How we contributed up to 20% in sales growth for our independent business clients via Social Media
(The below is the first of an six-part series to share with Independent Business Owners exactly how we grow our client’s sales via social media)
Are you wondering why your Facebook page isn’t growing? It’s probably because you’re going about it all wrong! Quit wasting your time hoping for your fan base to grow and get to work creating a Facebook page that draws in fans and keeps them engaged.
The Real Reason You Need More Facebook Fans
The most obvious reason for focusing on your Facebook page is that there is an opportunity to build stronger relationships with your customers/clients/guests. After all, if you are an independent business owner, you understand that this is how you have built your own sales over the years.
But the primary reason you want your Facebook fan base to grow is so that you can create more awareness for your brand and deepen relationships with current and future customers/clients/guests. You may have a ton of Facebook followers but if nobody is looking at your page (i.e., seeing your posts on their newsfeed) it’s worthless! (We will share with you in a future article two keys to the Facebook alogorithm – we think you will be surprised!)
We are often asked how much we can grow the fan base of a Facebook page. Getting more fans is easy, but it shouldn’t be your primary focus. Focusing on the fan base metrics is akin to someone selling you advertising in the Yellow Pages. They may lay claim that that the Yellow pages will reach thousands of households in your area (equivalent to Facebook reach). However, you and I both know that nobody opens a page the phone book to see if you are in there. You might as well take that Yellow Pages and use it as a doorstop.
3 Steps to Grow Your Fans Organically
Just like you have four walls of your independent business, you can strengthen the relationships with your current and future customers, clients, and guests.
#1 Create Content
Creating content on your Facebook page just means being real. Show your business in the best light possible but be genuine. What do you share with a potential customer – your product, your service, your reputation? Whatever you do off-line, you do on-line.
Showcase your product with images and videos that show off what you do best. Create offers and discounts that drive new customers to want to try you out. Go behind-the-scenes and demonstrate how you create your quality product or service.
Posting photos of other fans enjoying or receiving your product creates interest. Not every post has to be perfectly polished and ad-worthy. Bring up topics of interest within your demographic – parenting, community events, or industry updates.
Perhaps most importantly, be relevant to your brand. Don’t undermine your fan base with trivial or purposeless posts. You content needs to reflect your company’s goals.
Now that you’ve posted content that is relevant and relatable, you’re going to want to keep those fans engaged. We refer to this as interaction, and it is probably the most vital of all the steps to growing your fan base.
Interacting with guests’ comments is a way for you to reach out and virtually shake a hand. Whether your fan is a lifelong customer or a potential new customer you want to make sure they know that you’ve heard them. This puts your brand in a humanizing light and makes you relatable.
Fortunately, Facebook is an excellent platform to influence potential leads. We’ll go over more details about how to captivate your fan’s attention via interaction in a future blog post.
It’s imperative that you schedule Facebook posts regularly on your page. Create a calendar that lays out your content and decide to implement it. Consistent posting from your Facebook page keeps you prevalent in the eyes of Facebook algorithms.
Interaction needs to take place on a regular basis as well. Leaving messages, comments, and reviews unanswered not only makes your page fall off the newsfeeds, but it looks bad to your fans. If you’re MIA, you’re missing out on customers.
We continue to see results from this 3-step method. One of our clients, Big Jake’s in Texarkana, Arkansas grew their Facebook fans from just over 4,000 to more than 8,000 organically in about a year (see below). This was a result of following the three steps above.
However, the real story is in the engagement (“likes,” “comments” and “shares”) as that is the key metric that you should focus upon. This is equivalent to “word of mouth” for your independent business. (see below).
You will see that Competitor A was only able to reach 23 of their more than 7,500 fans. Big Jake’s interaction is blowing the competition out of the water with “word of mouth” via Facebook. This combination of page likes and interaction means that not only are we continuing to reach new potential customers for this popular BBQ joint, we are consistently relaying their brand message effectively to an engaged audience.
Remember the Three Rules above and look for our next post: Discover the Facebook Secret to Increased Sales and Brand Loyalty