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Best Practices for Using Facebook for Business

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Best Practices for Using Facebook for Business

Facebook has over 1 billion users. Need I say more?

From a business perspective, how many of that billion could be your ideal client?

But Facebook is more than slapping up updates about your sales or “what’s new at the company.” Business users need to remember a whole myriad of things that can help optimize their time of this platform and build their Page into a growing Page. Here’s a few:

Utilize Facebook’s Scheduling Feature for Pages: I recently had a business owner ask if it was OK to only post on Facebook “once a week,” My answer? SURE…if you never want your updates to get seen or your page to grow. Consistency is key to keeping your Likers interested. When I pressed her for details as to why she only wanted to post once a week, she responded she was worried she wouldn’t have the time or she would just plain forget.Enter Facebook’s handy little schedule feature.

Facebiik Schedule Feature

scheduling2If you want an extended tutorial on how this little bigger works, go HERE, but the short story is that you can schedule updates into the future using Facebook’s own scheduling tool. This allows business Page users to set their updates and forget. I would still highly recommend showing up on Facebook at least once a day as a live human, even if it’s only for 15 minutes, but the Facebook’s scheduling option does free up time without losing visibility.

Build Top-of-mind awareness: Build a reputation of being knowledgeable in your field on Facebook. If you blog, feed your blog posts into your Facebook Business Page using RSS Graffiti or Networked Blogs. Offer as much value-added information as possible because in reality, you don’t want to be sending your ideal client elsewhere to get information you yourself could be providing. Share tips, tactics, share other people’s/business’ updates, and anything that makes Likers look forward to your updates. Build trust now. The selling will come later.

Keep It Brief: Gone are the days of Facebook users leaving half of a novel as a status update. The on-line world is noisy and readers have about a 4 second attention span to get interested in what you are saying. Facebook’s character limit is a whopping 5000+ words, but the “sweet spot” is only about 80 words if you want to get and keep your Liker’s attention. And let’s be honest folks, if you feel that passionately about something to write more than 80 words as a Facebook update, it’s time to copy, paste, and go create a blog post about it. Want a good example of brands that can “keep it short and sweet” and yet have good impact?  Check out Disney’s Page and also Zappos.

Make The Time (With Boundaries): Set aside a time block every day of 15-30 minutes and use that time to post, comment on other people’s Wall, share, tribe build, and connect. The people are who tell me “I don’t have time to work my Facebook Business Page” are typically the same people who bogged down reading useless emails for hours a day.   Have a strategy with your Facebook Page as well and keep things lively by engaging user’s comments. Ask questions or opinions whenever possible to encourage engagement and images are KING on Facebook these days. Use third-party content, posts with links, use pictures, audio, and video to keep things fresh, consistent, and viable. Show up and be seen!

Back to the “Images Are King” Comment: Images are an absolute MUST these days on Facebook. I firmly believe that Pinterest has raised the bar, thus spoiling us all rotten in our expectation of bold, vibrant images to look at. Your Facebook updates will get far more attention (social media experts say as much as 80% more) than just plain text update with no accompanying image. Use tools like PicMonkey or Pixlr to create striking that your friends and fans will be glad to share.

Use The Tools: Tap into Facebook’s extra options like Sponsored Stories, Promoted Posts, Offers, and Promotion/Contest Options. Promotions are an amazing way to gain Likers and spread your brand, but they can be a slippery slope as well. Hire someone who knows how to create and facility your Facebook Promotions/Contests instead of risking pissing off the Facebook Gods and having your Page shut down.

Update: Facebook has lifted its restrictions on conducting contests on their platform, but there still are huge benefits to using a Third Party App to tap into the power of running contests on FB. Check out my comprehensive guide called The Dos and Don’ts of Facebook Promotions. 

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