What is the fastest way to reach about 500 million friends across the world? No, you don’t have to spend big bucks to get air time in a commercial during the Super Bowl. The next best thing to reach a crowd that big is to advertise on Facebook. There are a few ways to use the social media giant to your benefit when you are promoting a new product at your business, starting a brand new business or offering a service that could use a few clients. What are some of the ways to use Facebook to your advantage to grow your client base successfully?
Build a Meaningful Page when advertising on Facebook
Before you go off and spend money to promote a new business or the product it sells, make sure the foundation is solid first. The Facebook page or the webpage you intend to direct them to must be completely built. Don’t direct potential customers to a site that says coming soon or doesn’t have links and a fully interactive page set up. If they are directed to a site like that they will probably never return. It will waste their time and they will simply find someone who is open and ready to handle the business they were about to give you.
The page you are directing them to should include your mission, a brief description of the business and what you sell and how they can get it. The website or Facebook page doesn’t have to be elaborate, just complete. An incomplete page where they can’t buy directly from you or learn about the product and the price is almost as bad as one that isn’t working at all. Provide the basics to answer their questions so they can determine if they want to have the product in the first place.
Select the Right Audience for Your Ad to advertise on Facebook
Once your page is completed, it is time to build your advertisement in Facebook. The network allows you to choose your target audience for who you are intending to reach. The choices include the age, gender, relationship status, race and even region of the person who will see your ad. The narrower your focus is, however, the less people there will be to see your ad. The other option is to base your ad on the keywords that are closely associated with your business or product. When people have tags on their pictures or words in their posts that match your keywords, they will see the ad run along the side of their page. The audience can always be changed and adjusted as you go or when you create more and different ads.
Set a Budget and Stick to It
There is almost always a price to advertise your products and services. When you run ads with Facebook you are charged for how many times it will appear in a set period. For example, you want to advertise for two weeks because of a sale you have coming up. You can limit how many times it does pop up by adding in restrictions. When your budget is limited, and there will almost always be a limit to the budget, add that in to your setup. Stick to the budget and see what results it gets you before you run another advertising campaign. Not sticking to a budget can become very expensive and could make your business suffer as a result.
Advertising with a Page on Facebook
If you aren’t quite ready to run an advertising campaign that you have to pay for, then you can set up your Facebook page to attract more likes and viewers. Getting the word out through Facebook posts might take a little bit longer than an ad, simply because the ads are more targeted to people who are more apt to buy the product or the service.
When you have a product page set up, then you can start building a following with your posts, asking for people to share your page with others who might benefit from your product or even running a contest to gain a set number of likes and give a prize when you reach that amount. The posts you publish to your wall can’t simply be ads that ask for your potential customers to buy something. Ads are trying to sell a product, a page is trying to build a relationship with customers so they might buy a product and recommend you to friends who are also in the same market for a product.
The posts should include a mix of media and content in them. You can certainly promote new products you intend to sell, but mix it up with tips on using current products better, instructional videos on what else they can do with your product or links to contents they might enjoy entering. You could also include the bio of your graphic design person, share a funny story about a bird nesting outside of the lunchroom window or else a non-profit group your company is supporting. Make the posts be well rounded to include many aspects of your business.
Keep Your Posts Well Rounded Too
Just like the content of the posts needs to be well rounded, the way it is presented should be different too. There could be links to a webpage, there could be pictures posted or else you can even create a video to get your message across. Make them different than always just being words to look at in the morning. Your posts are having to compete with the posts from every other business out there posting each day, so do the best you can to draw attention to yours and your alone.
Don’t post too often either, as that can backfire and not get you extra attention. Some companies mistakenly post every single day in the early morning hours, with a bit of text. Boring. Change up the time of day when you post so you can reach a different crowd of people potentially with your posts. There are people who log on only in the morning before they go to work. There are students who check out Facebook after class before they take up a second job. There are also people who only get a chance to look on their newsfeed after the kids have gone to bed late at night. Since they are on different times of the day, they might not scroll all the way back to the previous morning to see what was posted by your company. Mixing it up will ensure you are reaching a wider range of people.
No matter if you can afford a large advertising campaign or choose to do so through a product page first, do it to your best ability. Posts or ads that are vague, sloppily prepared or lead a potential customer to a webpage that isn’t developed will only harm your business in the long run. It takes a while to attract a lot of followers but it can be very easy to lose them when you don’t have a webpage to sell the product properly. Keep the posts and ads professional and interesting and you will continue to gain business momentum from your Facebook marketing.
- Advertising on Facebook and Google
- Business Week Social Media Guide
- Free Starter Guide To Market On Myspace eBook