. If it’s a picture of the staff or customers, do you have their permission to use the image? Might it be unwittingly advocating behaviour that doesn’t align with your values? Could it raise sensitive issues, from body shaming to political views?
You can’t always play it safe but one “wrong” post in this age of screenshotting can undo a lot of great work. Codebreak has been called in to troubleshoot when the brown stuff hits the fan and sometimes it can get properly vicious. Rarely but sometimes. Keyboard tough guys threatening you and so on. Usually it boils over but it can be unsettling it if it catches you off-guard. So do monitor what is being posted if it’s a member of staff.
To this end, we always advise keeping the number of admins to a minimum. You, the business owner, are a full admin. Anyone else is Editor level and below, and no more than two or three. We could tell you some right horror stories about employees with a grievance and access to the company Facebook page….
Facebook Ads are there for a reason
Facebook is a business! Shock, horror! Facebook wants to make money and they do it through advertising. But this is a good thing because of their volume and depth of user data. Targeting people by their interests, family status, work situation… Where else can you do that for £1 a day?!
There is no point an SME being on Facebook if they are not paying for Facebook Ads. You simply won’t be seen by enough people. Your best friend may ‘like’ all your posts but the beauty of social media is engaging with people you’ve never met. And with ads, those can be targeted people. Not just any Tom, Dick and Harry.
Facebook Ads is a crucial tool for increasing reach and engagement when used properly. We don’t mean boosting posts here and there. Ads should be specifically designed and tested through Ads Manager if you want to get the biggest bang for your buck. What kind of ad will best suit your purpose? What images and headline will get a good reaction?
If you’re paying to drive people to a webpage, is that webpage strong enough to convert? Look at the final link in the chain. The landing page should look great on a mobile, contain everything your potential customer needs to know and have a clear call to action.
To reiterate, if your business’s main reason for using Facebook is that it’s free, you’re in trouble.
Being up during down-time
Managing a Facebook business page is an ongoing process. You can prioritise time for researching and scheduling but you can’t place a time period on interaction. Full Facebook management means full-time attention.
Which means you have to be available outside of office hours. That includes weekends, Bank Holidays and even Christmas. One of our clients was running a special offer over Christmas and it was Christmas Day, post-lunch, when lots of people decided to ask questions about the offer. Someone has to be available and respond to ensure that your Facebook is properly managed.
In this day and age, people don’t like waiting for an answer. If someone messages your gym on a Friday night asking for a tour, there’s no point getting back to them Monday morning. It doesn’t work like that anymore.
Phew, that was a whopper
Usually, our blogs are about 500 words. But there’s so much to say about professional social media management! Facebook is a tool at the end of the day and it can be used well or badly. Again, you want a return on your time investment. Facebook won’t be right for everyone but for some businesses it is worth having a Facebook page just so they can use their advertising platform.
If you have your social media in hand, great. But if you’d like to chat to Codebreak about our management services, please call 01743 491356 or fill in the form at the bottom of the page.
Who we work with
To help people and have fun
Tel: 01743 491356
4 The Creative Quarter
Shrewsbury Business Park