If your ideal clients happen to hang out on Facebook, there's never been a better time than now to lasso them in and get them interested in your business. The key is to connect with them and then, boom! You can get them into your sales funnel. Voila!
If only it was that easy, right?
Most small businesses struggle to connect to their ideal customers on Facebook. It's not because they don't have social media know-how, the latest graphics or support from their community.
They struggle to connect because of their behaviors.
I've worked with dozens of small businesses over the last several years and I've realized there are several key behaviors that get in the way. These specific behaviors are preventing small businesses from getting the attention they deserve from their future customers.
Social media was originally created as a place for people to learn, connect and, yes, socialize. When you look at Facebook, it has a culture of it's own and it's very fickle. Users are interested in looking at vacation and family photos, finding interesting articles and getting updates from old friends.
Once businesses realized the potential of social media, they had to pivot their marketing to fit this new channel. Over the last several years, the digital marketing industry has learned quite a few lessons from the pioneering businesses that succeeded first on social media. The businesses that have made it work for them have been very strategic about their online activities and have avoided the following behaviors.
1. Thinking that Generic Content is Good Enough
Most people on social media have seen it all! Just look around and you'll see hundreds of other businesses competing for their attention on the newsfeed over the course of a day.
One a Facebook Business Page is set up, businesses tend to take the easy road and go the generic way. They'll share articles from magazines like Forbes, Inc or an industry website. These don't work very well. Facebook users reject this because they're not learning anything about YOUR business and they start scrolling their newsfeed.
After a while of getting no results, businesses get discouraged. More often than not, they'll say it's because their customers are just not on Facebook. That's not true! With billions of users logging in every day, your customers are on Facebook. Your future customers don't want generic content. They want customized content that showcases you and your business. On Facebook, they want to see WHO they are dealing with. They are interested in LEARNING about your business and why you do what you do. They want to be attracted, engaged and educated.
2. Focusing on Vanity Metrics
If the main thing you think about on Facebook is number of Likes your business Page has, then we need to sit down. Vanity metrics are things like Page Likes, downloads, page views that are easily manipulated and aren't correlated to profit or revenue.
Of course, we all want to be popular and look like we are on the rise and successful in our industry. Yes, once you have your ducks in a row, your Page likes will rise. But it takes time and strategy.
A closer look at a lot of "big" Pages on Facebook reveal that their huge following isn't even getting them the reach and engagement that they should be getting. It's all about pay to play on Facebook so if your huge following isn't engaging, you'll have to pay to get them to see your posts.
Also, if your existing Page "Likers" aren't genuine fans (as in friends and family who want to support you but not interested in ever buying from you), you will end up spending a lot more on your ads in the future. Lesson: Focus on what it takes to get your best prospective customers to notice and follow you! Start by setting yourself apart from the crowd. This includes communicating your unique brand, your business story and putting thought into your content. When these elements come together, your future customers are ready to listen to you.
3. failing to develop real Relationships Online
When we talk about buying in person, we invest in developing a relationship with the prospective customer and build that Know-Like-Trust factor. It's the same thing on Facebook! When you use Facebook to grow your business, you want to move your relationship building activities online.
The first step is always establishing your branding and positioning to attract your "tribe" (the people who relate best to you). Once that's in place, create a content strategy that showcases your brand and your Know-Like-Trust factor. You can use an editorial calendar that includes elements such as weekly FB Live Q/A sessions, testimonials, behind the scenes photos and team events. Once you have a consistent content strategy in place, your online relationships will start to become real. It will be as though you know them in person!