Facebook is the number one place to engage your customers, but so often we forget that engagement is like a conversation – it goes both ways. If you’ve hired someone to manage your social media pages, you don’t have to login everyday to post something original, but I do encourage you to login on a weekly basis to interact with others on your page’s behalf.
Posting great content is the first step in beginning the conversation, so after people like, comment or share your post it’s up to you – are you going to continue the conversation or let things trail off?
Here are some simple tips for using Facebook to network with others, build your audience and expand your brand. I bring you, the “rules of engagement.”
1. When someone comments on one of your photos or posts, comment back
Example: They say “What a cute idea.” You say “We thought so too!”
When your audience knows that you see and appreciate their comments or feedback, it makes them more inclined to like, comment or share again!
2. When someone asks a question – respond in a timely manner
If I manage your Facebook page and notice someone has sent you a message or asked a question I can’t answer on my own – I will send you an email asap. If you notice someone has commented on one of your posts with a question or sent you a direct message, be sure to reply in a timely manner – even if you don’t have all the information, let them know you’ll get back to them. Facebook is a great way to show off your customer service skills and spout your expertise so take advantage of any opportunity to interact with potential customers.
3. Use Facebook as a networking tool
When you login each week, make an effort to see what other small business owners are up to. Facebook is a great place to get ideas, scope out your competition and build relationships. Make it a goal to do the following:
a. Like a new page each week. Maybe that’s a local restaurant you eat at or a store you shop at, a charity or foundation you support, or a business that’s similar to yours.
b. Comment on a photo or a post that speaks to you or relates to your brand.
c. Share something that inspired you. If you’re not sure it’s a good fit for your business page, share it on your personal page. When you share someone else’s content it’s a great boost for their page so choose a business or a cause that you support!
4. Last but not least – invite your friends and customers to like your page!
Your friends and customers are the easiest way to grow your brand and build your audience. Maybe your friends know about your business but they aren’t sure how to find you online – send them an invite! Every time you login to your business page you will see an “invite friends” option. Do this on a regular basis. Don’t feel like you have to go through and select people one by one – invite them all. The more the merrier!
Tell your customers you’re on Facebook and ask them to like your page or write you a review! Simply include a flier or postcard in the packages you ship or tell people face to face when you meet them at craft shows or events. If you answer the phones for your business, remind potential customers to like your Facebook page before ending your call. You’ll be surprised how positively people respond!