So you want to have a Facebook following. You want to reach a lot of people across the world with your message, something you deeply believe in, your beloved creation that makes people’s lives easier, better, more vibrant. You want you and your product to be seen, acknowledged, celebrated. You want to bring value and leave your mark on the world. How do you do it when you are new to Facebook or have been in marketing / advertising for some time, but notice that your methods no longer work in this new wild digital space that seems to be changing every day?
It is really very simple. So simple, that it is often overlooked.
Just a little bit ago advertising and marketing were all about getting in front of the customer more often then competitors and proving that your product is better than all else on the market. Those days are, believe it or not, long gone. In 2018, when everyone can get in front of everyone else utilizing free media channels, pure exposure tactic no longer gets you sales. Neither do your arguments on how functional and amazing your product is, because now the world marketplace is more open and wide than every before and access to the better, more cost effective thing is easy and in complete control of your customer. They very much think for themselves, shielding their attention span from your spam. Which is what you are to them with your boring advertisements.
Here is where the power of social media comes in, as it (social media) has changed the face of marketing forever. And today we will cover Facebook as it illustrates the concept of new marketing in one of the best ways.
So how do you achieve that fabled connection everyone is talking about these days? How do you touch the hearts of your audience in a way that they fall in love with you, your brand, your product, and keep buying it even if it drives them insane sometimes ( get the hint, Apple! 🙂 How do you create a community around you and your passion utilizing Facebook ?
Here are the key points to remember and utilize:
1. It’s all about value
You have to provide valuable content to be/stay relevant engaging. You can not create a narcissist page that only tubes about how great you are and how cool your service is. You have to provide valuable information, insight, education, entertainment. Then and only then will the people notice you and may be come back to your page the second time around. Or may be you will post/create so much cool content that they will keep coming back expecting it. The reason I separated “post” and “create” is because you don’t even need to create original content on your topic to have a killer page and loyal following. But if you share true quality content that brings value to people’s lives they will come back for more. And more. And more. Think of it, do you like hanging around a friend who constantly talks about themselves ? They never ask questions, never share any stories, knowledge, insight, advice… but just talk about how great they are? How fast does that become exhausting and redundant to you ? Or take some time to analyze who of your friends you do follow and why. Chances are, you are most excited to see posts from a certain group of people because they consistently post something funny, witty, intellectually-rich, because you deeply care for them as people (how did you get there?), or because they create and share something truly unique or even strange, and you just watch their progress out of curiosity. Same with Facebook business pages. We hit that like button in the beginning when we have interacted with the content the page produces, and enjoyed it. We got inspired by a video story, we read an article with helpful tips that can make our lives better, we participated in a passionate discussion about something we feel strongly about. Next time when we see a post by that page in our newsfeed, the likelihood of us slowing down the scroll and paying attention is directly proportionate to the value we feel we got out of the first interaction with their content. It is really that simple.
2. Keep it open and personal
This is not the time to hide behind your business anymore. In fact, it is time to do the opposite. Time to introduce yourself to the world, share your passions, hopes and fears with the world, and connect with them on a real human-to-human basis. Then will you have the apple-quality following, that will have your back even when you mess up. Then they will deeply care about you as they cared for Khloe Kardashian when the cheating rumors broke out right before she gave birth to her baby girl. Then will your clients become your friends, your allies, your gang. And you will lose the need for advertising as we saw it even 1o years ago, as they will do it for you. You will do it for you. By being open and vulnerable, honest and humble, you will connect with people on the level of our humanity, as we all share the same fears, drivers, pain and happiness. And with millennials being the driving force of todays’s marketplace, openness has never been more important. This is a generation that does not tolerate lies, they do not tolerate being sold, they see right through your pretty sales language, and if they do not see true value, if they do not notice honesty, they are long gone to the ones that inspire them, educate them, engage with them (it has never been as easy as now to engage with your customer in a real dialogue, as it is with social media, so failing to do so is fast noticed, and comes across as “you do not really care”.)
Do you know why you do what you do? Is it to make a quick buck or do you have trouble sleeping at night thinking that you can make the world a better place, but are not sure how to tell everyone about it? Today people can smell your intention better ever before and your “why” shows in your very communication or lack thereof, disrobing your intention on the spot. And Facebook, being the content driven media outlet (the value lies in the pieces of content shared – actual articles, videos, engaging posts ), provides the perfect opportunity to pick your meat off the bones with every new update and distill if you are actually passionate about doing what you do, or are just banking on some skills without your heart in it. When you are honest about your “why”, when you show up for your customers in an honest attempt to help, you shine on social, attracting quality following very fast.
4. Tell stories
Facebook LOVES stories, especially in the video format. Be honest, how many did you watch just in the span of just today? Probably at least 5, and that is because they are so engaging, invoke so much emotions, that one of your friends has shared them, and, look, now you did too! The art of storytelling can help here, but if you lack in that department, your heart will help. Get sappy, get vulnerable, get real with the stories you highlight, and people will see the realness in you, the humanness, the authenticity. If you share your own personal stories, not only will they get a chance to feel inspired, motivated, uplifted, but they will quickly relate to you on a deep human level, as we all have the same struggles, the same fears. And those who openly admit to them, get the most love and recognition. They live lives full of true deep connections and abundant business.
5. Keep it consistent
Consistency is everything for building and maintaining (let alone growing) your online following. When people get hooked on the content you produce, they are very easily disappointed when they can’t get that piece of awesomeness they expected from you by letting you into their lives. So as much as you can, try to plan out your social posts (at least the ones that bring real value to your people) in advance, and execute in advance so that you have a solid base of posts to schedule. This will keep the pressure off of you, and your followers entertained and engaged. And if you feel like a post a day is slightly too much for your schedule, go to one post a week, or even one post a month. If your content is worth it, people will gladly wait for a month for more of your awesomeness.
6. Move your content
99% of the time static content is dead content. This is a golden rule of the internet. If you produce a piece of content, and post it on your page, how will people find it, if you do not have anyone who liked your page yet. Or what if you have an x number of followers, and only certain people are engaging, but not producing any shares or growth? You want to spread your content as wide as you can before you can build up a solid following who will do that for you. Facebook groups can help you greatly on your mission of spreading your content. By finding groups of people who might find what you post useful, you are upping your chances of being followed by them greatly, and if you manage to be really precise in your targeting, they will quickly convert to sales. And bring you more effortless sales by sharing your stuff. Another great way of circulating your content is boosting it. In this case thinking through your customer avatar is going to make or break your wallet. $10 boosted post can translate into thousands of clicks if you target the right people. Or you can spend $100, see a lot of impressions, and zero real movement on your page. If your are really precise about who you are targeting, if you really know your audience and manage to put your content in front of them, you gain more and more quality eyes on you and your business, greatly increasing the likelihood of conversion. In later posts I will write more about how to build your customer avatar, stay tuned.
7. Partner with publications
Another great way to share your story or your content on Facebook, is to partner with online publications that do just that. Bored Panda, for instance (this is a very, very general example). Simply submit your content, and if it is good, it will be shared with millions of their followers. How easy is that ? I once wrote for Collective Evolution and Natural News and gained a lot of good following that way. Certain Facebook pages will share your content because it is good, certain ones you might have to pay. But if you see that their following and your customer avatar match, it would be a wise investment to consider.
8. Parter with influencers
The term “influencer” is a fairly recent phenomenon, but is a very helpful identifier to grow your social media following and engagement. Influencers are people on social media who have a significant following. Hence, having a power of influence over their opinions. Think about it, if you have a friend, and you have tried an new amazing shampoo, you will tell your girlfriends all about it. Because an amazing shampoo is a big deal. For you and for them. Not only that, because you value the quality of your hair and the quality of your shampoo, you will tell it to them with such passion, it will be really hard to resist driving down to the store imd-conversation to get that unicorn shampoo. And what if you had 1000 friends that you deeply cared about and told them about your new love-affair with shampoo? That shampoo company would gain 1000 more clients that day. Thanks to just you. Simple. The more friends you have, the bigger is your power of influencers. And companies are willing to pay people with a lot of “friends” to try their products or to plat out promote them. You can become one of those companies. Just find people with a solid following that you resonate with, make contact with them, get to know them, and work together. Their power of social reach can help you with yours.
Wow, it turned out to be a pretty hefty article, and I am not even half-way done talking about all the amazing things we can do with Facebook. But more in other posts. For now, I just want you to remember that Facebook is all about value you bring to your customers, it is all about the quality of the content you produce or share. So for today your questions are: Why do I do what I do? What drives me? How I can I share my passion with my community / the world? How can I educate my audience? What knowledge do I want to share with them? What stories do I want to tell my audience that can help them ? How do I want to inspire people ? What things that inspire me do I want to share with the world ? What information can my customer benefit from ? What other pages on Facebook talk to my potential customers and how can we work together? These questions can help you determine the direction of your content production, and slowly set you on your way to growing your loyal following and making valuable connections online.
I hope this article was helpful and will help you utilize Facebook in growing your business. I will see you in my next blog, and for now let’s chat in the comments below. What other information about using Facebook for business would you like to know? What do you feel like is still a grey are to you when it comes to Facebook ? Let’s chat in the comments.