As a business owner, you know that you have to have a presence on Facebook. But, what type of presence should you have? How often should you post? What should you post? What is this “boost my post” button? Facebook is subtly telling you to run ads, but is it worth it? You have 295 likes on your page but it’s saying you only reached 75 people with your last post, why?
Let’s explore the reasons an organic + paid strategy may be the key to better Facebook marketing.
Organic Facebook Marketing
Organic Facebook marketing is utilizing the free tools you have access to in order to promote your business. Gaining likes and posting content will lead you down the path of reaching more people with your brand, but, furthermore, having that content liked, commented on, and shared will ultimately impact the growth and success of your Facebook marketing without paying for ads.
Think of how you use Facebook. What do you like, comment on, or share? Facebook users like videos, pictures, and talking about themselves. They like content that hits home for them. The biggest mistake business owners make with their business pages is posting too much of the wrong thing. The reality is that most people don’t care about the same 10% off promo that you post every week (until they are ready to purchase). They may not care about the pictures you’re posting of random people that they don’t know. They also probably don’t care about how awesome you think your business is.
Picture yourself in the yacht rental business where the majority of your business comes from weddings. Write a bulleted “Things to consider when you have your wedding on a yacht” post that walks them through some helpful tips that you know from being in this business. If you are a veterinarian, remind people that Santa will be there from December 6-23 to take pet pictures and ask people to post their favorite pictures of their own pets during the holidays. Providing information that is helpful to your audience and encourages engagement can make more an impact than an overly promotional post.
The key to success in organic Facebook marketing is finding a way to post content that is not all about you; it’s just a little about you. The yacht example showcases you as the expert and the value you bring is above and beyond just booking their wedding with you. The veterinarian example takes a moment to plug an event and hits on everyone’s tendency to want to share pictures and talk about themselves and their loved ones (with fur and without).
Paid Facebook Marketing
Facebook has an algorithm for their News Feed that determines what posts are shown to what people. The goal of their algorithm is to ensure their users are seeing the most relevant content for their specific behaviors and interests. With the exponential growth of content and users and businesses joining Facebook every day, they need this algorithm to ensure their users aren’t being bombarded with irrelevant content and missing out on potentially relevant content based on the information they reveal to Facebook.
Picture your own behavior and how long you spend on your News Feed. Do you look for a couple minutes several times a day? Or do you go on once a day and spend several minutes to an hour going down through your entire News Feed? Facebook has to cater to all the ways that people utilize their News Feeds. This is why Facebook advertising has become necessary. Facebook can’t show everything to everyone. There are so many options to advertise on Facebook, so don’t close your eyes and jump in just because you know you have to jump in. Go to your Insights tab and review your posts to see which had the most engagement and why.
Boosting a post is a form of Facebook advertising, but instead of setting up a campaign and choosing a campaign goal, you put a little budget toward pushing an existing post out to users outside of your immediate community. Boosting your post is completely effective, as long as you are boosting the right post to the right people. When I recently reviewed my Insights tab, I could see that a video that was posted had a reach of 1500, 85 clicks, and 45 reactions. This was far superior to any other content pieces I posted, so if I were going to invest the money in boosting a post, I would boost that one. Since this post hit so many of my friends and their friends already, I would go with the “people you choose through targeting” option for my audience (vs people who like my page and their friends).
Facebook Ad Campaigns
Use your own reporting to make data-driven, strategic decisions on how to spend your advertising dollars on Facebook. Before you spend a dime, you need to identify the goal of your campaign.
- Is it awareness, meaning you want to make your audience aware of a product or service you offer, reach people near your business, or boost your posts to extend your current reach?
- Is it consideration, meaning you are trying to drive traffic to your website, drive attendance at an event, and/or collect leads from your business?
- Is it conversions, meaning you want to increase conversions on your website, get people to visit your store, or get people to claim an offer?
Then you define your strategy. Who is your audience? Where is your audience? What message do you want your audience to take away from your ad?
Once you identify your goal and your strategy, your last step is to ensure you have a great ad. Consider your audience and your message to decide on your ad format, but keep in mind the rule of thumb that your image should contain 20% or less of text. The more text you include in your image, the less reach you will receive.
Facebook is an excellent avenue to reach your audience. With almost 2 billion monthly users and targeted audience capabilities, you’re sure to hit your customers while they are spending time on Facebook posting, liking, and sharing content!
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