You might find this hard to believe it but Facebook isn't just about cute kitten photos, arty shots of someone's dinner - or the obligatory 'proud parent's pic of their kid's first day at school post' - anymore. No, Facebook is about much more than that these days. But, it's not just about (fake) news articles, pouting selfies or annoying ads either. Facebook is very much for business too. This is why you need to know how to use Facebook for business - your business.
Of course, it's little surprise that business has got in on the Facebook act in a big way. What started as a novel way for university students to communicate with each other grew to have in excess of 500 million users worldwide in just six years. Two years later the platform had amassed 1 billion monthly users. In June 2017, another milestone was reached - 2 billion monthly users.
With so many users - and so many customers within reach - it was only a matter of time before businesses began to tap into the potential that there is with Facebook for business.
But all businesses should beware. The Facebook landscape has changed and is far more business-friendly and nowadays. It’s all 'algorithms and ads'.
However, businesses should never lose sight of the fact that Facebook is still a social network. The most common reason why a Facebook user will unlike a brand is if a business is sharing uninteresting posts. The second most likely way of getting yourself 'unliked' is if you post too frequently.
In short, if you intend to use Facebook for business to post incessant links to your products/services, you should think again!
Apart from the obvious - the 2 billion monthly users who could, potentially, be converted into your customers - there are several good reasons to use Facebook for business. Yes, 'getting more business' is always going to be the key aim for any business on Facebook. The good news is that getting more business from the platform can mean different things for different brands, and all this is possible if you know how to use Facebook for business.
Facebook can help a business to build a follower base. It can certainly help to increase the visibility and awareness of a brand. As well as this, Facebook is a great way to communicate and engage with customers.
Along with avoiding the all too common pitfalls of over-posting 'salesy' content, any business needs to build their audience before it can really consider thinking about lead generation or conversion.
To build an audience the golden rule of Facebook for business is to create value. The content you share needs to be consistent, and all the content - whether curated or created yourself - needs to add value to your audience.
This is true for any business but is especially important for social recruiting. You want your audience to click, comment and share your content. They might not come to you straight away, but if your content is consistently valuable to your audience, they will come eventually.
Naturally, your business is not going to be aimed at every single one of Facebook's 2 billion monthly users. It is important that you get your content in front of the people who you want to see it the most. This is where the micro-targeting options of Facebook Ads come into their own.
The Ads Create Tool allows you target ads according to location, demographics, interests and behaviour. A business can target ultra-specifically or fairly broadly - the choice is yours.
Once you have got the hang of basic Facebook for business, progressing to more advanced options such as Custom Audiences and Lookalike Audiences allow you to target existing customers and then reach out to similar people. You have the ability to target the people that have already engaged with your content, or similarly, target groups, locations, demographics etc. But be warned. Not fully understanding how to target audiences can result in you wasting alot of marketing spend!
We've written another article about this subject, Advertising on Facebook, take a look when you're ready for the next step
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