Facebook is no longer the newest, shiniest site out there. Originally launched in 2004, it took off in 2006 when it allowed anyone, not just college kids, to join. Since then, it has become one of the largest and most influential social media networks in the world. Most importantly for advertisers, Facebook continues to be a very powerful presence in terms of marketing and advertising, and we’ll go over why.
Facebook gets more traffic and has more users than any of its closest competitors, meaning there are simply a lot more people on Facebook than elsewhere to see and respond to your ads and content. Facebook has an estimated 1.86 billion monthly users, which makes it bigger than Twitter, YouTube and Google+.
Facebook works well as a marketing tool because anything your business posts has the potential to be shared and viewed by people who are not your followers.
For example, you share information about a promotional giveaway, which everyone who likes your page and follows your feed sees. But then people start sharing the giveaway so their friends can see it, and then their friends might share it, and so on and so forth. That’s a lot of potential customers who might not have had any idea you existed otherwise.
Facebook ads are not only quite reasonably priced, but the targeting features they offer are extensive. You can choose to display your ads based on geographical location, age range and interests to get your ads in front of the targeted groups you think will be most likely to buy your product or service. This alone makes it an invaluable tool for marketing, because you can pick and choose who will see your ads.
Even if you would rather have users interact with your content outside of Facebook, marketing via Facebook can still drive traffic to your website. You can do this either by running an ad campaign that’s designed by Facebook’s algorithms to draw visitors to your site or post interesting, relevant content with links back to your site or blog.
Facebook not too long ago introduced another advertising tool on your own Facebook page – the cover photo. Facebook cover photos, which are easy to create and design, allow you to put important information front and center on your page to draw in and engage visitors. It’s also very easy to change out your cover photo when you come out with a new release or an event is coming up you want people to know about. Consider using a Facebook banner maker to make a customized graphic that completes your brand image.
So even though Facebook has been around for a while, it is still a very effective tool to use for your marketing, whether you buy out ad space or not. Due to the fact that it can be used for many different purposes, and any advertisements or posts will reach the maximum amount of people, Facebook is far from obsolete.
Copyright: rvlsoft / 123RF Stock Photo rvlsoft / 123RF Stock Photo
Many companies and businesses prefer to use Facebook as part of their marketing strategy while others avoid it after being disappointed by its outcome. Those who have stopped using it probably had too high expectations of it. So, before we start talking about the new ideas for marketing on Facebook, let’s quickly run through some factors that every small business should consider before choosing Facebook as their marketing option.
The first factor is setting up an overall plan. What does your business plan to achieve? It can be just finding out which product is the most popular or it can be a combination of many elements such as sales, answering questions, solving problems, or brand building.
Then you need to think about budget. Creating a Facebook page may be free of charge, but it’s also free for your competitors. If you want your brand to stand out you need to be creative but you also may want to invest in social media experts or sponsor stories.
Schedule is another important factor. You need to find out when your fans are on Facebook. What good is advertising if no one can see it? Think about school hours, work, holidays etc. and post only if you know that your fans will be active on Facebook and able to see it.
Last but not least, there is frequency. This concerns how much you post and how often you connect with your fans. A good idea is setting up a rate at which you interact and making it constant. Be careful not to be too frequent and also don’t let your fans forget that you are there.
So, having this in mind, here are some new Facebook marketing ideas that will make your brand shine and stand out in front of the competition:
One new important feature of Facebook for all marketers is displaying cover photos of people your friends add as friends in your news feed. This also works for pages your friends like and that’s why it is important.
So, imagine someone likes the fan page of your brand on Facebook. All of their friends will be able to see your cover photo in their news feed. The cover photo then works as an add banner and should be treated that way, meaning you should give serious thought on what it could look like.
Making it look appealing is obvious, even without the new Facebook feature. Other than that, consider placing a discount or a free offer. Having a celebrity endorse your brand on the cover is also very appealing but may be problematic for smaller businesses. Whatever you choose, make sure it will attract people’s attention so that they click on it and eventually become new fans of your brand.
This feature only works for local businesses, so if you created your Facebook page under the category ”Local Business or Place” be sure to turn on the check-in option. This is done by adding your company’s address while creating the page and your fans will be able to check-in.
This feature can do wonders for your business by increasing the preference for the brand and maybe even boosting sales. All you need to do is encourage your fans to check-in on their visit.
Think about giving out prizes or discounts for every 100th visitor or even less. There are other ideas as well but rewarding your customers for loyalty is often the best thing to do and it will ensure that they stay satisfied and share their experiences.
One of the best things about advertising on Facebook is that you can use it as a free customer service platform at the same time. Some people even find the Facebook page to be of more help than the company’s website. This Facebook popularity creates an option for customer engagement, and everyone knows how important that is to businesses all around.
Since everyone can see your name when you post on the timeline of a page, some companies create apps that take you to a form which you can fill and remain anonymous. This is excellent for people who want to post complaints, ask questions or other inquiries. Posting directly on timeline is still available of course, and often good for quick feedback.
One of the most popular ways of getting fans to interact is organizing prize contests. Ask fans to comment on your product or share interesting pictures that include it. Then, give out prizes to one or more fans by the rules you create for the contest.
About the author:
Katrina Barrow writes about small business, creative marketing, digital marketing and social media marketing. She is always searching for new ideas online. This article was inspired by tips on how to use facebook to promote your business.
A good Facebook post can engage your customer base, attract new clients, and provide your audience with information about any goods and services that you offer. If you are wondering how to create a good post, one which will prompt shares, comments, and likes, here are 7 tactics which can make a Social Media Facebook post more attractive.
Brighten up any Facebook post with an effective and colorful image which will help to sell a particular service that you are offering. Include a simple caption or brief description of what the photo is trying to convey. You could even include an external link to your blog or website, which can be an effective promotional tool if the post is about a particular product or service that you are trying to promote. The image should be large enough to attract your audience and show off the product in the best possible light.
An effective way to get people talking about your product or any service you are offering is to pose a question to other Facebook users. For example, if you are promoting the services of a gym that you own, you could include a question such as, “What is your favorite music to work out to?”. This question can provoke debate and get more users to like and share your post.
Instead of writing long pieces of information about a product, instead write a brief description which focuses on a particular aspect of the item. Use humor as a way to engage your readers, or incorporate an interesting quotation or fun fact about something that relates to the product. Long, boring pieces of text will often be overlooked so focus on developing new and innovate content which will attract more likes and comments.
Consider using a piece of recent news that is directly linked to your product or service in order to encourage discussion and debate. For example, if you are selling biking equipment, link to an external news source which recently featured a story about the health benefits of bike riding or a famous celebrity who was photographed riding a bike.
Another way to prompt more likes and comments is to write a Social Media Facebook post which features information about a particular holiday or event, such as Halloween or Christmas. This can also be beneficial if you have a particular promotion on during this time of the year. Include information about why your product or service would be particularly useful during a certain time of the year. For example, if you run a dry-cleaning business, note the importance of having dry-cleaned clothes for a New Year’s Eve party.
Facebook now allows users to incorporate hashtags into their post, and you will be able to increase the awareness of your brand or campaign by using this effective promotional feature. Use a tag which includes a common search term in order to improve the visibility of your Facebook post, and make tags specific to a particular promotion or sale that you wish to increase the awareness of. You may be able to increase the number of people who read your Social Media Post if you use hashtags effectively, as these will show up in search results for people who are searching for a particular key word or phrase.
One great way to provoke discussion, likes and shares is to use a Facebook post to promote a competition or give-away. You could perhaps run a caption competition where users will need to caption a funny photograph or image. Or you could post a trivia question about your business and give a prize to the user who correctly guesses the right answer. To limit costs, only give away a prize that is small in monetary value but unique, such as a T-shirt or mug with the logo of your business printed on the front. A limited edition item like this can see more entries to the competition and help to promote the services or goods of your website in a fun and engaging way.
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If you would have had an inkling of social media’s vast success only a few short years ago, then the odds are good that you would have put stock in companies like Facebook and Twitter and would be wildly rich now. The truth is that few saw this social media invasion coming. And what’s more: Even in 2010, when the large social networks were already thoroughly established, many still believed they were simple come-and-go trend sites.
Maybe a site like MySpace gives precedent for believing that social media is a fad you can afford to pass up, but that’s much more the exception than the rule. Facebook has gained more and more steam after every passing year, consistently revamping the site to give users what they want while offering marketers what they need.
Facebook is a start-up brand’s dream. Low-cost, wide-reaching marketing that’s not only easy to figure out and to implement, but the features here are wholly customizable and allow for your brand to create a new niche rather than just standing out in an existing one. So if you haven’t taken your brand to Facebook yet, now’s a great time to get started.
Let’s look at some of the top benefits a brand can experience by creating a social media presence.
When you’re advertising using Facebook and other popular social media sites, engaging with your audience becomes much easier. This is especially true as time passes and marketer-friendly updates are released in droves. For instance, you can take a simplistic Facebook Page Post on your Timeline and turn this into an incredibly effective, specifically targeted ad by choosing an option like “Promoted Post.” You can use campaign splitting features in third-party apps to reach out to a much larger market while simultaneously narrowing the scope (as in who sees the ad). And the medium is ideal for engagement; “liking,” sharing, commenting, taking something viral, creating memes and infographics out of material – high-quality, relevant material is gobbled up by social users.
Say that you wanted to set up a brand-sponsored gathering, event or something similar to get your name out there. This is the modern-day version of the “grand opening” perhaps. Well, social networking allows you to coordinate this in real time and down to the last, finest detail. It also reaches exponentially more people than an ad in a newspaper or a pamphlet could ever reach. Then there’s the cooperation aspect of social media. Whether you’re working together with another business to target more customers, or if your fans are helping you get your brand out there through sharing, social networking connects you to a useful community.
It’s hard for an American brand to reach out internationally unless the brand is large, wealthy and popular. On-location businesses will have to experience massive growth within their intended niche before branching out. This isn’t the case with social media. You can target people from all around the globe easily and effectively by using campaign splitting tactics, narrowing features, attractive apps for opt-ins, and an endless range of materials to draw people to your brand.
If Facebook was as far as you took your social media marketing, that may be as far as you would have to take it. And with so many apps, plug-ins, protocols, and streamlined third-party apps that run alongside and coordinate with your page, the marketing structure of your entire brand could be handled neatly and quickly from one centralized location. This increases productivity, which trickles down into increasing your brand’s effectiveness.
Everyone wants a hefty return of investment through ads on Facebook. No businessperson invests without expecting high ROI. With Facebook, this is made possible not only due to the lower advertising costs, but also the fact that you can supplement your paid advertising through many organic methods. Your return on investment can skyrocket by simply using solid branding principles.
Keep in mind that all the above benefits hold true for the future. As more updates are released and as more trends are followed through on mega networks like Facebook, everything from engagement and cooperation to international targeting and ROI will increase in effectiveness.
We’re only seeing the beginning stages of what social media is going to become. A brand taking advantage of this platform stands to benefit tremendously if only that brand takes the social networking approach seriously.
Author Bio: Craig Robinson, Editor at Qwaya.com – a Facebook campaign tool. Besides writing about marketing on Facebook, Craig also writes about social context and customer engagement online.
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Most businesses rely heavily on Facebook for their social media marketing strategies, which can be an effective practice. Relying solely on Facebook social marketing, however, can also be a huge mistake. You should try to maintain an arsenal of several marketing strategies for your business that go beyond Facebook to fully reach your audience and avoid leaning on tools that may soon be obsolete. Facebook is wonderful but their are other outlets out there.
Businesses used to be able to purchase Facebook marketing through sidebar advertisements. As businesses pull sidebar ad contracts from Facebook, it has become apparent that many users simply ignore the sidebar ads altogether. Though they may be worth purchasing, depending upon your target demographic, they should certainly not be the be-all, end-all to your marketing strategy. Facebook should be one ingredient in your marketing mix.
Though more and more people are using Facebook, it’s not the favorite place to be as it once was. It has become more integrated with businesses, offering ads even in users’ news feeds much to their great annoyance. Social media like Twitter, Pinterest, and Tumblr have rapidly become the new best loved sites and great alternative choices. Other platforms, such as Square and Eventbrite, are growing in popularity as well.
Many of your customers probably cannot even view Facebook on their mobile devices which is becoming the most popular way to view content. Facebook website marketing won’t get you anywhere if the majority of people in your target market use their mobile phones to access information. That’s where social networks like Twitter, which only offer tiny pieces of digestible information at a time, come in quite handy.
Don’t believe us?
Or you could simply say no metrics. It can be very difficult to discern whether or not your Facebook website marketing is really getting through to your audience without decent metric measurements. You can’t customize your page or monitor as much as you would like, and while using “likes” and comments may be helpful for research, they ultimately do not provide you with answers regarding how engaged your customers are with your actual product.
From bad press over comments made to continuing privacy and photo sharing issues, Facebook users are continually losing faith in their old favorite social hub. Teens, one of the largest target market groups, are leaving the site as well. Even when news may be incorrect, the impression and distrust lasts with your customers. If you want to build trust with your customers, you may not want to align any, or at least all, of your business strategies with Facebook marketing.
Since only Facebook investors own the company, you really have no say about what the site can do to your business page or ads in general. When you utilize Facebook marketing, you may be giving up the control you would normally own over marketing in other venues, particularly those you pay for. As Facebook constantly changes, from its layout to its policy, investing your time and money there could prove to be risky in the future of your business.
Facebook marketing can be a simple, cheap way to spread the word about your business. You don’t have to delete your Facebook page just because it’s not a perfect platform for your marketing strategies. Venturing out into other areas instead of placing all of your eggs in a single basket, however, is a wise idea.
Everyone wants to know exactly how they should be using Facebook in order to maximize advertising dollars spent and efforts exhorted. Aaron Lee, a writer for Mashable and social media manager at Binkd Promotion recently put together a great content piece on how to get people to engage on Facebook.
Launching a Facebook fan page is one small part of the equation, getting those fans to stop by and speak up is a whole other story. Facebook engagement effectiveness all depends on what type of approach you take to communicate with your fans. In order to keep building your voice and your Facebook page you are going to have to engage your audience in some sort of fashion eventually.
Aaron breaks it down into 6 different efforts:
Let’s dig deeper into these because we think this is a great list to get your fans typing away.
Photos are extremely important when it comes to Facebook marketing. Depending on what type of business it is the better the image the better the click through rate if that image is connected with some sort of destination on the other end. It could also be a funny photo that connects emotionally with your audience.
Who doesn’t like to engage in a fun game that might give them a chuckle? This effort works especially well if you have loyal fans on your website. Set up a fill in the blank contest to get your Facebook fans engaged and thinking.
If the image you place on your Facebook wall is good enough people will leave comments. You have to find an image that will have some sort of connection with your Facebook fans. Entice them in some sort of way to get those comments filling up.
There is no better way to get an audience to engage with you on Facebook than simply asking a question. Ask the right question and that particular posting could generate answers for a very long time. Who doesn’t like tips? Especially if those tips help someone’s life or career. Good tips will keep an audience engaged for quite a while.
Quotes from influential figures or people can really touch the heart of certain Facebook fans.
If you haven’t noticed Facebook timeline is now mandatory for everyone. Don’t worry though because it is actually a nice thing to see the timeline on business pages. What a better way to showcase your businesses growth than to display it in a nice little timeline right? I know many marketers and businesses are going to soon wonder how they can customize their Facebook timeline pages in order to give them that personal touch.
Here is a Facebook video on how you can do just that.
We all know and understand the importance of social sharing and where it has come from but have you ever heard just how crazy the numbers behind it are from the mouth of Facebook? In this video Mark Zuckerberg describes some of the formula and the numbers behind how people share really anything online.