Keep Your Facebook Fans Coming Back
We have come up with specific ways to increase your fan base, as well as examples of small businesses that got it right. However, remember that you are the true expert on your business and know your customers better than anyone. Most likely, you will find that the best ideas for increasing your fan base are your own.
Step 1 - Know yourself and know your goalsWhat kind of business do you have? Is it the type of business that thousands of fans will be attracted to? Are your customers the type of people that frequent Facebook? Why should people “like” you on Facebook? Think these things through so that you can set realistic goals and know what to expect from your Facebook strategy. In the end, the total number of Facebook fans that you have shouldn't be your biggest concern. What matters is that you are reaching out with relevant information and interacting with people who care about what you have to say.
Step 2 - Develop the social media mindsetThis is your chance to get creative. If you are authentic with your fans then you will reap the rewards. Creating content is most of the game, but do not forget about interacting with your followers. Did something exciting happen at the office today, like an employee’s birthday, or the arrival of a new piece of equipment? Announce it to your fans. Would a question that you answered for a customer in your office be a question that applies to other customers as well? Share it in a status update. Did you read something relevant to your customers in your industry’s news? Make sure they know about it. Did you add a new product to your website? Post a photo and ask your fans if they “like” what they see. What is the common thread your customers share? Ask them a question that encourages them to post their stories. Be sure to respond back when your fans leave comments or ask questions - the interaction is half the fun and can help build relationships.
Step 3 - Get more Facebook fans
1. Invite people who you interact with (in real life) to "like" your page.
It's easier to get people that you have an actual connection with (in real life - not the cyber world) to "like" your page and interact with it on their own accord. For starters, invite your personal friends on Facebook to "like" your page. In the upper right hand corner of your business page, click "Build Audience". From there, you can invite your email contacts or invite friends, allowing you to quickly expand your reach.
- Your website/blog: Make a call-to-action banner to "like" your Facebook page. Display the Facebook Box. Use Facebook sharing buttons and "like" buttons throughout your website. Contact HEROweb at (541) 746-6418 for help implementing these features.
- Your newsletter: You may want to send out a special announcement just to announce your Facebook page. Then include Facebook buttons in all future newsletters.
- You email signature: In all of your correspondences via email your Facebook link will be visible.
- Your business card: Use the backside of your business card to mentions of your social media accounts (LinkedIn, Twitter, etc.).
- A sign at your brick-and-mortar store: Put up a sign in your physical store location with your Facebook address. You could include a QR code with a link to your Facebook page. Tell your in-store customers about your Facebook page. You could even set up an in-store display with a tablet, allowing customers to "like" your page on the spot for some small reward. Read example #3 of this article from Mashable to learn about a business that pulled this off.
- In post-purchase thank you emails: Include something along the lines of, “If you were happy with your purchase, please “like” our page on Facebook to receive updates on new products and deals.”
- On your packing slip: Like your business card, make a quick mention of your Facebook page (and website, and other social media) on the packing slip that customers receive with their shipped product.
Step 3- Cultivate your community
This is one of the most important steps. What does it matter if you have 20 fans or one million fans if no one looks at your page? You must update your page regularly (no more than twice a day, but at least a few times a week). It is essential that you respond to any posts your fans make. The point of Facebook is to keep the conversation going - continued interactive with your fans is very important!. Through your status updates and posts you should be giving your fans something of value, such as tips, inspiration, important news, and a little humor. If you can accomplish this then your page will become it’s own community that people won’t hesitate to join.
Check out these other pages that have created successful and interesting Facebook communities:
Best Bully Sticks: With their featured dog of the day, photo contests and other fun activities, they have created a valuable and entertaining page for dog lovers.
Erin Williams Watercolors: At the moment Erin Williams may have a modest 350 fans, but these fans interact with her regularly. Filled with beautiful snapshots of her artwork and heartfelt blog posts, this page keeps her fans talking.
Eugene Running Company: Eugene Running Company creates hype about their products and store and also posts running news that attracts avid runners. This page taps in to the Eugene running community.
Nancy’s Yogurt: Even something like yogurt can foster a Facebook community. Instead of letting their page go stale, Nancy’s Yogurt posts recipes, questions, and promotes photo sharing of their fans’ creative uses for Nancy’s.
For more tips on using Facebook to promote your business, please “like” HEROweb Marketing and Design on Facebook.
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