Most of you have been using a personal profile on Facebook for years at this point. And it’s possible that some of you have even had your business page for years too. Unfortunately, that sort of familiarity doesn’t always equate to real knowledge about how to use the platform in the best way possible to grow your business. Let’s make sure you have everything you need to make a difference with your Facebook page.
The biggest reason you need a Facebook Strategy is that Facebook is everchanging and having an iterative plan is important. Facebook and its algorithm change regularly, but in 2018, as the result of nefarious entities using fake organizations and content to manipulate users on the platform. Facebook made even bigger changes to its news feed, greatly reducing the organic reach of many businesses. To prevent this type of activity from happening in the future, Facebook will constantly be tweaking the ways its user base receives and shares content.
Savvy businesses need to be able to pivot every time they make a change. There are a few things that you need to plan for as you begin to develop your overarching strategy. So often businesses doing wrong when it comes to social media is that they’re not focused on how social media affects business objectives.
So we need a strategy in place. And it starts with business objectives. Likes, shares, comments, these kinds of vanity metrics may make you feel warm and fuzzy inside. But at the end of the day, it’s really about business objectives, how is social media getting there? So start with your business objectives. Then identify your target market. You should know this, but you need to figure out where your target market lives on social.
And then you determine those channels so that everything is tying back to those business objectives. If you’re just going towards social media objectives, like increasing likes or followers, you’re probably not going to see any effect on your bottom line. So start there, business objectives, whether that’s conversions, whether that is sales, whatever it is, this is not like shares, followers, but real business objectives.
As we just heard, first, you need to consider your business goals. For example, if you have specific revenue goals to hit on sales for a B2C product, you’ll likely want to share content that’s targeted at driving users back to a site to buy. But if you’re a B2B organization that has a long lead time to purchase, your focus might be on education and delivering multiple touchpoints to help engage users. With business goals in hand, you can now determine how you want to use Facebook. Here are some of the most common ways that businesses use the platform.
- Brand awareness
- Customer retention,
- Referrals to website
- Community building,
- Customer service
- Business leads
Some companies might use Facebook to do all of these things, but that’s not true for everyone. A better tack to take would be to map those business goals to the types of content you’ll need to meet those goals. Perhaps you find that Facebook is just a customer service channel. Or maybe you want to build a robust community of devoted fans.
Basically, what I’m saying is that one size does not fit all. You’ll need to define your audience. It’s important to understand the types of people you want to attract and engage with on your Facebook page. Another key planning component is understanding what types of actions make the most sense at each of the inbound methodology stages.
First, the attack stage. The content that educates, informs or entertains. Facts, tips, and how-to’s do well for companies who are feeling your company out or looking for a specific solution to their problem. And entertaining them a little along the way to give them a sense of your company’s culture, voice, and tone can help build affinity.
For brands that don’t have a sexy product, how can they achieve content that feels accessible, think about the emotional qualities behind what you’re selling?
For example, if we’re talking about light bulbs. It might not seem sexy, but there’s a lot of humor to light bulbs. Why do we always wait till there’s only one left when we go out to CVS to buy one? There’re emotional stories and connections behind every product, it’s just whether or not you choose to look for it.
Second, the engage stage. Content that helps people solve their problems. Key types of campaigns and content to consider are videos, live interviews, classes and seminars, access to product trials, and most importantly, calls to action.
Third, the delight stage. Content that helps connect or entertain. This is the stage where you’re building loyalty and driving retention. In this stage, consider giving your followers the ability to ask questions and have them answered.
Help them to network with others within your organization, with your partners, or other like-minded customers and prospects. Keeping them excited and laughing is perfect for delighting those that love your company and products.
Understanding these stages will help you determine the right approach for the followers you have and that you’re trying to attract. There are two more things to think about in the planning stage of your Facebook strategy.
First, determine how your Facebook strategy ties into other marketing efforts.
Are there cross-platform and multi-channel possibilities for your content and campaigns?
Can you incorporate Facebook into your events? Can you use it to share blog posts or drive traffic to landing pages?
Make sure that you weave your Facebook strategy into your bigger marketing planning.
And if you have someone on your team who is only responsible for Facebook, make sure you keep them alerted about upcoming campaigns so that everyone is aligned.
And finally, you’ll want to measure for success. Facebook delivers some mighty robust statistics that you can use to do a variety of things, including understanding the demographics of your audience, determining the best mix of content and the best times for that content, audience engagement, such as clicks, likes, and shares and how many followers you’ve gained or lost that month.
If you’re advertising with Facebook, there’s another set of analytics that you can tap into as well. Having all of these analytics is one thing, but you should determine early on what you want to measure, which KPIs do you plan to track? See the resources section for a link to a lesson all about planning how to build KPIs.
To quickly summarize, consider the following when putting your Facebook strategy together.
- Business goals.
- How you plan to use Facebook.
- Defining your buyer persona.
- Determining the right actions for the stages of your buyer’s flywheel.
How your Facebook efforts tie into your larger marketing strategies. Which KPIs you want to track for success? Mapping these components out ahead of time will help you when you’re ready to start creating content, developing your engagement strategies, and planning for advertising.
If you have any suggestions or any strategy which you think can be more effective then let us know in the comment section.