How to Use Facebook to Brand and Build Your Business
With a staggering 1.5 billion active monthly users, Facebook provides a perfect setting for getting the word out about your business, connecting with customers, and promoting your products or services. Here are some practical guidelines that can help you brand and build your company through an engaging business page on Facebook.
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1. Select your profile picture and cover image wisely
Your cover image and profile photo are very valuable assets as they create a first brand impression for every visitor to your business page. Naturally, you want to dedicate some time to choosing images that will represent your business in the best possible way.
Your profile photo is a great place to highlight your company logo. It will appear next to each of your updates as a representation of your brand and help people to recognize your business page among pages with a similar name in Facebook search results.
Your cover photo is also one of the most noticeable parts of your Facebook page so make sure you follow best practices like choosing a unique and vivid image whose colors, tones, and designs support the mission and promise of your brand. Make sure your cover conveys a simple, memorable message that will inspire your audience.
2. Be available and provide great customer service
After you create a Facebook page, make sure to keep it active. Visitors will try to interact with your company and, regardless of whether they have something positive or negative to say, you should make sure you “Like” every comment and promptly respond to it. While responding, remember to tag people, so that they know you’ve replied to them.
Friendly and courteous responses send out a message that your firm cares about serving people, even though you’re not making immediate sales. They also encourage and promote further interaction and give you a chance to build lasting relationships with customers and prospects alike. However, if your audience feels you’re not paying attention to your business page, they won’t hesitate to turn to your competitors and seek answers to their questions there.
3. Add value to the community and refrain from being too promotional
Don’t make the all too frequent mistake of overtly pitching your business on Facebook. Instead, focus on your audience and on posting content they will find interesting and valuable. At the same time, think carefully how each of these posts will contribute to building your brand and increasing interactions.
You can maintain content balance by following the 70/20/10 model. Seventy percent of your content should be information that is valuable to your followers, such as interesting articles, news items, historical facts, resources, market updates, etc. By sharing these types of information you will not only be adding value to your followers’ lives but also solidifying your brand’s image as a trusted information source.
What about the remaining thirty percent? Twenty percent can be content shared from other sources, while only ten percent is reserved for self-serving, promotional content.
4. Use a lot of visual content
According to a study conducted by Quintly, picture and video posts rank as the most-viewed content on Facebook. Unsurprisingly, Facebook promotes them more than it does textual posts. They also seem to trigger the largest number interactions and can be used as great tool for promoting audience engagement. This should be reason enough to make visual content a central part of your Facebook strategy.
Make sure that the imagery you post is consistent and follows the same style that is defined by your logo and brand guidelines. You can even use it to make your company appear more human and relatable. All you need to do is snap a few photos of your team members at a fun team meeting and then post them to your Facebook page.
Don’t forget to leverage the power of video content, too. With so many free video tools, such as Vine and Instagram, it has become easy to create inspiring and fun videos for posting to Facebook.
5. Engage your audience
You can encourage interaction on your Facebook page without waiting for someone to leave a comment. Contests are one relatively easy way to do that. Simply ask your followers to submit photos of themselves using your products or services and give them a chance to either win a prize or a place of honor on your page in exchange.
Another idea is to use Facebook to crowdsource new products or product features. Polling your audience on their preferences will allow you to learn what it is that they really want and to adjust your products to match their needs. Moreover, if you’re releasing a new product or starting a new service, you can get the word out to your audience in advance via your Facebook page and construct a community of supporters that will share all your ups and downs.
Creating and maintaining a business page on Facebook does take some time and dedication, but it can reward you with positive results in terms of branding, marketing and growing your business.
Hopefully, the guidelines outlined in this article have given you a good idea what to focus on when building your Facebook presence. If you’ve already integrated Facebook into your social media strategy, feel free to share your tips and experiences in the comment section below.