There is no denying it. Facebook is the most popular social media platform. It probably won’t always be this way, but as of right now (and the better half of the last decade) Facebook provides the largest audience and platform to market your goods or services. If you own a small business and your not marketing on Facebook, you are potentially leaving a lot of opportunities on the table.
As famously put by Mark Zuckerberg, “there is a good chance that most of your users are already on Facebook, and for the ones that aren’t, they probably will be soon.”
Many organizations run studies that prove Zuckerberg’s statement. The majority of internet users are using Facebook.
Facebook isn’t for teenagers and college students anymore, it’s becoming more and more common for parents, and yes, even grandparents, to have active social media accounts. Social media has hit Generation X, and hit it hard. According to a GlobalWebIndex study:
Between Q2 2012 and Q1 2013 Twitter’s fastest growing age demographic was 55 to 64 year olds, registering an increase in active users of 79%. Both Facebook’s and Google+’s fastest growing age demographic was 45 to 54 year olds, growing by 46% and 56% respectively.
So how is it that we can harness this amazing potential? Getting more Likes on your Facebook page is a good start. Here are a handful of tips to get more Likes.
Get Your Friends and Family to Share Your Page
This is obvious but often overlooked. This is what is known as “low hanging fruit.” It’s not uncommon to get a hundred or more likes by just inviting your friends, family, co-workers, and email contacts to like your page. Most of the time, if you have a good relationship with the individual, they’ll be more than happy to support your new venture.
Also, consider the ripple effect. Some of your friends and family will inevitably share your page, and you will get likes from their extended circles. This initial wave of likes can continue on for a few days, and you could reach several thousand impressions – all with very little work on your part.
Humanize Your Social Media Efforts
One reason a lot of businesses fail on social media is because they forget the cardinal rule about being social – no one likes interacting with someone who is too self-centered. If you meet someone for the first time, and they immediately jump into a sales pitch and give you the “my #$%! don’t stink” speach, you will probably get the impression that they are kind of a jerk. No one likes talking to someone who only talks about themselves, instead we enjoy speaking with people who have new and interesting stories to tell.
Social Media is the same. If you only promote your own products or services, then you are probably turning off your audience.
OK – so you aren’t over-promoting your own products or materials. Is that enough? Probably not. Real people have real emotions, and so should your accounts on social media.
Take a page out of Moz’s book, and look at their core values – TAGFEE.
- T – Transparent
- A – Authentic
- G – Generous
- F – Fun
- E – Empathetic
- E – Exceptional
I won’t go into detail about each value – they’re fairly straight forward, but it’s an incredibly humanizing way to conduct your business, and if Moz is any proof, it works.
Share Interesting and Worthwhile Content From Your Niche
So if you can’t only share your own content, what are you supposed to share? Isn’t it obvious? Share content that is interesting and worthwhile to those in your niche! This promotes social sharing and increases engagement.
Infographics are great for social media, and are inherently viral. Run a study on something new and interesting in your industry, then hire a graphic designer to put it into a visually appealing image. You’ll get the best results by making an inforgraphic for something that hasn’t been done before. There are differing opinions out there about infographics, but the fact of the matter is that they work.
If you are having trouble finding content to share, follow some influential individuals in your niche, and find out what type of content they are sharing. Because this content is coming from a champion of your industry, it’s worthwhile. Try to stay ahead of the influencer and share content before they get their hands on it. Sometimes being the first to share something means you’ll get the most reach.
Share at the Correct Times
There are several studies out there about what are the best times to share on various social media platforms, but it’s hard to argue with Bitly’s study.
According to Bitly:
Links posted from 1pm to 4pm result in the highest average click throughs. The peak time of the week was on Wednesday at 3pm. Links posted after 8pm and before 8am will have more difficulty achieving high amounts of attention. As with Twitter, avoid posting on the weekends.
Hold a Contest
Another great way to increase likes and engagement on a Facebook Page is to hold a contest. Give away a gift card, or free products or services. Everyone likes free stuff!
If you do decide to hold a contest, make sure you stay within Facebook’s promotions guidelines. You cannot require an individual to like or share a page or post as part of the entrance into your contest. Instead, make the content something worth sharing, so that individuals will promote it for you, and organically “like” your page and posts.
Run an Empire Avenue Campaign
Empire Avenue is a great place to make a social media push because it’s a community full of people who want the same thing. I’ve talked about Empire Avenue before, and it’s benefits, but in short – you’re able to run missions asking others to complete a task – in this case that task is to like your Facebook Page.
I have also found that users of Empire Avenue are generous and extremely active on social media. If you ask them to complete a simple task (like a Like) and offer a fair price, you’ll probably get more out of it than you were expecting.
Run an Ad Campaign
Unfortunately, the easiest and fastest way to get Likes on your Facebook page is to run a Facebook Ad campaign. It’s also the only method on this post that isn’t free.
Fortunately, it is possible to come across free advertising credits. For example, I received a $50 Facebook Ad credit when I purchased a Bluehost shared hosting plan. Other hosting companies and services offer similar deals. $50 may not sound like much, but you actually get quite a bang for your buck.
Take a campaign I’m currently running – my $50 credit will get me over 1000 likes on a Facebook page. The add itself (which targeted page likes) generated 674 likes for less than $40 so far. When you calculate it out, that’s about $0.05 per like. That’s right, 5 cents per like.
That’s great, right? When you consider the ripple effect of social media, however, the deal gets even sweeter. While the add generated 674 likes, the page itself has 815 likes. That’s an additional 141 likes that I neither marketed for or paid for.
I imagine that these individuals found the page by seeing their friends who liked it. The wider your reach is, the easier it is to get more likes.
Starting a Facebook page from scratch can be difficult. You will probably start slow, but as long as you have something that people genuinely like, and give them a reason to interact with, you will find success.