Using Facebook to market your local business online is a great way to build your brand and share the life of your brand. But, it’s a lot to stay on top of! Not only is Facebook constantly changing and updating their site, but there are also a variety of tactics and tools you can use to engage with people on Facebook. So, we sat down with some of our ReachCast Web Presence Professionals, who are managing social media for local businesses every day, to share their top tips for Facebook. Here’s what they shared!

1. Share About More than Just Your Business – “Not every post needs to be created by you or related to your business. Remember that Facebook is a social site where people go to be informed and entertained. If you’re looking for an easy way to boost engagement, simply share a funny YouTube video or a profound article. Showing your fans that you care about what’s going on is good for your page AND for your business. Remember to ask yourself: ‘Would I want to “Like” my own page?’ If the answer is no, then you need to rethink your content strategy. Have fun with it and your customers will too!” Web Presence Professional Vanessa Mosharaf

2. Spread the Word About Your Page to Customers and Contacts – “The best way to gain more Facebook followers is to alert everyone you’re connected to about your new page.  Whether you offer a giveaway, coupon, donation, or simply share news and events, make sure everyone you know knows about your page! Use different tools, like emails, signage, and other social networks to spread the word. Also, don’t be afraid to ask your personal friends and connections to ‘Like’ your page and leave a comment. This will help their friends discover your brand too and will extend your social discoverability to new people.” – Web Presence Professional Jennifer Holub

3. Respond To Everyone – “Building a local social following can be much like building a personal friendship. If a friend of yours calls or sends you text messages and you never respond, that person might not consider you a friend much longer. Furthermore, if you ask that friend for a favor it is likely they will ignore your request. Think about engaging with fans on Facebook the same way. Shares, ‘likes,’ and comments from Facebook fans are critical in spreading your brand, so local businesses can benefit by paying attention to their social followers, and by capitalizing on every opportunity to make them feel appreciated.” Web Presence Professional Justin Snasel

4. Create a Fan Gate Page to Boost “Likes” – “ As a business, setting up a welcome page on your Facebook account is a best practice. One effective tip for generating more ‘Likes’ is to have a call-to-action on that welcome page directing new visitors to ‘Like’ your page. You can even create an offer on your welcome page, so that people who click ‘Like’ will then see an offer, coupon, or other ‘fan-gated’ content.  There are different tools that you can use to do this, and we have the ability to create welcome page offers through ReachCast. This is a great, effective tool to make sure that visitors to your Facebook page also become ‘Likes’ so you can continue engaging with them on the site.”  Web Presence Professional Nick Marino Jr.

5. Use Facebook to Share Positive Business Reviews – Did you know that you can share positive reviews about your business on Facebook? You can post links to them to your wall, or create a tab specifically for reviews. Here’s a handy trick you can use to easily share reviews in addition to sharing links to them on your wall: “Since ReachCast creates an RSS feed of your reviews, you can use the Social RSS app on your Facebook fan page to create a tab specifically for reviews.  This can help your Facebook page rank well in Google searches for ‘business name + review!’ It’s great that searchers can find positive reviews through a simple search and that it leads the searcher to the brand’s Facebook page, which offers the opportunity for new fans and interaction with the content!” – Web Presence Professional Sam Davis

Is your business using Facebook to connect with consumers and build buzz with customers? What tips or best practices have you discovered for getting more out of your Facebook presence? Share your ideas in a comment!

Author: Tiffany Monhollon

As the lead blogger for ReachCast, Tiffany shares practical tips and insights about reaching consumers across the web. Follow her on Twitter and Google+.