Facebook- How To Build a Following and Keep Them Engaged

Facebook is the largest and most active social network, with over one billion active users sending more 3.2 billion likes and comments per day. Businesses have utilized the benefits of Facebook, recognising that it’s easy-to-use interface and extensive potential for user engagement makes it a fundamental tool in the marketing efforts of businesses. Perhaps the greatest feature of Facebook is the ability for your followers to share your content with their following at the click of a button and is what cements Facebook as a successful word-of-mouth platform that can help your message reach an entirely new audience of prospective customers.

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(Photo by digitallabblog.com)

Promoting your Facebook page in order to get maximum exposure and to attention can be a difficult task without the right strategy, content, time, or know-how. There are however several key tips and techniques you can employ to help get your content noticed- and when it is noticed-  to get those same people coming back for more.

  • Use your fans to get more fans

Create posts that encourage your fans to share it with their friends. A common method is to announce that you’ll offer a discount or some other benefit to everyone who shares your offer, but only if you get a certain total number of shares or likes. Offer your customers a reward if they mention your business — a discount, free trial, or extra service, whatever is relevant for your business. It is key that you also familiarise yourself with the Facebook terms and conditions when running contests and promotions, this will help you avoid breaking rules that could leave to your page being deleted.

  • Promote your Facebook Page

Anywhere your customers interact with your brand is an opportunity to encourage them to follow you on Facebook. Once you begin posting, remember to promote it across all your other social media platforms and that includes mentioning it on your e-newsletter, your email signature, business card, product packaging and anywhere else your customers will see it.  This also applies if you’re an active participant in a forum or membership site, placing a signature with your fan page link will direct more attention to your page.

  • Use Tagging and Acknowledgments

Tagging an author or a popular Facebook page in your post is a great networking tool that can drive new connections. You should however have a good reason to do this, for example if the page or author has posted something that will be useful and valuable to your fans. Be authentic and selfless in how you do it and you may be rewarded with increased attention to your page.

  • Reward Your Loyal Supporters

Encourage your loyal customers to join your Facebook page as supporters, and reward them with special deals for consistent support. This equally applies to those already fans of your page that continually show their support. A recommendation or shout-out from a happy customer is a lot more attractive than a marketing slogan, so reward your fans and they will likely share with their friends how great you are.

Whether you already have a large collection of followers or you are slowly gaining momentum, the key to keeping those followers is to keep them engaged on your page with the content you post. Below you will find proven examples of what content gets the best engagement, but before you post you must always remember these 4 key things;

  • Never go for the direct sell

When you first start posting it may be tempting to go with the direct sale approach posting information about how wonderful your business is and all of the things you sell or offer. This however is not a successful approach and in most cases will see you viewed as a spammer and will quickly lead to people avoiding your page and not becoming fans. To avoid making this mistake you must strike a balance between subtle business tweets and ones centred on customer engagement, with a favourable emphasis on the latter.

  • Try to include some form of media within your posts

A common mistake made with posting is not including some form of media content such as a relevant video or picture that can lead posts to look uninviting and not capture a reader’s attention.  To avoid making this mistake make sure to post insightful and valuable content that your readers will want to read and looks visually appealing also.  Posts with some form of media such as a photo or link always get more clicks so it is vital that you try to include some form of relevant media.

  • Say Something Interesting and Useful

Write your posts with your target audience in mind so rather than trying to appeal to a generic wider audience, write content that contains specialised information and analysis that those interested in your services or in your sector would read. For ideas simply think about questions you had when starting out in your industry or flag up interesting case studies or advice. By openly giving out advice and information you will become an online repository of specialist knowledge and this will attract the attention of your target audience.

  • Be Creative

People always respond better to something that is new, fresh and clever so always brainstorm ideas in the mind-set of producing something that is creative and breaks the mould of other generic posts. You are competing in the fast-paced and growing industry of social media marketing so you need to make yourself stand out and give potential customers a compelling reason to choose you over your competitors.

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(Photo by Mashable.com)

Engagement on Facebook is reflected in three forms: likes, shares, and comments.  Here are several ways to create the right type of customer engagement with your posts;

  • Photos

A picture is one of the simplest ways to catch someone’s attention, as it is more visually appealing than the average post. For ideas you can provide links to photographs of your employees, offices, celebrations, etc. Similarly, posting a photo and asking fans to come up with a caption is a common and successful way of encouraging fan interaction and engagement. When it comes to brands, a familiar image is also key and can be as simple as including your company logo or a face that’s tied to your brand.

  • Fill in the Blanks

Fill-in-the-blank posts are great at encouraging engagement. The blanks are essentially platforms for people to share their creativity and often gather fun and short comments, which then encourage your audience to interact.

  • Questions

You will get a lot more out of Facebook if you enable and encourage your customers to respond to what you write. Beyond asking questions with your posts, you also need to remember the conversation is two-way, so respond to the comments readers leave and you are likely to develop a community on your page that can help turn your customers into fans who will promote your products and services and provide you with quality feedback.

  • Tips

Successful posts often deliver something valuable to the reader, whether that is entertainment or information. A tip is engaging because it gives value to your audience and therefore makes them more likely to interact.

  • Quotes

Quotes are one of the easiest and most popular ways to get likes and shares on Facebook. They tend to get more interaction compared to comments because quotes are often inspirational, making it personal in nature and thus showing a more human side to your brand that people are drawn to and appreciate.

  • Posts that offer a Promotion or Discount

By giving discounts or other benefits to your Facebook fans, you give them a reason to follow you and you get a captive audience for other business messaging. Common promotions offer a free gift or service upon receiving a certain number of likes. Facebook however has stringent rules when running a contest, so always consult these rules before you run a contest.

 

For more tips and advice you can (of course!) go and like my Facebook page-  https://www.facebook.com/ScarlettDarbyshireSocialMediaManager

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