4 Simple Steps to Start Your Small Business’ Facebook Presence

via Flickr by Coletivo Mambembe

So what if 800 million people actively use Facebook? That’s not reason enough for your small business to have a presence there. You may be a local storefront or provide business services to a smaller community; you are definitely not a huge consumer brand with big budgets and lots of employees to manage your marketing efforts. What’s in it for you? Here are four steps to start leveraging Facebook today:

1. Take advantage of a FREE business page.

It’s fairly simple to create a Page to start your Facebook community, especially if you’ve already established your brand positioning. At its most basic, you’ll have a photo of yourself of your logo, the business category you’re in and other info such as About, Address, Description, Mission, and how to contact you. You can also take more steps to make it an inviting place to be.

2. Spend a small ad budget to drive highly-qualified customers to your business page.

See what a $50 ad budget can do for your Page. What 800 million Facebook users really means is that you can drill down into the demographics and interests your ideal customer has and still have it reach a meaningful number of people. You have a small ad space to add some text and an image, so use it wisely with a compelling proposition! To drive people to Like your Page, the call-to-action should point there. The best place for them to land is on your Welcome tab, so they aren’t faced with jumping into conversations on your Wall.

3. Plan and execute a content calendar to engage your Facebook community.

You don’t have to be tied to a computer watching Facebook all day. You have your business to run, after all! But if you now have people in your Facebook community, you’ll want to keep them there with some interesting content that’s related to your business. Take an hour or two and set up a monthly content calendar. You can decide how often to engage with your community, but don’t overdo it. Start with one post per weekday and see how that works for you.

Your content can consist of things like:

  • Monthly specials or promotions
  • Third party articles
  • Inspiring quotes
  • How-to videos
  • Photos from an event you attended
  • Events you run or are sponsoring
  • Articles or blogs you’ve written

Perhaps you can quickly post your content right before you start your workday. You can also use a scheduling tool such as HootSuite if you know you have a busy week ahead. If your Facebook community is asking you questions and posting things to your Wall, make sure you take the time to respond if it provides value to your users. The point is, people don’t want to interact with an all-automated, scheduled Page. Be there every now and then to make it personal!

4. Use Facebook Insights to track how your community interacts with your content.

Facebook recently revamped their tracking tools to gauge how effective your posts are. They are leading the industry with new terminology for social media reporting! So, not only are you looking at increasing the size of your community and tracking the number of people who’ve Liked your Page, but you can use Facebook Insights to see how many people your posts reached, how many people interacted with them and how viral they were. After you’ve posted your first month of content, use this data to help you plan out your next month’s content.

Have you launched your Facebook presence recently, or are you already a pro? Leave a comment to let us know what’s worked for you!

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