Facebook can be a difficult tool to handle and knowing how to use the algorithm and work with Facebook advertising can be a challenge. However, if done correctly, it can be rewarding.
(Approximately a 8 minute read)
Facebook, the social platform that has been around for years now but, is it still alive? Currently, one of the world’s most powerful marketing platforms is Facebook and when you start to grasp the concepts around what appeals to the right people, what makes your page shareable and how to capture the market through it, Facebook becomes a truly viable marketing anchor.
As you most likely already know Facebook is the biggest network in the world with around 2.1 billion users, with 1.6 billion who are active daily on a recurring basis. with these numbers, it comes as no surprise that Facebook continues to be the reigning king year on year.
They have not been the best of the best for over a decade for doing any less and it’s now more than just a place for meeting old school friends. It’s become an opportunity, a venue for businesses to market themselves through interaction and promotion.
Who is your target audience?
Generating millions of views and clicks can be extremely difficult. However, with the right content and dedication, it is far from impossible. One of the key things you have to first work out is: Who are you marketing too? Who are your target audience? How are you going to be able to attract them? and, Who is going to share and appreciate your content?
It is very important that this is seriously considered in the first steps of your marketing process. Look towards a target age group or location depending on the nature of your business. Without doing so, businesses will usually design content, marketing and advertising to attract themselves and what they like. So many businesses make this mistake instead of focusing on the customers they want to attract.
It’s even in the way that you word your advertising. Take these examples:
1. ‘Gravitai is a marketing automation lab. We help people implement and understand their marketing automation, even if they have no idea what they are doing.’
2. ‘Gravitai is a marketing automation lab. We help you implement and understand your marketing automation, even if you don’t have a lot of experience.’
The second version of the sentence is much more viable as it caters to the individual rather than everyone. Looking toward the latter part of the statement, provides support rather than telling the potential customer they’re an idiot. For example Gravitai could still help implement a marketing cloud project even if they….
- Have never used marketing cloud
- Don’t know how marketing cloud could be implemented in their company or organisation
However, those ‘even if’ statements are what sell your products. As, we previously mentioned; before you get started growing your Facebook page, you need to understand your ideal customer, where they are what they will buy.
Is your audience even on Facebook?
Before you dive head first into the strategies of obtaining your audience, consider this; Are they actually on Facebook? With 1.5 Billion people being on the platform, they most likely are. With a higher percentage of users being younger (rather than older) according to a recent survey, whoever you are targeting, there will be more than enough people to capture. The only platform in which currently ranks higher in terms of usage rates is Youtube.
Building your page
There are some main strategies that you can follow to integrate and build your page through Facebook. You could build your page around a person or lifestyle, around a topic or even around yourself, your company or product. There are pros and cons to all options.
A Facebook page is a great, free tool for marketing. This is where small businesses can really take charge of a media platforms such as Facebook – not just through product offerings and services but, by also sharing content, links, images and posts. This gives a fully customisable and personalised page enabling the businesses, organisations and companies to provide a better concept and understanding of their services. Your Facebook page is also a great spot to develop your brand identity and really refine your bussiness. A nice mix of humor, educational resources, posts and updates are the best way to capture your audience.
Building up your page through a person or lifestyle
If you’re looking towards building up your page to focus around a particular person of lifestyle, you can look towards these examples below:
- Men in their 50’s, who earn over £50k each year
- People with children, who are in still in some form of education
- People in their 20’s who like computers and technology
Whoever this person is, you need to understand their hopes, dreams and weaknesses. You need to understand your customer inside out and yes, it is much easier to say than it actually is. This can be a really effective strategy, however, it needs to be approached in the right way and in a lot of ways, you could be very similar to this person.
If you are creating a page targeting people between 20 – 40, who are into computers and YOU own basically everything that has a screen, that’s okay! However, you need to keep in them mind when doing so and talk to your audience directly to understand them. Some of your audience may be very similar to you and so, have a commonality which instantly gives you an advantage.
In a nutshell, you need to know what is important to your audience right now.
Build your page around a single topic
Another way is to focus your page around a single, specific topic. For a lot of people, this is the go to format and the easiest way to grow an audience. This works for all social media platforms such as Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn etc. When focusing on a single topic, this tends to refer towards the following :
- Marketing Cloud
- Marketing Automation
- Email marketing
- Social media
This is all that is required!
You are making content specifically for people who are interested, it doesn’t make you stupid, it just makes you honest.
Anyone who views this already knows if they are interested. You’d be surprised just how big of an audience you have grown through such niche topics. Make sure you don’t go off topic, in fact, make sure that you keep very much ON topic and brand. If you have a page dedicated to marketing automation, then posting images of dogs and cats on there will not be suitable.
Build your page around yourself, your company or your product
The final way is to create your page all about you and this is what people will naturally default towards. Take our Facebook page for example.
A page like this is perfect but, a few things do need to be established here. Even if your page is focused on your product or service, it should never be entirely about you.
You will also want to include content relevant to that topic or lifestyle which not only appeals to your audience but, also content that they can relate to. Take our blogs for example, these are published through our website and then broadcast through to our social media portals twice a week. Our blogs contain information or news about what we are about or, are interested in and what we think you would enjoy. It is not always about our products.
If you want to build up a brand, then this is a perfect way to go about it. It will grow faster if you focus on a single topic and from this, you can pivot around and explore after you have built up your audience.
What makes you niche
So, you know who your audience is and you have also chosen the topic, brand, service or product that you are going to create your page for. The next step is hardest, you’re going to need to make yourself unique.
Making sure that your page oozes appeal is like wearing a niche sticker on your forehead. However, you also need to ensure your page passes the ‘blink test’ is key. This, in short, is getting people to click on your logo and not scroll past it in one blink. It’s a simple problem but, it is a big one.
Here is an example of a page that would be easy to scroll right past:
Blink your eyes and it’s gone. Start to break down your page in to elements:
- Page title
You want your page title to be clear and precise. It also needs to be relatable to your audience. One simple way of doing this would be to look at your page and audience then think; What would my audience call themselves?
- Profile picture
When choosing a profile picture, there are two things that you should keep in mind. Firstly, a small version of this image is going to show up next to ALL the posts that you make through Facebook. An overly detailed logos will become indistinguishable to your audience and any interaction as a high potential to be missed. Secondly, this logo is what makes you instantly identifiable. Remember that your image is going to show up right next to your page title and will usually be want defines you as a brand or business. Think of all the well known logos out there, they all started as a simple idea and are now easily identifiable. If you use this logo on all of your profile pictures, you will be taking maximum advantage to this “branding”.
This section is prominently placed in below your company logo. This is your chance to let your audience see who you are, what you can do for them and what makes you better than all the other companies out there offering the same services. Content that will separate you from the standard companies out there is the key to really promoting yourself and making you memorable. Highlighting contact information is also a good way to populate you’re about page.
Make your audience ‘feel’ something
This is the point where you should start to post content. If you have done everything else and not started, then you should really start to think about what to put out there. Be careful with the wording, personal opinion and positioning. This content can be the difference between a successful post and an internet meme – you don’t want to be known for falling on you face!
Every piece of content you post, should teach your reader something new and ultimately, feel good. If you manage to succeed in achieving those points, you could get a share or two out of them and the nature of social media will see that chain continue and spread to more people. Something to think about when posting content; What way are you going to appear to your audience? You need to consider how are you going to be portrayed towards them. Clean up your image, appear more creative and get organised.
Ah, Facebook advertising… it has its moments.
A great platform however, can feel like you are paying for numbers if not done right. Facebook offers its own form of advertising with their Facebook Ads and these appear in the side columns of the Facebook site, as well as promotional advertising on your feed.
These ads are referred to as Marketplace ads. Simple adverts that include a headline, image and a CTA (or some form of click through link). Implementing Facebook advertising into your business and page, once set up, is a possible technique of driving up the number of website clicks.
Facebook does not release information about their ads so, it is hard to see or understand how well they actually do. Each business thrives differently. Facebook advertising includes:
- Demographic targeting by Facebook depending on characteristics of audience
- The ability set ad budgets and advertise different content and posts
- Ad testing to see and compare design and setup
- Ad performance and measuring tools that built in through analytics and data.
Using Facebook advertising increases your like ratio. This can be very beneficial as ‘likes’ refer to followers and your marketing noise causing your catchment to increase. This results in more users interacting with you and your brand, forming relationships and connections which ultimately translates into more conversions for your content.
Running a contest, sweepstake or promotion on Facebook is a massive marketing tactic and is an amazing way to get your audience engaged and involved. It is also very effective in increasing your base audience and brand awareness.
However, these methods can’t be hosted through Facebook itself but, can be set up through third party applications and redirected to a Facebook page. There are loads of paid tools to help this along with an equal amount of open source applications.
Facebook promoted posts allow an owner (and moderators) of a page to have individual Facebook posts reach an increased number of users. Using promoted posts provides the best coverage as you will increase your chances of your casual audience becoming legitimate leads an then, these leads becoming conversions. This hand-in-hand conversion increases sales and as an obvious result, income for your business.
Should you have to pay to ensure that your post is seen by followers though? If someone has liked your page then naturally, shouldn’t they see your posts in their feed!?
Unfortunately, no. While there is a highly likelihood, there is no guarantee that a follower will see it, as their feed could be swamped by other posts – along with the timing of these posts. Facebook promoted posts however, are shown to existing followers (and hose who have followed in the past) along with reaching friends of these followers or even, associated people. It’s all about conversion rate.
A sponsored story is a type/style of Facebook advertisement that shows user interactions such as activity. These stories seeks to capitalise or a marketing concept of word of mouth. You’ve probably seen Connor McGregor on some form of social media promoting Hi-Smile… this is the prefect example of a “user experience” advertising technique.
If a user sees that multiple friends are liking a certain type of content, page or person, it might entice them to click and look at that content. They are now more inclined to pay attention. The reasoning behind sponsored stories is have a user take the same action as their friends.
We’ve all been guilty of seeing a post that Karen has liked about a revolutionary weight loss system and gone “Hmm, wonder how that works?” …*click*
Advertisers can show friends likes and can even display claims and offers towards the users. This action takes place once a friend has liked a page or claimed an offer and is being carried out by an automation which then posts this content to their friend list thus, increasing marketing range.
Marketing and promotional stories not only apply to likes and offers. Facebook claim that stories have a 46% higher CTR rate than regular marketing adverts, making them a serious marketing tool. Facebook adverts can be easily created through the Facebook ad flow, which is perfect. The AI is brilliant and creating advertisements could not be easier.
It’s all an automated process!
Job advertising through Facebook
Posting jobs or roles to Facebook couldn’t be easier. With “featured now” being launched in the last few years, posting jobs to Facebook is free! Advertising them by yourself through your own network is brilliant as no costs are involved and this is great for small businesses.
The benefits to job advertising on Facebook is that this type of post can be shared through current employees, friends, family etc… for nothing. Facebook make their money through job advertising by promoting these jobs. A very detailed system in which the role can be advertised in different areas or, to a certain type of person. Facebook have created and produced this perfectly.
Of course, this is not a typical marketing tool but, it can be very helpful for looking to hire someone. Freelancing is perfect for this and offers another way for you to utilise the massive power of Facebook watching your company grow.
One last tip. Do NOT go for the hard sell through Facebook
Facebook, at its core, is a social network for communicating and talking to your friends and family. Despite all of the advertising that has now been implemented, checking out photos, videos and joining in on conversations is becoming apart of the community rather than a business trying to sell you a service or product.
Using advertising slogans and posting repeatedly is the hard sell. Trying to get that hard sell on a social marketing platform, let alone Facebook, is incredibly difficult and could be a waste of your time and effort.
Go and grow
Facebook is not just a powerful tool that small and big businesses can utilise. It’s also really flexible and no matter the type of company you run, the amount of marketing options (along with the ability to be able to tailor your marketing efforts) is a perfect fit for your company. Though it can take time to grow, along with also understanding all the features that come with Facebook advertising, a simple design and process will allow growth at potentially a rapid pace… which is rare in social media!
All that is required is practice. It is all about steady growth, you don’t just build a Facebook page and have it become successful overnight. It does take time to grow much like a tree which doesn’t just burst out of the ground, it can take years to mature . You have to water and nurture it, give it the correct space and if you do it correctly then you will get a massive gleaming result from it (and potentially fruit!).
Take care of it, it will flourish. Get growing!
Grow more! Check out our blogs ‘7 tips of navigating the maze of digital marketing‘ or ‘7 ways to increase traffic towards your website‘ to increase traffic and audience