Whether utilised as part of your marketing or social media strategies, Facebook is an excellent tool through which to advertise your company on both a local and global scale.
With an estimated 2.5 billion users worldwide, there is an almost unprecedented opportunity to gain access to a wide variety of niche markets – not just in terms of gender and generational marketing, either, but right down to people's specific interests.
How can you leverage this platform for your business interests, though?
Promoting Your Business on Facebook
Advertising your business on Facebook isn't a complicated process as the company's algorithm does much of the heavy lifting for you. However, to help you understand the process better, we've compiled a list of essential and comprehensive steps that you should follow.
Whether you're seeking to market your company through a business page, or to advertise it through Facebook Ads, this is how to push your business on the world's largest social media platform.
1. Create a Business Page for Your Company
As a business owner, one of the very first things you should do (regardless of whether you are an online venture or a brick-and-mortar location) is to create a Facebook business page. Indeed, one of the initial checks that you should conduct prior to naming your company is to check if it is available as a social media handle, in order to avoid any potential disputes.
Like a personal profile, a business page is its own searchable, viewable, and contactable presence. Therefore, you should create one that reflects your business as much as possible. Ensure that you don't ignore the critical elements of the page, such as your contact information, a profile and cover photo, and then focus on adding content to your newsfeed, or (if you are a business with physical items to sell) listing your products.
2. Use a Content Planning App to Optimise Engagement
While you can, of course, manually create posts for your page, this can soon become time-consuming. This is where a social media management tool can come in handy, with several – such as Buffer, Hootsuite, and Social Report – available for free (with restrictions).
This ensures that your entire social media posting calendar (not just Facebook) is organised and visible, and enables you to spread out your posts as and how you see fit. This is particularly convenient if you want a specific post to coincide with an event, such as the start of a sale or the launch of a new product.
Perhaps the best thing about social media management software, though, is that it provides analytics and data metrics that reveal when the optimal time to post is. This ensures that you are receiving maximum engagement on your Facebook posts and increasing the chances of attracting a conversion.
3. Get to Know Your Audience
As your business grows and starts to acquire an audience, you'll want to build relationships with them. Facebook is perfect for engaging with the people who are most interested in what you have to offer, and who have voluntarily chosen to be exposed to your content and branded materials.
For instance, you can create polls asking fun and appealing questions to captivate your audience, but through which you can also gain valuable lessons and insights.
Utilise giveaways and competitions, too, such as asking your followers to share your content in exchange for the chance to win a free product. This is a great – and free – way to gain extra exposure by letting your customers do the work for you.
4. Conduct B2B Networking
Considering that Facebook is, by definition, a social network, why not use it as an opportunity to connect with other companies, too?
If you share a similar audience with a business that is not a direct competitor, you can like and comment on their posts and eventually reach out through Facebook Messenger to propose a potential collaboration.
Take the example of Contact Coffee in the UK, a niche coffee roasting startup run by military veterans. They regularly run promotions and offers in conjunction with other military-targeted businesses, such as kit, military insurance and fitness providers, often in exchange for affiliate commissions on any leads generated. This is an excellent example of how to leverage the followers of other pages for your own gain.
5. Offer Direct Customer Service Through Chat
Modern consumers don't just want to see your business page – they want to interact with it, too. Therefore, you need to try and respond directly to any enquiries posed on Facebook, whether they are comments on your existing posts or direct feedback on your wall.
If you find that the volume of messages you are receiving is beginning to climb, it's a good idea to disable posts on your wall and encourage users to send a private message instead. That way, you can easily implement an automated answering system on the Messenger service, either offering immediate answers to frequently asked questions or displaying a message that you will reply to their query as soon as possible. In this case, ensure that you have a swift turnaround time and that you – or your social media manager – is checking messages regularly.
6. Plan an Event and List It
If you have upcoming events related to your business, then it's vital that you post them on Facebook. As a business page, you can create an event announcement directly from your profile with all the necessary details of the occasion (including the date, time, and description). Importantly, you can also automate reminders to those who have marked themselves as interested in attending the event, while potentially attendees can also share the announcement on their own profiles.
7. Utilise Paid Advertisements
As a business, you don't need to pay to be on Facebook. However, it's a wise idea to utilise the platform's advertising system, known as Facebook Ads.
The main benefit of Facebook Ads is that it utilises the company's data algorithm, meaning that your ads are only shown to those groups of people who are most likely to engage with it. This makes it highly cost-effective, as well as allowing you to see how well or how poorly a particular campaign is performing through your company's insights dashboard.
8. Join Groups Related to Your Niche
Perhaps the most prominent method of promoting your business on Facebook – outside of your business page itself – is by joining groups. With a simple search of keywords related to your business niche, you can find multiple groups filled with people interested in what your business offers.
However, it's essential when joining such groups that you don't push your product - and that you certainly don't spam the group's members. This will likely get you banned almost instantly, and your company's name will soon be blacklisted in similar groups. Instead, aim to be helpful when engaging with people and only promote your products organically.
As these eight steps show, it's not enough to simply create a business page on Facebook; you need to be active in promoting it and be prepared to reach out to others and engage with your followers. Indeed, given the recent changes in Facebook's algorithms, it is more important than ever to be proactive, especially if social media is a significant part of your overall business strategy.
In a similar vein, don’t forget to check out our guide on how to promote yourself on Instagram, either!
What do you think? Is it worth investing your time and resources into promoting your business on Facebook? And, if so, what are some of the other ways in which you can achieve this? Either way, let us know your thoughts in the comment section below!