When it comes to building your brand online, I recommend social media as part of your marketing plan. For small business, entrepreneurs and startups it is the perfect way to start creating an audience for what you do or offer.
Social media pages can be a bit overwhelming to setup and there are so many new social networks to choose from. For most businesses, I would recommend starting with Facebook, and then considering at least two of the following; Twitter, LinkedIn, Pinterest or Instagram.
LinkedIn and Twitter are looking to be the best for content marketing in 2016, overtaking Facebook in terms of audience engagement. Instagram and Pinterest are great for sharing images of your brand, giving it a personality as well as likable content.
A Facebook page for your business is super simple to setup. First, sign in to your Facebook account like you would normally do. I assume you have a Facebook account here, but if not, visit Facebook.com and sign up.
Once you have logged in, in the main drop-down menu at the top right of your page, select CREATE PAGE.
You will then be presented with a page to select your type of business. Choose what suits your business best. If your business has a physical address or shop, be sure to select local business as this will allow people to check in, add reviews and also creates a map and location on your about section.
From here Facebook just asks a little more about your business. Fill in as much as you can, although remembering you can also update or add to this later after the page is created.
Facebook will prompt you to like your own page first, as well as sharing it with fiends and doing some Facebook ads for it. For now, I would recommend skipping all of this while you setup your page with cover and profile images, about us info, and a few posts to show off what your brand is about.
Be sure to add it to favourites though as this will make it easy to find. Check out the video from Facebook business below for a guide, and if you get stuck, check out this page: www.facebook.com/business/learn/set-up-facebook-page It has a great video tutorial.
Next we need to create likes and followers on our pages.
There are many ways we can create likes for our new Facebook page. If you want to share it with your friends and family, be sure to invite them to like your page. This is a great way to start as then their friends will see that they have liked your page, and they will be prompted to like it too.
Creative content on your page that is both likable and shareable is great. When people start sharing your content, this can then engage more people through Facebook stories. People will see “John liked this photo on this page” in their newsfeed. This is the beginning of viral content, and when it starts getting shared around more and more, your engagement level of your page will go through the roof!
We can also look at Facebook advertising. This is nothing like your usual advertising like print, radio or tv. Facebook advertising targets specific demographics such as location, gender, age and interests. This means you can put your brand right in front of your target audience, although bear in mind, no sales pitches needed here.
What works best in my experience for Facebook ads is likable content that gives your brand a personality or story. Of course competitions and giveaways work great too!
Sharing your own content is also a great way to get attention for your brand. If you don’t want it on your own page profile, consider using links to your content on blog posts, your website, other people’s blogs and on other social networks. Be careful not to spam, as this can create negative affects on your brand. I like to create content on my websites and then share that to Facebook. Firstly if people are liking my articles on Facebook, it creates interaction and conversation. Secondly, it lets your social followers find your website presence which creates new traffic that is already interested in your brand, the perfect audience for creating a sales lead.
Two things to remember about Social Media.
Think about this yourself, when you jump on Facebook or most other social networks, you are normally doing so to connect with friends, family and things you like. This means no in your face sales pitch, no spamming with special offers and advertising material. Get creative with your posts and Facebook ads. Create brand awareness through storytelling, photos of your product, shop or staff, and news updates. Think about the audience you are trying to appeal to, their age and interests and post specific to them.
Secondly, work out when to post. The time of day you post content can greatly affect who even sees your post. This also changes between networks. As a general rule, a lot of social media content is shared after hours as this is when majority of people jump on Facebook and other networks. It’s a bit different for networks like LinkedIn and Twitter which works great during the day.
It is best to work out what your audience likes. Try posting at different times of the day and check the insights tab of your Facebook page. This will show you who is engaging with what post at what time of day. There are also a lot of other useful information in the insights tab so keep an eye on it! Use this information to make your advertising better suited to your target audience.
Does this sound all too much? Me and my team would be happy to help with social network page setup, Facebook advertising or content management. We look after some big brands like Maitland and Port Stephens Toyota as well as offer page setup like Performance Spares.
Be sure to like the Xmedia Digital Solutions Facebook page for more content on building your brand.