I set a challenge within my networking group, Lemur Linkup, to see if we could increase our Facebook business page likes by 250. I gave them 36 days, which meant roughly 7 new likes per day. Although social media marketing isn’t all about the numbers game it is clear the more people who like your page the better reach you will ultimately achieve.
18 businesses including myself jumped on board with the challenge, all with varying followers from 86 to 4687. 100 is the magic number on Facebook, once you hit 100 you have access to the business page insights, which enables you to tailor your content in a more effective manner. You can see what followers engage with and when and it’s really useful for designing your content marketing plan.
Formula 4-1-1 :
At Sage Summit, Wendy van Gilst, talked about the formula 4-1-1.
4 posts about support and advice, 1 product/direct link post and 1 human contact based post. I think I’m pretty good at this plus I’ve noticed if I use a photo of my girls to highlight my status or even direct people to my website I get far more interaction than using business styled images. For example I posted a link to a blog I’d written on filing your Tax Return with an image of Megan pulling a face (see below) and this had much better interaction than the time I posted it with a tax return form image.
Advice, Triggers, Emotions and Practical Value :
Ideally you should post 4 updates providing advice and support as this helps build trust. You are able to show your expertise and position yourself as a thought leader in your genre. I also believe that providing content that helps others means followers are more likely to engage with you as they respond either to say thanks for the tips, or ask a further question or pass the knowledge via tagging to a friend.
Think about your language, using simple words and non industry wording will make it much easier for your followers to engage and make real conversations with you. You also avoid sounding like a pompous arse and become far more relatable. Use content people recognise and ultimately make people smile.
Emotions can play a vital role in how people respond use imagery and content that evokes emotional responses. Storytelling can be a great tool in producing emotional responses and engaging with your customers. Providing practical tips to help your potential customers is an important factor in developing relationships. Think outside the box
Now we have a basic idea of the mechanics to developing a content schedule for Facebook based upon the 4-1-1 rule lets go through some basic tips and start a content marketing plan.
20 Facebook Business Page tips to help increase your following :
- Like Your Page? : Sounds a bit narcissistic but seriously you should like your page and also like your content as this helps with your reach. (I don’t do it straight away maybe a few hours later once people have interacted so you don’t look too crazy!)
- Invite Your friends : Be savvy though, you don’t want to upset your chums, nor do you want people to like it who won’t interact or gain value from you.
- Check Your Interactions : Go through your last few posts ensure everyone who has interacted likes the page. Wondering how to do this? Simple, click on the likes/reactions for the post and a list of people who interacted will pop up. The list will have either INVITE or LIKE next to the name. If it says INVITE then do it! The person has already showed an interest in the business so grab them! Or use your insights to find the top interacted posts (click on see more as the default only shows 5 posts, then click on engagement to put the highest engaged on top. Click on post reactions which will open up a new window from there follow the same instructions to invite)
- Actually post something! : You can’t expect people to interact with you if you aren’t posting. Take a look in your insights and see what time of the day you get the most interaction. Click on the reach section, this will change the order from chronological (date) to highest reach. From this you can see your top posts. What are they? Status updates? Images? Video? Replicate the content your users enjoy.
- Connect Your Profile : On your personal profile you have the ability in the work section to link to your Facebook Business Page. This then forms part of your public information providing people with a way in which to contact/engage with you. Girl Knows Tech has a further 4 more ways to promote/link your business/blog to your personal Facebook page : How to promote your blog on your Facebook profile
- Be Your Business : It can be easy to see content and comment as your personal profile, try and leave a comment on a page as your business page. This encourages people to click and check your business out.
- Join in with # : There are quite a few on Facebook that can make up most of your weekly content plan. #ThrowbackThursday why not post a photo of your first product? First office? Anything from years ago, behind the scenes work really well as people like to see how your business has changed and grown. Other tags include #FollowFriday shout out to pages you like. #WednesdayWisdom share a tip/advice around your genre.
- Share someone else’s content : Make sure it’s relevant and make sure it’s popular. If the content has lots of comments and likes you basically know it will do well on your page. Sharing content is a great way to connect with others in a similar industry to you and provide advice and support from another point of view.
- Housekeeping : Check the about us section. Have you filled in all the boxes? Are you using keywords in the description? Do you have an email and website address listed (you’d be surprised how many don’t)? Have you chosen an option for your Facebook button? You can have contact us, sign up, shop now ….
- Tweet About It : If you are using Twitter take a screen shot of your Facebook page and tweet your Facebook url. This way your direct an already engaged audience over to another. Schedule this tweet for once a week.
— Joanne Dewberry (@CharlieMoos) April 27, 2017
- Have you listed any milestones? : Personally I wouldn’t use ones like reached 1000 likes! Try making them more compelling use them to build your brand and story. “Taught my first silversmith course” or “Spoke at Lemur LinkUp Networking Group” “Took my 1000th customers photos”.
- Page Tips : Spend a minute reading your page tips (they appear in the right hand side of your biz page home feed).
- Facebook widget : Why not add a Facebook widget to your website. Website visitors can see your last few Facebook posts and like your business page without even leaving your website.
- Set up Facebook Authorship on WordPress : Great if someone shares your post on their page directly from your website as a linked name is attached to any shares of that content on Facebook. This is turn allows viewers to see the author and potentially follow them. It’s also handy when you write for other wordpress sites for example shares on my Britmums Mums in Business Round-up are linked to my Facebook Business page as I’m the author.
- Tag People/Businesses in Images : Not random people that’s just weird, but anyone relevant to the photo, hey I tag myself in all of mine! Don’t forget to use the locations too all this helps with visibility.
- Reviews Tab : Email ALL your previous customers today and ask them to please leave you a review. Reviews really help strengthen your brand and increase your visibility in Facebook searches
- Check In : If you have this option open then check in, say your at work today. Encourage anyone else with you to check in too.
- Utilising Events : Develop a way to get potential customers to like your page, check in with you or leave a review. This could be anything from a poster at your place of work or make it part of your sales pitch. “For news updates like me on Facebook”. Grab customers data ie. email address in the form of sign up to my newsletter or enter a prize draw that way you can send out a follow you on Facebook. (Just FB don’t overwhelm with too much info.)
- Join in with Facebook threads : If you haven’t done it before you basically add the URL for a post you want people to comment or like depending on group/thread rules/preferences. These are massive on the blogging scene you can find weekly or daily threads. Remember these are reciprocal. How do you find the post URL? Click on the time stamp for the post you want to share which will open a new window with the permalink for that post. Whilst this doesn’t mean you will increase page likes, it will help with reach and of course you can then go back to point 3 and invite those who interacted to like your page.
- Share Your content : Instead of sharing a blog post link into multiple Facebook groups consider sharing the post from your Facebook Business page this way you increase your reach and direct people to your page first rather than to your website. Make sure you comply with the rules of the group and that what you are sharing adds value to the people in the group, don’t just randomly share. Also add a comment with the share and make sure this is personalised otherwise you might look like a link dumper to Facebook.
Challenge Results :
The 18 Facebook Business Pages involved increased 17 – 144 although no-one reached the 250 target (I did a week or so after) everyone saw a significant increase in their reach and interaction. Which in the grand scheme of things is better than number of followers. Everyone also learnt something about running their page and noted things about their audience. Here are a few quotes.
Samantha Prewett Photography : By doing Joanne’s challenge my Facebook new likes growth has been more than double what it usually grows. I am fairly active on here anyway so it was even more of a challenge for me to increase my growth of new likers. But I have managed it with all her great tips, many of which I am continuing to use. Such as, themed days #ThrowbackThursday, #FollowFriday, #WednesdayWisdom. Those were all new to me. Also commenting on others posts as my business, that’s something I hadn’t even thought about doing before. (increased by 77)
I already followed a lot of the tips from Joanne so my weekly growth was about the same as normal. I think you need to be unique and try to capture people’s imagination. Also regularly post. Debbie Creative Clay for All (increased by 48)
Grainne Times to Treasure : I would say network little and often this has really helped raise my profile. Giveaways helped me become more visible and increased my reach and gain a few more likes. I now always check to see if all those who have liked a post actually liked my page, if they haven’t I invite them. I do this with every single post and will continue to do so. Post regularly and consistently everyday at optimum times (check insights) scheduling posts can help with this if your busy with life. I found that by asking my followers to help me out and spread the word with their family and friends really helped. I had over 70 shares of that particular post. And loads more likes and enquiries. I also held mini networking posts on my business page to encourage more participation and engagement from other businesses. One thing I’m definitely going to try and do more of is visit and comment on other pages as my business page. Thanks so much to Joanne and all the others who left nuggets of wisdom for the tips and advice, it really helped motivate me to keep going. (Increased by 144 and the winner of the challenge)
To pay more attention to my Insights on when the best time of day to post to my audience. You can post everyday but the reach isn’t great if not done at the right time of day. Nichola Hannaford Independent Phoenix Trader (increased by 20)
Wowzers apologies for such a super long post! And if you aren’t already please do check me out on Facebook.