Facebook is a powerful marketing tool for any business, but the manner in which it is employed has been changing and diverging between large corporations and small businesses. Recent changes to Facebook's newsfeed function has resulted in less organic reach for posts and content, which has an outsized impact on small businesses. The changes mean that businesses of any size can no longer simply post content and rest assured it will reach existing followers and new potential customers. Since small businesses don't have the ad budgets to spend on Facebook marketing that large corporations do, creative tips are required to close the gap and continue marketing on Facebook.
1. Go Live
There's no more powerful means of connecting with Facebook followers than the Facebook Live function. This is as close to a real face-to-face connection as potential customers and existing followers will get on a daily or weekly basis. There are many ways in which Facebook Live can be implemented to help a small business. Consider using it to show a behind-the-scenes look at the office and people who power the brand or unveil a new product to customers with walkthroughs available live on video.
2. Get on the Map
Facebook integrates Google API for mapping that lets all users mark the places they've visited via the "check-in" function. For those small businesses that are primarily local, the check-in function is even more powerful. List the brand under "Local Business or Place" category on Facebook and encourage followers to check-in when visiting the company or even dealing with the brand. This puts the business on the customer's timeline and spreads brand awareness as a result, attracting a new set of eyeballs as that customer's followers check out where their friend just checked in.
3. Focus on Visual Content
Rather than filling up space on the company Facebook page with text or sending out post after post filled with words, focus on integrating visual content in the Facebook marketing. Visual content is great for the brand because it allows for creativity and variety in posts, and it brings the added benefit of more effectively attracting customers. Did you know the human brain processes visual content 60,000 times faster than it does text? Use graphics, infographics, gifs, comics, and even videos to attract customers. Be creative and have fun with it!
4. Tell Stories
Facebook Stories is a unique means of staying connected to brand followers without pestering them with promotional content that seems annoying. Similar to the Live feature, Stories allows brands to share unique content that bonds with the audience and keeps the company at the "top of the mind" among followers and customers. Further, Facebook Stories is ideal because it is time-sensitive content that is regularly refreshed as brands run limited-time offers, promote upcoming specials, or even share season's greetings with customers.
5. Use Reviews
Finally, customers should be given a sense of control by enabling Facebook page reviews. This allows the brand to measure its performance by hearing directly from the customers driving the brand forward. Positive comments and reviews are free advertising that benefits the brand on Facebook. Negative comments and reviews have a function as well, providing a measuring stick for company success and allowing the brand to work to make it right with customers. Active engagement with user reviews shows a brand that cares about getting it right and working with customers to do so.