Why use Facebook for business marketing?
Some business owners have very little online experience, yet have a broad knowledge of how to market their business. It’s worth remembering that social media marketing is a long-term strategy that won’t happen overnight and it can make or break a business or brand. Social media is not just marketing or public relations – it also involves customer service, sales, operations, senior management, human resources and much more.
The way you communicate your content is just as important as what you are actually saying – if customers see bad grammar and punctuation it can reflect badly on your business. Anyone can leave a review or a comment – it’s about how you respond, and how quickly, that can enable your business to build credibility and trust with your audience.
How to understand the business opportunity
Whether you’re new to Facebook or you have been on it for years, it’s always a good idea to have an online strategy for your business that incorporates Facebook into your marketing (rather than making Facebook your entire marketing strategy).
Marketing your business on Facebook
Marketing is a part of everything you do in your business and there are a number of ways that you can support your marketing strategy with a Facebook presence. From understanding who you are as a business or a brand to knowing what you want to achieve, you’ll be able to understand what works and doesn’t work.
While some companies are considering dropping a separate website and using Facebook as their official online presence, for the majority an official site is still important in terms of search engine optimization (SEO). Remember, what’s more important is that you integrate your social media as much as you can across platforms and websites, then give people the tools to share your blogs and content across different media.
Customer services on Facebook
The way you plan to respond to customers on Facebook – potential as well as actual – should be top of your list when it comes to building trust and relationships. Whether it’s receiving praise or complaints, offering social customer service will go a long way to maintaining loyalty.
How to deal with customer feedback on Facebook:
- Respond quickly: within 24 hours is advisable. Never delete negative comments – you need to embrace the good and the ugly with Facebook, and that means responding appropriately to
- Manage your messages: there are various tools available that will help you manage private messages and posts and keep track of requests.
- Admit your mistakes: be the first to make an announcement if there is news that isn’t positive for the company or you have made a mistake. People are more forgiving than you may think.
- Keep people updated: if there is a problem with your service, for example your website is down or you’ve reached full capacity at your place of business, let people know.
- Reward your customers: don’t forget that there are many ways to reward your fans and followers – whether it’s a promotion, giveaway or discount, give them a reason to come back and to talk about you.
Sales from Facebook
You cannot underestimate the potential impact of a Facebook page on sales, whatever the size of your business. For most businesses and brands on Facebook it’s ultimately about how to increase sales by showing people what products are on offer, letting them know about any new launches, showing them things they may not have considered buying before and encouraging them to share links with potential customers.
People want to see images, descriptions of how things work, find out ways they can get discounts or be one of the first to access something new and exciting. They want to feel that they have ‘tried before they buy’ and in the world of online shopping, getting to
know a product or brand through a social networking site can be the next best thing.
Fans tend to be more ‘emotionally’ attached to a brand if they get to know its values and offerings on Facebook, according to a recent study. They’re also more likely to share positive reviews about the brand with their friends and to recommend it to others.
Some people say that social media is about engagement, and engagement forms a core part of marketing. It helps you both identify your customer’s needs as well as get your products noticed. Ultimately engagement is a key driver in any business marketing and advertising strategy.
HR and recruitment on Facebook
There’s a growing need for anyone who is recruiting to get to grips with the ever-changing world of technology and social media, while embracing its strength as a recruitment platform. Facebook pages are a great way to showcase how your company runs, why people want to work for you and the benefits of being associated with your brand.
From insights into your daily office life to simply being a place that resonates with a potential employer, it’s important that you remember that just as employers will be seeking out the reputation of a potential employee, they in turn will also want to understand the culture of your business and to get a sense for how it operates.
When it comes to the business side of recruitment, approximately 94% of recruiters use, or plan to use social media for getting people on board – and this number has been steadily rising in recent years.
While LinkedIn remains the dominant source for many businesses, Facebook is emerging as a valuable source of information and access to niche audiences. Thanks to the availability
of Facebook analytics, third-party analytics tools and search data (Graph Search included), recruiters have access to detailed information about specific groups of candidates. Facebook ads also allow businesses and agencies to reach and engage with candidates easily.
Additionally, there are a number of software, tools and apps available to help businesses manage job applications through Facebook. One example is Tribehr, where candidates apply for a job automatically from Indeed.com. Using Tribehr’s social network integration, all open positions are automatically posted on your Facebook page, applications accepted and information stored via reports.