Are you struggling to attract passionate fans to your Facebook page?
Marketing your small business on Facebook has become a necessity these days. At least if you want to reach more people and make more money online.
Yet Facebook fans can be rather transient. Many stick around only long enough to get what they want (e.g. a special, a discount, or some information that will benefit them in some way). Others quickly lose interest, and find more exciting places to hang out. So without a regular influx of new fans, your Facebook community can fizzle out fast.
Here are 7 things you can do to quickly grow a fanatical Facebook following that can turn into leads and eventually sales!
1. Help, Don’t Sell
Perhaps the best way to naturally grow your Facebook following is to help your audience.
You’ve heard it said that everything on social media begins with trust. Trust comes when you make an effort to understand people – their interests, challenges, lifestyles, hopes and dreams – and then help them get what they want, whether that means solving their problems or making their lives better.
On Facebook, you can do this by providing helpful, relevant content (text, images, video or audio) to meet those needs.
For example, let’s say you own a bicycle repair business. You can use your Facebook page to give daily bicycle maintenance tips, and answer questions that people may have about their bikes. Such helpful content not only attracts more bicycle enthusiasts to your Facebook page, but also builds trust and loyalty that eventually leads to business.
2. Engage and Be Devoted
Content may be King but engagement is Queen! Learn how to engage people by making your Facebook Page a fun, enthusiastic place where people can learn from you and each other. There are three ways to engage your Facebook fans and attract a highly enthusiastic community.
- Invest time in starting conversations – assuming you’ve done some research about your audience and you understand what kind of things they like to talk about, make it a habit to initiate daily conversations that people will respond to and allow you to really connect with them.
Also, open yourself to your fans by allowing them to post questions or comments directly on your Wall (not all businesses allow this because they fear losing control of the ‘brand message – but remember, trust is a give and take thing). Also when people post questions try to respond promptly so as not to keep your audience (and potential customers) waiting.
- Finally make sure your conversations on Facebook are warm, personal, positive and even passionate. One of the best things you can do for your Facebook page is to invest in a community manager who is well trained, and knows how to serve and interact with Facebook fans.
3. Integrate Facebook with Email and Twitter
Another way to draw eager followers to your Facebook community is to integrate your email and Twitter social accounts with Facebook.
Inside your email newsletter, add social buttons so that people can share your email content with their Facebook friends – by the way, see how Aweber makes it easy!
Remember, people trust word-of-mouth from friends and peers more than they trust advertising messages or even branded content. So if you can get people to talk to their friends about your brand, you can attract more enthusiastic and loyal followers.
You can also grab the link to any post on Facebook and turn into a short link (this happens automatically if you use Hootsuite or Buffer to send out your tweets), then tweet it out and invite your Twitter followers to come back and connect with you on Facebook. And if you’re wondering how to ‘grab the link of a Facebook post,’ all you need to do is click on the timestamp (post date) of the post you want – it generates a unique URL for that specific post. Try it – it’s fun!
Facebook is about passions and interests. People who hang out on Facebook continually express the things they ‘like’. For example books, movies, TV shows, bands, sports (Go Ravens!), hobbies, activities and so on!
When you use Facebook Ads (and you should!) to get more fans, you will need to target these likes. By doing this you capture a fan base that likes things that are related to what you sell. So for example if you own a local beauty salon you can target ads to people who like ‘hair coloring’, ‘makeup’, ‘beauty’, ‘facials’ and ‘manicures.’
Once these people “like” your page, you can get them talking about their interests and passions and they in turn can get each other excited. You show them how your business helps them to achieve their goals and dreams, they love you for it, and tell more people about you, and your Facebook community grows by leaps and bounds.
5. Surprise & Delight
There are so many creative ways to surprise and delight your Facebook fans. Some of the more common methods include, highlighting fans birthdays, inviting their opinions, liking and answering their questions or comments, giving them a special deal every now and then, encouraging them to share their own stories on your Page, and always being super kind to everyone who reaches out to you, even when they don’t agree with something you’ve said or done.
Mari Smith (the queen of Facebook) hosts a virtual networking party on her Facebook Page about once a month, and just invites people to post away! Check out how her delighted fans respond:
This delightful post received over 1000 comments, 85 shares and 508 likes!
6. Run Contests!
Contests are a great way to get people excited about your Facebook Page and boost the growth of your Facebook Page community. And the good news is it’s now easier to run contests on Facebook since the (much hated) rule that says you have to administer your contests through a third-party app was recently eliminated.
But just keep in mind that the only reason you’d still want to use an app is to collect email addresses and further your relationship with potential customers. The key tips for a successful Facebook contests are:
- Keep the entry process simple
- Cross-promote your contest on your blog, on Twitter, G+, email, and your personal profile as well.
- Boost the reach of your contest with a Facebook Ad Sponsored Story.
- Include social sharing buttons to enhance the spread of entries i.e. make sure that your contest allows those who participate to share their entry or vote with their friends.
- Keep the contest duration short – about a week to 10 days is the sweet spot.
Just to show you the effectiveness of contests, a small business called Chocolate for Breakfast ran a contest where they gave away a small box of premium chocolate truffles.
After one week, the company had 700 new fans and 400 email addresses. When they started out, they had about 1200 fans. So for the cost of one premium box of chocolates, the business generated a lot of interest, brought new excited fans to their Page, and grew their email list! Very cool!
7. Connect with Other Facebook Pages
First off, understand that your Facebook Page and your personal Facebook Profile are very separate. When you log in using the email address you use for your personal profile, you can then switch to ‘Use Facebook as Your Page.’
Switch to using Facebook as your Business Page by clicking the Settings wheel on the top right of your Home page
Once you’ve done that you can now go out there and network with other Facebook Pages. The idea is to connect with other Page managers who have a similar target audience to yours, and to cross-promote one another.
So for example if you own a bakery, you should try to connect with Facebook Page managers of the local ice-cream shop, party supply store, pizza parlor or even your neighborhood private party franchise – all these businesses draw the same clientele that you do and so by connecting with them you can share each others posts once in a while, and become visible to their audiences as well!
Inspired? Want to get more free hands-on training like this? Join Internet Income University, follow the steps in the F.A.S.T Income Plan, and start learning how to build a successful online business today!