As you already know, the whole world is on Facebook. They have about as many daily users as LinkedIn has monthly users. It’s very important for your business to have a positive presence on this platform. So, what can you post that will help increase your engagement and get people to go from Facebook to your website?
Engagement Comes First: Great Content
Engagement always comes first. That means you have to have outstanding content to get people’s attention. You need to educate, inform, and entertain 80% of the time. Great content includes responding. You can’t just look at comments and think “yay! They responded.” That’s not how it works. You need to make sure you are talking to your audience. It takes a lot of time and energy to get people to look at your content and when they have a question or something they want to tell you, you need to respond to that. It can sometimes be as simple as a like but ideally you want to comment back. Facebook sees each comment as an individual comment and will give more weight to posts with more engagement. This means you can improve your own engagement just by responding to questions and comments from others.
You can also use the tools you have. Use Facebook Messenger and Pages Manager. I could never monitor the pages we have without Facebook Pages Manager and I still have business owners who don’t have it.
Video is still one of the most engaging forms of content. 45% of the Facebook audience watches an hour or more of video on Facebook every single week. For many, they watch that much daily.
When you are posting your great content you have to be consistent. You have to post on the daily. Ideally, for your business page, you want to post once per day, 5 days per week. Can you get away with 3 posts per week? Sure. You absolutely can. I will tell you to do what you can handle. If you only have the bandwidth to handle 3 posts per week, do what works for you consistently and don’t sweat it. However, ideally, you will want to post 5 times per week. If your page has a ton of engagement you can even get away with a little bit more. I mean a ton of engagement. There are very few pages that can carry the weight of multiple postings per day. Once per day is plenty even for pages with thousands of followers.
It’s OK to Sell Your Products and Services
It goes both ways. Some people sell too much and some sell too little. You have to Goldilocks it and get it just right. 80/20 is the rule. 80% of the time you want to educate, entertain, and inform. 20% of the time you want to sell. 20% of the time you want to send people back to your website to purchase your services or products. You want to post links that lead back to your website. If you are a retailer with amazing products and you have a ton of stock can you get away with reversing the 80/20 rule? You bet you can. You have to gauge what works for you. However, most pages can handle selling only about 20% of the time.
On the other side of that, don’t forget to tell people what you do. Don’t get so caught up in educating, entertaining, and informing that you forget to sell. People will see it, become interested, and go to your website to check out more information about what you’re offering.
Get More Page Likes
It’s so much easier to preach to a choir than it is to drag people in off the street. How do you get more page likes? First and foremost, invite the people who like you already. It’s ok, every once in a while, to put a link on your personal profile that says “Hey! Are you following me on my business page?” Most people on Facebook have several hundred personal friends. I think it’s ok periodically to remind them that you have a job that pays you and they might need your services. You never know who needs what. You never know who has a sister or uncle who’s looking for what you sell. I’m not telling you to wear your friends and family out because that gets old fast, but let them know what you do. If you have something new coming up, if you just wrote a book, if you have a new product coming out, tell them that.
Invite your friends, but only the ones that will benefit from what you do or sell. There’s a place on your page that lets you invite everyone you are connected with but only do it one time. This will keep you from wearing out friends and family.
Another way to grow your likes is to send out an email to your current client base and make sure they’re following you on Facebook. If you regularly send emails, make sure it’s easy to find you and follow you on Facebook. You can build it right into your footer. Most of the time it’s an easy ask, but you do have to ask. Is it ok to send out an email to your entire client base that says “hey, are you following us on Facebook?” You bet it is! If you send out 100 will you probably get 10 responses? Sure, but that’s 10 more likes. It’s more than you had before.
Of course one of the easiest ways to get likes is to pay for them. Now, if you’re going to pay to run an ad on Facebook for likes, you need to select your best audience. For instance, if I’m selecting an audience for me I’ll select small business owners and entrepreneurs. I can even get more specific about the industry. We do really well with wedding, retail, and real estate so I could narrow it down even further to those. If you’re a wedding planner and want to grow your likes, target people who are engaged. If you’re a retail store, target people who spend money online. There is a category for that within Facebook advertising. If it costs you $1 per like is it worth it? Yeah, you bet it is. It’s so much easier to talk to people who are already following you than to try to wave from the balcony to get their attention.
Another great way to increase your likes is to have a contest. Your contest has to make sense for what you do. Do you want to have a contest to give away an iPad if you’re a retailer? Sure, but only if you sell iPads. If you don’t sell iPads, don’t do that. It has to make sense for you. If you’re a realtor, and you want to have a giveaway, the best thing to do is to promote another local vendor. You can’t give away a house but you can give away something like Donut Joe’s donuts. If you aren’t familiar with Joe’s, they are a Pelham-based company with a ton of followers. They have great engagement and the people who go there love them. So, if you’re a local person, like a realtor trying to convince people of why they want to move to Pelham, well they’ve got a Donut Joe’s there. It makes sense for their audience.
For retailers, gift certificates make a good giveaway. Gift certificates work beautifully because only 60% of those with a gift certificate will redeem it. That’s crazy, right? Out of the 60% who redeem it, 75% of those will spend more than the gift certificate is worth. Very cool. Say you have a cool bbq set you want to feature for Father’s Day. You can actually feature the product but giveaway a gift certificate. That way they don’t have to buy the bbq set if that’s not something that interests them. As a retailer, you can even ask the vendor to donate it so you don’t have to come up with all the money yourself.
When doing a contest, always follow the rules. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve told someone that they can’t do a certain type of contest because it goes against Facebook rules and they’ve countered with the fact that they saw someone else doing it. While that’s true and you might get away with it sometimes, ask yourself this question: Are you the person who sees a state trooper on the side of the road and continues to speed past in hopes he or she will get the person behind you instead or do you slow down? If you’re the person that slows down, follow the rules, because if they pick you as the person they catch they don’t just slap you on the wrist. They can delete your page. A business without a Facebook page in this day and age is not good. It’s much better to be overly cautious and follow all rules.
Another thing to remember about contests is to make sure you are asking them to like your page as part of the contest rules. This seems like it should be obvious but many times people only ask that someone like and share a particular post to be entered. They also need to like the page.
Sometimes It’s OK to Boost a Post
Boosted posts can be a waste of money if you don’t do them correctly. Don’t go crazy and spend a ton of money boosting posts but do it the smart way. They work beautifully sometimes. That sometimes is when you have something specific to promote. An event, a promotion, a sale, or a contest are all great posts to boost. You can boost a post once or twice per month and what will happen is you’ll get a ton of engagement on that one post. If that post is for a sale or promotion, that’s a great lead generator. It’s also a great opportunity to invite those who engage with and like your post to like your page if they don’t already. Will every single one of those people accept your invitation? No but it’s low hanging fruit and you need to ask.
Use the Tools You Have Available on Facebook
You have watch parties, polls, Facebook stories, live videos, and more. Viewers are 4 times more likely to watch a live video than an uploaded video. I can’t say it enough. Let me say it again. Video, baby. It’s tremendous. It can make a huge difference in your business. Once you post a live video you can host a watch party on your page to highlight what you’re talking about. I could pick my most popular video in the last 6 months and host a watch party and give it the breakdown. It’s important to use the tools you have.
Are you using Facebook stories for your business page? The engagement is so high that you have to look at it. Seriously. Polls are great because people are generally excited to give you their opinion. You just have to ask them. Do you like this or that? You can integrate a poll into a contest. “Comment with War Eagle or Roll Tide.” It can be very simple. It doesn’t have to be complicated.
Make it Easy
The best way to convert is to make it easy. Make it easy for them to contact you and get more information. Make it easy for them to find you. You can start by making sure your contact button on your Facebook page works. There’s a little button on your Facebook page that says “contact us” or “call us” or “email us”. Click on it and test it. See what happens. Make sure what’s happening is what you want to happen. If you want an email, make sure it sends you an email. If you want a call, make sure it gives them the correct information.
Next, go to your “About” section and make sure all that information is correct. Make sure they can email you, find your website, and call you. Some younger business owners don’t like listing their phone numbers. I can tell you that us older people like to use the phone. I like to call if I’m doing research on a service or a product, especially if it’s local. Make it easy for your audience. It doesn’t matter how you like to communicate as much as how your clients like to communicate. Do what’s easy for them. Once you convert the lead, then you can train them to communicate the way you want them to. Once you get the fish in the boat, then you can figure out how to cook it.
What on this list could you start doing today? Put these ideas into practice and you will see your engagement and conversion grow.