Archive | Facebook Business Marketing RSS feed for this section

The 4 Daily Habits of Effective Facebook Business Page Managers {or What the Wise Owls are Doing}

Facebook Business

There’s a stream of new “things to do” in Social Media bombarding you every day right? It’s impossible to keep up and you’re feel a tad overwhelmed? I don’t blame you! There’s a lot that you can do, alot that’s not worth doing, and only a small handful of tasks that are actually worthwhile doing. Here’s 4 of the daily habits I strongly recommend to all the clients that Mentor, Workshop and Club with me.

The 4 Habits of Effective Facebook Business Page Managers {or What the Wise Owls are Doing}…

1. Check your Page daily. You don’t have to post every day (I actually don’t recommend posting every day, but that’s another blog post). Posting 2-3 times a week is ideal (but this varies per industry. My book explains this in detail and helps you tailor a posting frequency that suits your business.) Don’t abandon your Page for weeks and weeks and weeks and then wonder why no-one interacts with you when you decide to make a re-appearance (if this has happened to you, you may need to read this….) Bottom line is, you have to turn up for your Fans so be prepared to check your Page at least once a day.

I recommend you check your Facebook Page whenever you are doing all your other admin tasks (eg checking emails, placing orders, faxing, making calls) so that checking your Social Media soon becomes a daily habit.

2. Reply to any comments or direct messages. When a Fan leaves a comment on your Page or takes the time to send you a private message, it is important to reply to them personally and individually. Replying within 24 hours is vital. If you can respond faster than this, you are a rockstar (online). Leave it longer than this and your Fans will lose interest in what they messaged you about.

Remember that when someone leaves you a comment, they are sussing you out. They may be a potential customer. So treat each comment from a Fan as a potential buyer in your shop. Facebook is potentially like an online store, so attend to your “online” customers just as you would attend to your customers in real life.

3. Post interesting content. About 2-3 times a week, post content that is interesting to your Fans and content that is also relevant to your business. It is important not to post randomly (I blogged about the issue of “Relevant vs Random” earlier here….)

  • Ask a question
  • Post an interesting photo
  • Share a link to an article that will be relevant to your Fans
  • Post a video or photo album
  • Keep your Fans up to date with the highlights of what’s happening in your industry

Take the time to find material that will be enjoyed by the Fans following your Page and you will reap the rewards when your Fans interact with you, and perhaps even buy from you.

4. Find new Fans. There’s a multitude of ways to grow your Fanbase. This is such a vital part of your Social Media strategy that half of my book is dedicated to this topic ! But one of the major ways to find new Followers is to “Like” other Pages that are relevant to your industry. You may even want to leave a comment on their Page as well. By being active on other pages that are synergistic with your business, that company may Like you back and *Voila* {queue: sound of cymbals clashing}, your Page is revealed to all their Followers too.

Take some time to make a list of the companies that are your industry leaders and also companies that support you. By tapping into their Fanbase, you are effectively attracting Followers that are already highly targeted to your business.

There are other habits of highly effective Social Media Managers, but these are the four basic habits that are worth cultivating every day. Take some time to ensure these tasks are included in your daily routine and you will lay a solid foundation of sound Social Media Management that other strategies can be built on top of.

Managing your Social Media effectively, and for the long term, is about pacing yourself. I recommend becoming familiar with a few tasks like the ones above, before adding a few more. There is no point having a mad burst of doing “everything”, avalanching into Social Media overwhelm, then abandoning your Page.

To discover more of what to do and what not to do on your Facebook for Business Page, my book contains a 10-step method to help get your FanPage rocking, to purchase the book click here….If 1-on-1 is more your style, I can help you progress further with a personal session, to enquire about a coaching session click here

Buy “Novice2Ninja – Facebook for Business” , eBook or Printed, here Request a Call-Back to chat about a 1-on-1 Session with Francesca Grab your seat to the upcoming Facebook Business Workshop here Join us at “The Social Media Club” here

And I would be as happy as a wise owl in a barn if you shared this post with your friends in your favourite online playground. Thank you xx

With Gratitude
Francesca Esposito-Rose B.Inf.Tech.
Business Mentor, Online Strategist, Author, Speaker & Social Media Business Specialist

{Photo Courtesy of freedigitalphotos.net}

Top 3 Tips to Super-Charge Engagement on your Facebook Business Page {or Getting Back on the Horse after Holidays}

Business Facebook Fan Page

If you have not posted much over the holidays, chances are highly likely that the “number of people talking about” your Page has dropped significantly in your absence. So if you have had a few weeks of “light duties” since Christmas and have not maintained your Facebook Page very much, you may be feeling a bit like this little guy above , a bit bamboozled by the loss of Engagement on your Page. {I am guilty as charged Your Honour!}

There is nothing wrong with taking some time out to spend with family and friends (and this is entirely healthy) but once you’re back on deck, it doesn’t take long to see that the Engagement on your Facebook Business Page has dropped to a very low level. If this has happened to you too, then read on, I will share some Engagement-rescue-tips with you below….

A successful Facebook Page needs to be managed regularly, but taking time out to unplug from gadgets and technology is just as important.

But don’t panic, we can get your Engagement levels back up again in a jiffy. And the reason you want as high an Engagement rate as possible, is so that your Page can be more easily found (which will in turn help your Page grow faster and spread through Social Media.)

You can measure “Engagement” on your Page by dividing the “number of people talking about this” by the “number of Likers” x 100. This will give you the percentage “Engagement” on your Page.

So if your percentage Engagement has dropped significantly (as mine has too), I have outlined some easy steps below to help fix this post-holiday-too-slack-to-post-problem….

And thank you to all the folks that inboxed me this week asking me how to remedy this issue, it’s a timely reminder that a successful Page is a Page that is maintained. IGNORE your Page and Facebook will never work for your business….

So if you’re just getting back on the horse this week, here’s my Top 3 Tips to help boost the engagement on your page and get your Page rocking again….

Getting Back on the Horse – Top 3 Tips to Super-Charge the Engagement on your Facebook Business Page after being too slack to post over the holidays….

1. Schedule Some Posts. Take a bit of time this week to pre-schedule a handful of posts for the coming few weeks. Believe me, with a workshop only a week away and lots of mentoring sessions booked in, the “schedule” button is a god-send to me right now! This takes the pressure off you as you get back on deck with everything else you also have to do in your business. At the same time, having some pre-organised posts will help to ensure that your Facebook Business Page does not drop any further in its level of Engagement, and we don’t want that! The steps for how to schedule a post are listed here and the reason why you don’t want to lose too much more engagement is because of EdgeRank, which I also explain here.

The “average” Engagement level across Facebook across all industry types is 2%, so if you are sporting an Engagement level that is higher than this, give yourself a pat on the back right now. But ideally, you want to aim for “super-engagement” which I explain here, but don’t worry about being “super-engaged” this week, you’ve got the rest of this year to be super-awesome. {No pressure. LOL}

2. Post Juicy Content. And by JUICY I mean content that YOU KNOW will be highly engaged. From my extensive research for my book “Novice2Ninja – Facebook for Business” I discovered that some posts clearly did better than others. For example, videos are more highly clicked than most other types of content, hands down. Photo Albums are also highly interacted. So take some time when you are scheduling posts this week to really cherry-pick some great content that you know will be more highly engaged than just a plain message without a visual.

Even just posting “Visual” content alone will help to boost your Engagement very quickly because it will naturally attract more shares, likes and comments.

And if you want the full lowdown on what is the best content to post, when to post it, and who to post it to, half my book is dedicated to this topic, it is that important!

Buy “Novice2Ninja – Facebook for Business” , eBook or Printed, here

3. Plan a mad rush to your Page. One of the the quickest and most effective ways to boost your Engagement is to organise a way for your Fans to stampede towards your Page. I am not joking! Through the use of the “checkin” feature or via  “Fan uploads”, you can arrange for a rush towards your Page. I know this is a little “manufactured” but this is a powerful way to instantly boost the engagement on your Page. So pick an event you have coming up soon, ANY EVENT, and set up a competition where Fans win a prize when they “check-in” to your Page. For example, if you run a bar and have Happy Hour this Monday night, why not empty out that cupboard-full of promotional material you’ve been hoarding from the liquor companies the last 2 years and offer your patrons a cap or t-shirt in exchange for a “checkin” to your Page? If you run a play centre or restaurant, offer a freebie in exchange for a “checkin”. However if your business is not face-to-face or not group oriented, then run a promotion where the best review or comment, or best photo or video that is uploaded to your Page, wins a prize.

There are many ways to effectively use the “checkin” feature and getting a customer to upload a photo, video, comment or review to your Facebook Business Page is just as powerful as a “checkin”. Either of these functions will trigger the Engagement on your Fan Page to shoot up almost instantly soon afterwards.

Basically because the quick rush to interact with your Page makes it look very popular as it suddenly becomes more highly engaged.

Using “checkin” or “Fan uploads” is like a double-word-score = you not only get super-charged Engagement, but this in turn feeds the Facebook EdgeRank machine, giving you more EdgeRank points than a standard post, spreading your Page even further than before. This gives your Page the “snowball” or “viral” effect which is a phenomena that I explain in detail in my book.

For more advice on how to build a positive brand online, the next Facebook MasterClass starts soon in Bangalow. This is a 3-day Intensive and Interactive Workshop with myself stepping you through the 10-step process to build a successful Facebook Page. The Workshop is run at the beautiful SummerHills Retreat Byron Bay. For more info or to book your seat, click here…. If 1-on-1 is more your style, I can help you progress further with a personal session and to enquire about a coaching session click here. Or if you prefer to discover at your own pace, my book contains a 10-step method to help you get rocking on your Facebook Business Page, to purchase the book click here….

Buy “Novice2Ninja – Facebook for Business” , eBook or Printed, here Request a Call-Back to chat about a 1-on-1 Session with Francesca Grab your seat to the upcoming Facebook Business Workshop here Join us at “The Social Media Club” here

And I would be as happy as a bird on a wire if you shared this post with your friends in your favourite online playground. Thank you xx

With Gratitude
Francesca Esposito-Rose B.Inf.Tech.
Business Mentor, Online Strategist, Author, Speaker & Social Media Business Specialist

6 Mistakes to Avoid on your Facebook Business Page this year {and my Top 6 Tips to remedy them}

In the 1-on-1 Mentoring I do and Facebook for Business Workshops I run, I am asked all the time by small business owners to outline which are the major pitfalls to watch out for when managing their Facebook Business Pages. So I thought I’d list them…. Here’s the Top 6 Mistakes to avoid this year on your Facebook for Business Page (and my Top 6 Tips to Remedy them)….

Facebook Business

1. Breaking the Rules. It’s one thing to live life close to the edge, but breaking Facebook policies on your Business Page may result in having your Business Page shut down. For example, a client came to me recently with triplicate versions of the same Business Page. Running multiple Pages for the same business is one of the things that could get you shut down. Another fault that could get your Business Page tripped up is running a Business from your Personal Profile. A big no-no. So go forth and live on the wild side, but not on Facebook.

Top Rule #1: Play it Safe. Stick within the rules….

2. Posting Randomly. No-one likes willy-nilly. Everyone loves the comfort of a regular, repeatable routine to make them feel safe. It’s human nature. And if one of your goals is to build trust with your Fans (it should be), then you want to be dependable. So turn up for your Fans. Daily. At least for 10 minutes a day. Talk with them. Post information that your Fans will be interested in and information that is relevant to your business.

Top Rule #2: Post Regularly. Stay on-topic…

3. Not Responding to Fans. Again, no-one likes to be ignored. Check your Business Page at least daily, and respond to all comments that are waiting for you, at least within 24 hours. These Fans are reaching out to you and could turn into customers if you engage with them and respond to their questions in a timely manner. Don’t begrudge having to answer questions, a Fan on Facebook is like someone browsing in your store, they could end up buying from you. Consider a comment left on your Page as a potential sales enquiry. If you are not Engaging your Fans, if you are not talking with them, then you are missing a big chunk of Facebook Mojo. Social Media is all about interacting with your Fans, engaging them in meaningful dialogue about your business, and keeping them interested so that they may buy from you, when they are ready. Engaging your Fans is a big part of building a community of like-minded people on your Page. If you miss this bit, you are missing half the reason to be on Facebook.

Top Rule #3: Engage Your Fans Daily. Build a Community….

4. Posting one-sided statements. This flows on from my previous point. If you are posting statements rather than asking questions, you are “broadcasting”. And most people will tire of the same-sounding trumpet after a little while. So make sure you post surveys/polls, post questions and find out what your Fans are really thinking. Using Facebook as R&D is not only powerful, but also a very cheap feedback tool that every business can utilise when researching new products or ways to improve their services!

Top Rule #4: Don’t Broadcast. Engage in a Two-Sided Conversation instead….

5. Being non-visual. Statistically, Fans will comment, like and share more posts that have photos or videos attached to them, compared to plain status messages that have no visuals. So make it your aim this year to never-ever-ever post something without some kind of visual. Your Page will love you for it as it will spread further throughout Facebook (and your Fanbase will therefore grow faster). Your Fans will love you more as well as you have given them eye-candy to enjoy.

Top Rule #5: Be Visual. Always. No Exceptions.

6. Not Sharing the Love. There is enough negativity in the Press and in all other forms of media. Endeavour to BE POSITIVE on your Facebook Business Page. If your Page is the voice of doom-and-gloom, folks will soon switch off. And it’s not just about the tone of your Page, it’s also about what you do with your Page. Share posts from other Business Pages. Leave comments on other Fan Pages. “Like” other Business Pages too if they are “simpatico” with your business (translated from Italian, “simpatico” = sympathetic/synergistic). Spending a few minutes a day perusing your News Feed to share some love on Facebook will not only spread your own Page further on Social Media, but you will also get some of the love boomeranged right back at you, which is a good thing.

Top Rule #6:  Make your Page an UpBeat place & always Take the Time to Share the Love. It’s Worth it.

For more advice on how to build a positive brand online, the next Facebook MasterClass starts soon in Bangalow. This is a 3-day Intensive and Interactive Workshop with myself at the beautiful SummerHills Retreat Byron Bay. For more info and to book your seat, click here….

Buy “Novice2Ninja – Facebook for Business” , eBook or Printed, here Request a Call-Back to chat about a 1-on-1 Session with Francesca Grab your seat to the upcoming Facebook Business Workshop here Join us at “The Social Media Club” here

And I would be as happy as a jumping jumbuck if you shared this post with your friends in your favourite online playground. Thank you xx

With Gratitude
Francesca Esposito-Rose B.Inf.Tech.
Business Mentor, Online Strategist, Author, Speaker & Social Media Business Specialist

{Heart Cloud Photo courtesy of freedigitalphotos.net}

 

 

Storm in an F-Cup {Koche vs. Breastfeeding Mums and the Power of Facebook}

Facebook for business

It’s a sad day when breastfeeding mothers have to “protest” with a boob-in to make public breastfeeding acceptable. (If you missed the controversy between lactating mums and Australia’s famous “Sunrise” Show this morning, click here….)

Me, I’m a pro-public-mammary supporter, but it doesn’t matter which side of the fence you sit on, the Storm in an F-Cup this morning proved five things….

  1. Koche, the respected hero of the Sunrise show and esteemed business-man, didn’t see the protest coming. Why? Because all the chatter and brewing discontent happened online over the weekend. And the producers of “Sunrise” were none-the-wiser.here’s a snippet of the growing disgruntledness that no-one saw coming….
  2. Social Media can’t be ignored. Despite the “Sunrise” show turning down the blinds (quite literally) and not broadcasting the protest that was brewing outside their studio window, the protest continued on Twitter and Facebook. And after 2 hours of “ignoring” the nurse-in, the producers of the show decided to “tackle” the issue. This is the power of Social Media – Tweet after Tweet, the snowballing protest, eventually, could not be ignored.
  3. Communities are formed online. These breastfeeding mothers are all part of an online community. Some of them blog. Some of them Tweet. Some of them Facebook. And they have one thing in common. They are all connected. To eachother. To events. And to a wider community of like-minded people. YOUR BUSINESS NEEDS TO BUILD A COMMUNITY and leverage the power of the Internet.
  4. Your brand can be made or broken online. The “Sunrise” show was in serious damage control this morning. They swiftly pulled out every positive story they could think of and every happy-go-lucky angle to show their support of women and breastfeeding. I think the show did redeem themselves slightly by tackling the issue (eventually) even though they tackled the issue quite poorly (in my opinion) by pre-ambling “the debate” with a lampooning boob-centric weather report-skit. Quite poor taste but at least they addressed the issue. They had no choice really, if they continued to ignore the issue, the show would have been murdered, and the presenter, crucified. Online at least. I can only imagine the effect on TV ratings this would have if they refused to address the issue!
  5. It is vital that you understand your demographic. Why-oh-why would the Sunrise show, who’s major target market is MUMS-AT-HOME, drop a “feedback question” about “discreet public breastfeeding”? Surely the producers did not think this one through.
And after all the fuss, there is now a call-to-action for laws surrounding public breastfeeding to be reviewed. THIS IS THE POWER OF THE INTERNET. That you can organise a rally on an issue and get national coverage and perhaps affect real change. Maybe your business doesn’t hit such core-social-issues like this, but every business can learn from this Storm-in-an-F-Cup. I believe that every business needs to be mindful of some Basic Business Etiquette that the Sunrise Show clearly still needs to learn….

 

Here are My Top 5 Tips for Business Etiquette….

  1. Build a brand that is POSITIVE, both offline and online. Keep your brand upbeat, authentic, accessible and fresh. ALWAYS. There is no need to delve into the negative issues (there’s enough negativity in the world). Use Social Media to BUILD your Profile, not to draw negative attention to your company. These days, Social Media should be part of your front-line marketing strategy, so use Social Media to spread the word about what you do, how awesome your business is and to raise visibility about your company’s products and services.
  2. Use the power of online “community” to build up a following of Fans (and customers) that love your brand and will rave about your business. This is a powerful way to build a strong customer base that will buy repeatedly from you.
  3. Address all issues, especially negative ones. You can run but you can’t hide, so it’s best to remedy the issue on the spot, admit you’ve made a mistake and offer solutions. You can even turn a negative situation into a positive one, if handled correctly. Everyone’s human, so just be real and most folks are fairly forgiving, they often just want an apology, to be heard, or a replacement product that works and meets their basic expectations.
  4. And the obvious one, never, ever, ever “dis” a minority group (or any group for that matter). Not mums, not the vision impaired, not those with special needs, not those of ethnic decent, not white, yellow, pink or indifferent. Never put anyone’s nose out of joint, or that stuff that hits the fan will boomerang right back at you.
  5. Understand Your Demographic. A passing flippant comment can be very damaging to your brand. Make sure you truly understand what your customers want and need, and ensure your business fulfills these needs and solves a real problem.
If you want to discover how to build a positive brand online, Facebook is the number one Social Media platform, and can help you BUILD A COMMUNITY for your business. If you want to leverage the power of the Internet, the next Facebook MasterClass starts soon in Bangalow. This is a 3-day Intensive and Interactive Workshop with myself at the beautiful SummerHills Retreat Byron Bay. For more info and to book your seat, click here….

 

Buy “Novice2Ninja – Facebook for Business” , eBook or Printed, here Request a Call-Back to chat about a 1-on-1 Session with Francesca Grab your seat to the upcoming Facebook Business Workshop here Join us at “The Social Media Club” here

And I would be as happy as a babe suckling at a breast if you shared this post with your friends in your favourite online playground. Thank you xx

With Gratitude
Francesca Esposito-Rose B.Inf.Tech.
Business Mentor, Online Strategist, Author, Speaker & Social Media Business Specialist

 

Why “Buying Fans” & “Liker Ladders” Could Damage Your Facebook Business Page {and Tips to Build your FanBase without them}


business Facebook liker ladders

Earlier this week, some of my Clients and Fans were offered massive amounts of “Liker Ladders” from a company that is doing regular shout-outs on Facebook. For 2-3 shout-outs per day, for a period of 3 months, the cost being offered is a once-off payment of $20. Sounds like a bargain right? Unfortunately not. One of my clients texted me early Monday morning and by the time I wrote back to her by midday advising against entering into this $20 deal (high-finance, I know), she had already done the deal. Some of my other Fans that also signed up said “it was a limited time deal, only available for the next 5-minutes, I couldn’t resist the allure of gaining more Fans without working for it!” Others inboxed me saying “I saw an opportunity to grow my Fan base real quick, and went for it, but have I done the right thing?” These reactions are fair enough. Who doesn’t want loads of new Fans on their Page, yesterday? But guess who is the only company benefiting from these schemes? Not yours.

There are two activities raging through Facebook at the moment which I would like to draw your attention to, if you are not aware of them already. The first is “Liker Ladders”. And the second is “Buying Facebook Fans”. Both are as soul-less and futile as the other. I will explain why both are not going to help build your brand on Facebook, and how both can be potentially detrimental to your brand, in a cataclysmic way.

Firstly, “Liker Ladders”….

This is where, for a limited time only (eg “for the next half an hour“) someone hosts a “Liker Ladder” on their Facebook Business Page. The sum total of this activity involves one company declaring a “Like event” on their page and everyone rushing to their Page to Like all the pages that leave a comment on their Page. It is basically on “online Like party”. At the surface it sounds as though this sort of reciprocal love would be nourishing for your Facebook Business Page, right? Wrong. The problem with this is that only a tiny amount (if any) of the Fans that will like your Page during one of these “blitz” events, will ever be in your demographic. Therefore only a minuscule number of these Fans (or none) will generate any engagement on your Page. So how many of these Fans do you think will buy from you in the future? Zip. So don’t expect big love from any of these Fans that you have picked up during a “Liker Ladder” event. I explained to my clients that…..

“Liker Ladders” is like “rent a crowd” for your party, there is never going to be any love in the room with this sort of event

So why is everyone doing it? Short answer. To shortcut the work involved in building their Fanbase. Long answer. Sorry peeps, there is no shortcut. If there was, I’d be doing it. A “Liker Ladder” will definitely increase the number of Fans on your Page, but it will decrease the love (Engagement) on your page too. You don’t want to lose your Engagement level as this affects your ranking in the News Feed (see my post about EdgeRank to learn more about this). More importantly, the only company a “Liker Ladder” event is helping, is the host company itself. THEY get loads of engagement by everyone hitting their Page all at once, Facebook thinks “Phoaw, this Page is popular!” and gives them more EdgeRank points.  So you ARE helping somebody get better Engagement, but that “somebody” is not your FanPage.

The Social Media strategy I advise my clients is primarily based on Engagement (love) not prowess (bigger/better). The size of your FanBase is secondary if you are not engaging your Fans….

If all you want to do is grow the number of Fans on your Page, then you are missing half the picture. Yes growing your FanBase is important, but Engagement is the other half of the story that can’t be ignored and it is the more important half. Ignore Engagement and your Facebook for Business Page is doomed to fail.

The ONLY time I would say that a “Liker Ladder” blitz event is worth your $20, is, if, AND ONLY IF, the “Liker Ladder” team was in a very targeted market that was very aligned with your business. And this is a big if. Therefore if you are synergistic with the Liker Ladder “host” company, then go for it, and see how it works for you…..  If however the audience of the “Liker Ladder” host party is very general or the FanBase has nothing to do with your market, then your $20 is better spent on two tubs of good quality ice cream to share at your next dinner party where your real friends do turn up to.

So in a nutshell, “Liker Ladders” are short sighted at best, and in the long run, the Fans you’ve won via any dial-a-rent-a-crowd-scheme, will become a noose around your neck –> you will never be able to hit any high Engagement notes with these empty fans that won’t love you back (because they won’t engage with you). Your Page will eventually drop in ranking (EdgeRank) and your Page will grow at a slower and slower pace in the future until it grinds to a halt. Sad story, but so true. I’ve seen many folks use “Liker Ladders” to give them instant speed & satisfaction, and then come to me for help to “fix” their Pages once the damage is done. It is repairable, but we’re basically back-to-the-drawing board, building their FanBase from scratch. So why waste this precious time in the first place?

I advise a slow burn is a better strategy in the long run. In my view, the turtle wins the (Social Media) race, every time. So if you’re tempted to enter a “Liker ladder”, if you find them irresistible, then you need to ask yourself “which race am I running? Speed to reach a certain number of Fans by a certain deadline or Quality of your FanBase? PLUS remember that the rented crowd will never buy from you. AND they will “Unlike” your Facebook Page at some point in the future because they were never really interested your business in the first place.

The second of the “empty joys” is “Buying Facebook Fans”….

Oy vey, I get “deals” like this offered to me every day! The going rate is about $500 per few thousand Fans. My emphatic advice, don’t be tempted. Here’s why….

Issue#1.  Illegal on Facebook Business Pages. It’s against Facebook Terms & Conditions to “buy” Fans. “Buying Fans” is Facebook Black Market on steroids. And Facebook actively shuts down 20,000 accounts a day that it’s suss about, for whatever reason. So imagine all your hard work to date, thrown out the window. Pfffft. Gone forever. And there’s no Facebook Court, there’s no getting your Page back. Once a Facebook Business Page goes to the Sin-Bin, it rarely comes back.

Issue #2. Loss of Engagement. There’s the “No Love” problem (no engagement) for all the reasons above.

Issue #3. Integrity. When I see really big fan counts or Fan Counts that jump up really quickly, I’m already suss about it. Any big Fan Count can be faked by buying Fans. If someone has a really big Fan count, I am already questioning the Integrity of the business. Guilty before proven innocent, Your Honour. And it is only because I know for a fact that this sort of “Buying Fans” racket is so rampant that I jump to this conclusion. So to separate the Good Pages (the Pages I want to trust) from the Bad Pages (the Pages I don’t want to follow), I always look at the “number of people talking about this”…. if the Fan count is huge but the engagement is low, I know there’s a good chance the business bought their fans….. That doesn’t impress me, so I don’t follow them – I can’t trust a business  that needs to “fake” their FanBase! (Because it’s hard not to jump to the next conclusion, what else are they faking? A natural conclusion, right?)

But if a Page has a huge Fan count AND a big “talking about this”, then I’m uber impressed. That’s why “super engagement” is so great to see on a Business Page, you have to be really rocking to be “super engaged” and it’s reasonably rare. (You can read more about super engagement here). Anyone that has a “super-engaged” Page is a Rockstar, in my opinion, at least Online….

My TOP TIPS to grow your FanBase on your Facebook Business Page

There are lots of actions you can take to increase your FanBase on Facebook. Keeping in mind that your Fan count will increase naturally over time with everything you do. The primary strategy is to be active.  If you choose to increase your Fan count with any of the “rent-a-crowd” schemes (which is what “Liker Ladders” and “Buy Fans” are essentially), this defeats the purpose of having {love + soul} on your Page. I understand most folks feel the pressure to get a gazillion more Fans in a hurry, but it will happen. It took me 3 years to organically build a 2,000 strong FanBase on the SummerHills Retreat Byron Bay Page (my other business). I am not saying that it will take you this long (I had no-one to help or teach me, that’s why I share my successful strategy, to help other small business owners also achieve success with their online marketing)…. Therefore I’m a big believer in a “soulful marketing” strategy that will ensure you build a FanBase that is….

  1. within the Facebook Business Page guidelines
  2. attracting love on your Page
  3. converting Fans to Sales
  4. building a Page that also builds Integrity and Trust for your business

Here’s my Top Tips on how to increase your FanBase organically, without the aide of Buying Fans or Liker Ladder schemes…..

1.       Keep active on FaceBook. Keep a consistent (daily) approach with your Social Media

2.       “Like” other businesses that are synergistic with your business

3.       Shout-out regularly with “mentions” and “tags” on your own Business Page. Share the love and you will get the love back

4.       “Share” posts from other businesses whose Fans are in your target market (this will reveal your business to their FanBase)

5.       Identify who are your peers, advocates, industry leaders, and….

6.       …..Leave posts on their business pages (this will put you in front of the fan base that is the right demographic for your business)….

7.      There are loads more steps you can take, which are all outlined in detail in the second half of my book “Novice2Ninja – Facebook for Business”.

8.      Rather than posting randomly, establish a clear  “Facebook for Business” strategy, which is half about Engagement and half about building your FanBase. Both halves of this strategy are shared in full in my book, including case studies and worksheets. (And if you are currently posting “randomly” with no strategy, read here why you need to remedy this STAT).

The main thing to remember is that once you establish a clear Social Media Strategy, be consistent with your Social Media. KEEP IT UP. Over time, you will develop a “Unique Voice” on your Page which will pay off in the future, when your dozens of Fans turn into hundreds, and your hundreds turn into thousands. And once you’re staring at multiple thousands of Fans, you will be wondering what all the fuss was about, a few thousand Fans ago.

My final thought to leave you with today is….

Liker-Ladder and Buy-Fans “schemes” are like “white-bread” = Full of empty calories. You are better off reaching for the multi-grain and establishing a solid Social Media strategy that will nourish your Page. Don’t be soul-less on your Page, be prepared to “turn up” for your customers by engaging with them online. If you connect with your Fans both online + offline PLUS deliver a great product to your customers once you do win their business, you have a winning formula.

Are you ready to build a clear and solid strategy for your business on Facebook? If so, sign up for my upcoming Facebook For Business Workshop where we build your Facebook for Business strategy from scratch. Or come along to the next Social Media Club where we brainstorm different authentic & soulful online marketing strategies every month. All this helps to support and grow your brand online in a positive way. Are you ready to kick-off your business year for 2013 ? If you need some direction, I’m here to support you, my 1-on-1 mentoring sessions could also help.

Buy “Novice2Ninja – Facebook for Business” , eBook or Printed, here Request a Call-Back to chat about a 1-on-1 Session with Francesca Grab your seat to the upcoming Facebook Business Workshop here Join us at “The Social Media Club” here

And I would be as happy as a frog in the rain if you shared this post with your friends in your favourite online playground. Thank you xx

With Gratitude
Francesca Esposito-Rose B.Inf.Tech.
Business Mentor, Online Strategist, Author, Speaker & Social Media Business Specialist

{Heart Tree photo courtesy of FreeDigitalPhotos.net}

Maps with Benefits

Business Facebook

Adding your “street address” to your Facebook Business Page has more benefits than you think. And the benefits are worth it. Alot of folks running home-based businesses don’t want their “real address” publicly revealed, but the benefits of entering your street address far outweighs the very minimal risk that you may inherit a Facebook-stalker.

I blogged about the main benefits of adding your street address last year in this blog post here, so if you’re keen to discover the primary reasons why you need to enter your street address, I recommend reading this earlier blog post first.

But today I want to highlight another really important reason why you need to enter your street address on your Facebook Business Page. And that is, the “Recommendations Box”. Here’s what the Recommendations Box looks like below…..

Business Facebook

The Recommendations Box gives “Social Proof” like no other feature on Facebook. Anyone can “like” your page and “share” your posts on Facebook, this in itself is an endorsement of what you do, a “bravo, keep doing what you’re doing, pat on the back” kinda thing.

But the Recommendations Box allows an individual to really recommend you. I mean, “Recommendations” is like an actual review. Actually, it is a review. And if you think therefore that collecting as many Recommendations as possible on Facebook would give your Business Page lots of Kudos, Mojo, Ju-Ju, Street-Cred aka Social Proof, then you thought right. The “Recommendations Box” is like Facebook Juice on Steroids because it also gives you loads of EdgeRank points….

So can any Facebook Business Page sport the ever-powerful “Recommendations Box”? Yes. And there are two very simple steps to grabbing one of these babies for your Fan Page….

Step 1. Enter a real physical address. Without one, you won’t have access to the Recommendations feature. I know you may hesitate and be reluctant about this, but at least a PO Box, something that will register an address on Facebook for your business. (Be warned, it must be a real address. Enter a bogus address of the paddock down the road or the power station next door, and Bing will know. Bing knows these things. I say Bing because Facebook uses Bing to manage their maps, not Google. Also it must be a unique address, you can’t use an address that someone else has used before for their business.)

To enter your street address simply go to Edit Page/Update Info and enter your street address there. It may take several minutes, hours or days to display your map on your Business Page, but the map will appear on your Business Page once Facebook and Bing do the little dance they do together to update their databases.

Step 2. Once you enter your street address and your map is showing (you may need to come back at a later time to check this if the map doesn’t display straight away), you will see that a cheeky little box suddenly appears right under the map itself, called “Show this map on the page”. You must tick this box. Leave this box un-ticked and your Recommendations Box will never show. And that’s all it takes to be missing the Recommendations feature, an un-ticked Map box! Here it is below, ticked.

How to Facebook Business

A few other things worth noting….

  1. You can’t leave a “Recommendation” as a business entity. You can only leave a Recommendation as an individual. You must therefore “switch” to your Personal Profile to leave a Recommendation for another business. So because of this…..
  2. You will never see a “Recommendations Box” displaying when you are in your Business Account. You will only see it when you are operating from your Personal Profile
  3. There is no rule to say you can’t leave a Recommendation for your own Facebook Business Page from your own Personal Profile, so recommend yourself away. Unless you think it’s a bit naff to do this, then don’t (totally personal choice).

Lots of clients have asked me about the “Recommendations Box” lately, and having a street address (and a map) is key. I highly recommend you get both so that you can enjoy your “Maps with Benefits” !

I share my extensive research on the topic of  “Facebook for Business” in my book “Novice2Ninja – Facebook for Business”. Hope it can help you too.

Buy “Novice2Ninja – Facebook for Business” , eBook or Printed, here Request a Call-Back to chat about a 1-on-1 Session with Francesca Grab your seat to the upcoming Facebook Business Workshop here Join us at “The Social Media Club” here

And I would be as happy as a butterfly in an open paddock of daisies if you shared this post with your friends in your favourite online playground. Thank you xx

With Gratitude
Francesca Esposito-Rose B.Inf.Tech.
Business Mentor, Online Specialist, Author, Speaker & Social Media Business Specialist

{Heart Cloud photo courtesy of FreeDigitalPhotos.net}

Busting The Myth about “Add Interest List” – the {not-so} “Quick Fix”

marketing Facebook businessRiding on the back of this Facebook Business hotbed of controversy, are those that are trying to implement a “quick fix”. I don’t blame you, I’d love one too. But as with all “quick fixes”, they are either “not so quick” or “do not fix”. And this solution is both (not quick and not fixing)….

Yes I’m talking about the “Promoted Post” drama which has been going on for weeks now (I blogged about this last night too here….)

Every Business Page I see today seems to be advising their Fans to click the “Add to Interest Lists” button to ensure that their Business Page remains in the NewsFeed of their Fans.

There are two problems with this “quick fix”….

  1. You can only “Add to Interest List” from your Personal Profile. So if you’ve been clicking on the “down arrow” underneath a business’ cover photo and wondering why you can’t see it, this is why, it’s because you are viewing the other Business Page from inside your own Business Page. You need to hop over to your Personal Profile and “Add to Interest List” the other business Page from your Personal Profile…
  2. Adding a business to an Interest List does not add the business to the regular News Feed where most Fans spend most of their time surfing. It only adds the Business Page to the News Feed of the “Interest List”, which is a different News Stream altogether. This is great in theory, but is really only useful if the Fan is in the habit of using their Interest Lists. When was the last time you hopped out of your regular News Feed to surf the feed inside your “Interest List”? Yup, you get where I’m going with this…. a bit impractial….

“Adding to Interest List” is one of those “quick fixes” that is great in theory, but is not going to work very well in reality.

I doubt many folks will finish surfing their regular Facebook News Feed and say “okay great, now I’m going to surf a whole new  News Feed in my Interest Lists because I haven’t had enough News Feed Surfing tonight”. Nope, I think they’re most likely going to say “I’m done”, skip over the News that is sitting in the Interest List and step away from their computer…

So this is not a fix at all really.

Some folks are claiming that “Adding to Interest Lists” is restoring the visiblity of that Business Page to their News Feed. But which news feed? Their Personal Profile news feed? Their Business Page news feed? Or their Interest List news feed? I am testing this at the moment too, so I will get to you with my results, but it sounds sketchy to me.

What is the only solid solution? I advise all Business Owners to focus on the 3 primary key factors to online success on Facebook, and they are ENGAGEMENT, CONTENT + FANBASE.

I share my extensive research on these 3 topics in detail in my book “Novice2Ninja – Facebook for Business”. Hope it can help you too.

Buy “Novice2Ninja – Facebook for Business” , eBook or Printed, here

Request a Call-Back to chat about a 1-on-1 Session with Francesca

Grab your seat to the upcoming Facebook Business Workshop here

Join us at “The Social Media Club” here

And I would be totally stoked if you shared this post with your friends in your favourite online playground. Thank you xx

With Gratitude
Francesca Esposito-Rose B.Inf.Tech.
Business Mentor, Online Specialist, Author, Speaker & FaceBook Business Specialist

{Photos Courtesy of FreeDigitalPhotos.net}

The Mighty Hullabaloo (over the Changing Facebook Algorithms and the new Pay-to-Promote)

Facebook businessI don’t normally take a stand on issues that are flying around, I tend to park  in neutral, but I’m going to voice my opinion on this current controversy, which I’m sure will kick up some dust.

What I’m talking about here is the DRAMA over the changing Facebook Algorithms the last few weeks and the furore over the new “Pay-to-Promote” feature that Facebook has recently introduced. There’s lots of folks complaining about having to pay for posts and how Facebook “is supposed to be free”. Let’s get this into perspective because I think the controversy has been a little unbalanced and one-sided lately…..

The facts….

  1. Facebook Business Pages have been around since 2007. That’s a full five years that businesses have had the remarkable opportunity to promote their businesses online  FOR FREE
  2. Facebook Advertising has only been around the last few years. THIS IS OPTIONAL. No-one is holding a gun to your head to advertise on Facebook. You can still operate your Facebook for Business Page FOR FREE, no-one is forcing you to advertise.
  3. The Facebook “Pay to Promote” feature has been around for a couple of months now. Again, THIS IS OPTIONAL. You can take it or leave it.
  4. The statistics I’ve seen flying around this week is that only between 10-25% of your Fans are seeing your Business Posts. Guess what, the “average” number of Fans that saw your business posts before the promotion feature started, was only 17% anyway. THIS IS NOT NEW. It’s called EDGERANK and it has been around since the start of Facebook Business Pages. It is vital that you understand how EdgeRank works and how it affects your Page, and how/when your Fans see your Posts. I have a blog post about this here if you want to read more (I highly recommended that you understand EdgeRank if you want to get some results from your Facebook Business Page!)….
  5. There are 1 Billion people sitting on Facebook every month, and 3 Billion posts a day. I have been asking my clients this week, “Do you want a piece of this?” and “Hell Yeah!” has been the resounding cry! Facebook is the 3rd largest population in the world, why wouldn’t you want a piece of this action for your business!

My approach to all things Social Media….

  1. My approach is to UNDERSTAND the rules and work within them
  2. Rather than get upset about Facebook moving the furniture around, I simply work out WHAT’S NEW, WHAT’S CHANGED, WHAT’S GONE and work out a plan for how I am going to use the new or changed features from there
  3. For MISSING features, I simply work out WHAT I NEED TO CHANGE IN MY OWN BUSINESS PLAN to compensate for the missing features
  4. I say, be grateful as a business that you do have acces to a  FREE PLATFORM like Facebook to advertise your business with, online
  5. BE AWARE of the Paid features that are AVAILABLE to you, and make choices in your business about when to pay for a service. Base this choice on your specific needs and remember there is nobody forcing you to pay for advertising or promoted posts. Make a plan for what you will pay for, and what you won’t and stick to it.
  6. BE DISCERNING. Don’t pay for a promoted post just to spread your latest blog post. Use the PAID features wisely. Set a clear budget for promoted posts and stick to it. For example, if you have an event coming up, why not use a PROMOTED POST to ensure that you get a wider spread of Fans that will see (and come to) your event? Makes sense to me! A “promoted” post on Facebook is typically $5 or $10. This is a damn sight cheaper than a newspaper advertisement to promote your event?!?!!?

marketing Facebook business

My advice to all Small Businesses using Facebook….

The advice to my clients this week will be the same as the advice to my clients last week, and that is, that nothing has changed from a Strategy point of view. It just means that you have to ensure that you are taking these steps below…..

  1. Be clear about your CONTENT. Make sure it’s relevant and specific to your Fans
  2. Work on your ENGAGEMENT. This will elevate the position of your posts further to the top of the News Feed of your Fans so that they actually see your business and click on your posts more often. This will help to “spread” your business throughout the community of Facebook. There are loads of ways that you can improve your Engagement
  3. Have a strategy to build up your FANBASE. If your Following is steadily increasing, then the number of people that will see, share, like and comment on your posts, will snowball and will help you gather more Fans and attract a larger Following to your Page (this is the viral nature of Social Media).

My book Novice2Ninja – Facebook for Business is dedicated to these 3 x topics above of CONTENT, ENGAGEMENT + FANBASE. My book is based on 3 years of dedicated research on these subjects areas where my overall aim of the book was to help small business owners feel….

  1. Empowered to run their business their way, and no longer be at the mercy of Marketing Companies or PR departments
  2. Knowledgeable about what they need to do, and the steps they need to take, to get the most out of Facebook for their Business as a FREE ONLINE MARKETING TOOL
  3. Aware of the various PAID OPTIONS available to them within Facebook
  4. Skilled with the tools they need to make a choice between the various FREE and PAID options that Facebook is making available to all businesses, as it best suits their mission, aims, purpose and intentions of their business.

Bottom line is, Facebook has leveled the playing field for all businesses. Online marketing is no longer confined to the big businesses with the big marketing budget. Small business now has the ability to make a big splash online if they treat Facebook as their online marketing partner and learn how to best utilise the tools available to them

So for my 2 cents worth on this topic folks, it’s not about what Facebook can do for you FOR FREE, it’s about how you can BEST USE the features that Facebook is offering you, to maximise the benefits for your business. This is how I see it. In other words, get this into perspective people, let’s get our big pants on and let’s get on with dealing with the changes at hand. Did we complain when floppy discs went to CD? And when CD’s went to DVD? No, we just evolved. So let’s evolve what we need to do, rather than whinge about it….

Oh, and another thing, Facebook (and all of Social Media), is also primarily about building community and sharing your knowledge, love and wisdom with your customers. It is about creating an opportunity for your clients to connect with you on a “Social” platform. Let’s not forget that it’s not just about making a dollar. These other “touchy-feely” aspects of Facebook are just as important as any other reason to use Facebook to promote your business.

Overall folks, let’s keep positive about this! We couldn’t expect ALL the Facebook features to STAY FREE FOREVER right? Seriously? We forget that Facebook is a  PRIVATE COMPANY, and they need to MAKE MONEY too, just like you and I. Can we really blame them for adding some EXTRA PAID OPTIONS in an effort to make money and elevate their share price? Can we begrudge them this? I don’t see any other company that is publicly-listed on the Global Stock Exchange, come under this much scrutiny because of their efforts to try to make some cashola and bring home some bacon….

It would have been really nice for Facebook to have stayed completely 100% free forever, but this is a fantasy. The true reality is that we live in a world of business, driven by cash, and the need to generate it. Facebook is no different in this desire and need to make a profit

I would love to hear your thoughts on this very hot topic Peeps? Leave me a comment on my Facebook Page, and let’s have a good pow-wow….

PS. And for the cynics out there, I am not paid, reimbursed or compensated in any way shape or form, by the  Facebook Corporation, to say anything favourable or positive about them. These opinions are my own and are completely unsolicited. Yep, I truly believe that Facebook Business Pages are  the best thing for small business since sliced bread. But then, I fully embrace the best of all the online tools available for my business, free, almost free or totally unfree.

Buy “Novice2Ninja – Facebook for Business” , eBook or Printed, here

Request a Call-Back to chat about a 1-on-1 Session with Francesca

Grab your seat to the upcoming Facebook Business Workshop here

Join us at “The Social Media Club” here

And I would be totally over the moon if you shared this post with your friends in your favourite online playground. Thank you xx

With Gratitude
Francesca Esposito-Rose B.Inf.Tech.
Business Mentor, Online Specialist, Author, Speaker & FaceBook Business Specialist

{Photos Courtesy of FreeDigitalPhotos.net}

 

How Scheduled Posts can Save You Time & Get You More Fans

Business FacebookHave you discovered the “Scheduled Posts” feature on Facebook yet? There are some Facebook features that are “take it or leave it”, but every once in a while, Facebook actually adds a function that is really, really neat. And the “schedule” button is one of those functions that really gets me rocking and rolling. It’s only been introduced very recently, so it’s not surprsing if it hasn’t caught your eye yet. It’s been a real life-saver really.

This little beauty allows you to “calendarise” your Facebook posts.

So if you wanted to release a particular post at 7pm tonight but you’d rather be watching the latest episode of “How I Met Your Mother” with your teenager, then you can schedule the post to be released at 7pm tonight, without the need to be in the same room as your PC at all, during this essential-TV-viewing-teenager-bonding-time.

There are significant benefits in using the “Schedule” button….

  1. You can quickly type your posts when it is most convenient for you (eg during a quiet period of your business) to be displayed “out of your standard business hours”. This means you are not tied to your PC when you would rather be having a life {shock horror}
  2. Conversely, if you have an event coming up (or an uber-busy work-week planned), and you think you will be too busy to post during work hours for a while, then you can schedule your posts out of hours, to be released during business hours, at a time when you know you will be tied up. Your business then still appears in the News Feeds of your Fans, rather than missing out on visibility all together during that time period. This gives your business the crucial exposure it needs, when it needs it most, and the potential to gather more Fans, even while you are too busy to “be there” on Facebook.

Some crucial pointers….

  1. Don’t use Hootsuite or any other “External” programs to post to Facebook.  Yes you can use these programs to post to Twitter and other Social Platforms, for sure, but not for Facebook. It will affect your Edgerank (Facebook Business Page Ranking), and not in a good way. I have written a previous blog post about what Edgerank is here. This is crucial to understand for Facebook Business Success, but in a nutshell, you need to be “inside” Facebook when you post. So don’t be tempted to post from an outside program to save you time, instead, the best time-saving function available to you within Facebook is the “Schedule” function. So use it to your heart’s content.
  2. Think about the best “times” to post. I share my extensive research on this topic in detail in my book and give you loads of tips on how to work out the best times for you to post in your business. You need to meet your target market at the best times, otherwise you are wasting your time on Facebook and I show you in my book the steps to figure this out specifically for your business (every business is different and hence the “best times” to post is different too). However if you would like some personalised help to work out the best times to post for your business, we can explore this in a 1-on-1 session together if that suits you better.

So, where to find this said “Schedule button”… {drum roll please}….

As this is only a new-ish feature (September 2012), most of my clients haven’t noticed this button yet, which is not surprising since Facebook seem to be moving the furniture around almost every day….

Funnily enough, the “Schedule button” is actually right under your nose …..

scheduling Facebook posts

  1. To setup a “scheduled post” simply click inside the “Status bar” and start typing your post
  2. When you are finished typing, click the small clock icon on the bottom left hand corner of the status box (note that this tiny clock icon does not appear until you actually click your cursor inside the status box, and then it appears, as if by magic)
  3. When you click the clock (try saying this ten times fast!), a “Year” pops up. Just choose the year you would like your post to be displayed. I suggest keeping your posts to within the week (too much can happen in your business between now and next year!)
  4. After you select a year, a month option pops up, and so on for day, and time
  5. Click the Schedule button on the bottom right of the status box, to diarise this post for the time you have specified. For this dummy example above on “The Like Effect” Facebook Page, I entered 7:30 tomorrow morning so that my post could “appear” in the Facebook news feed starting 7:30am

But what if I change my mind?

Do not fear, Facebook have thought of this as well. To change the posts that you have “scheduled”….

  1. Click on “Edit Page”
  2. Select “Use Activity Log”
  3. And you will see all your scheduled posts there in a list
  4. Here you can change the date and time of the future-dated posts, or cancel them all-together, so you still have full control over your posts even though they are diarised….

activity log Facebook for Business

If you’re looking for more information on this topic, or want to discover how best to use Facebook for your business, join us for the upcoming Facebook for Business Workshop, get my book or reach out to me for a 1-on-1 mentoring session…. And let’s get this party started!

Buy “Novice2Ninja – Facebook for Business” , eBook or Printed, here

Request a Call-Back to chat about a 1-on-1 Session with Francesca

Grab your seat to the upcoming Facebook Business Workshop here

Join us at “The Social Media Club” here

And I would be tickled pink if you shared this page with your friends in your favourite online playground just here….

With Gratitude
Francesca Esposito-Rose B.Inf.Tech.
Business Mentor, Online Specialist, Author, Speaker & FaceBook Business Specialist

{Photos Courtesy of FreeDigitalPhotos.net}

Social Media for the Time-Poor Small Business

Business facebookLast month, we launched “The Social Media Club”, the world’s first. We had a great night of laughter and connection, and most importantly, brainstorming with like-minded business owners where we got to find out that every small business owner is in the same boat. When you’re a crew of one, you have to work smarter not harder, be savvy and efficient, whilst standing on one leg and singing la-la-la-la-lahhhh, in tune. So on this night, all “Clubbers” discovered that they were not alone, and that there are better ways of doing things… especially in the world of “Social Media”….

“The Social Media Club” is being held on the 4th Thursday of every month and at each “Club” meeting I will be giving a short talk on the hottest “Social” topic of the month, as well as answer your BURNING QUESTIONS that have been concerning you, in your world of Social Media.

Last month, the topic on everyone’s lips was “How do I manage my Social Media when I am time poor?” Do I hear you screaming too?

I thought I’d blog the talk I gave, in case you missed it, and the champagne, and the fun…. but come and join us for the next “Social Media Club” coming up on Thursday 25th October 6.30-8.30pm, and join in the fun, in person……

So here’s my Top-7-Tips on “How to manage your Social Media when you are Time Poor” (READ: How to Save your Sanity whilst riding the Social Media Train)….

  1.  Choose 1-2 Social Media platforms and DO THEM WELL. There is no point stressing about jumping onto all the social medias. There is simply no point being a jack-of-trades and master-of-none. It’s not going to help to brand and position your business in the market-place if you “do” a Social platform badly. I recommend to my clients to choose the one or two that will best suit their business, and focus on those. (If you need some help selecting these, reach out to me, I can help you get clear on what social platforms will best suit your business). The key here is to give your customers “some” way of  “connecting” with you on one or two of the Social platforms. But don’t worry about meeting all customers on all the platforms. It’s simply unrealistic in the real world of small business, to be everywhere. In my extensive research in writing my book Novice2Ninja, I discovered that Facebook is THE ONE platform that just about every business needs to be on (which is why I wrote a book about it). It’s very powerful, and THE platform that 1 billion peeps spend, oh, only 3 billion hours on, DAILY. And once you get the hang of Facebook, only THEN look at a 2nd platform. Perhaps Twitter, or LinkedIN or Pinterest, but this would depend entirely on the type of business you’re in and what your “personal strengths” are. For example, if you don’t like to write, then there is no point starting a “written” blog. However, you may consider starting a “visual” blog, if you like to take pictures, and if a visual blog would suit the aims of your business! This is part of the “Social Media Strategy” that I can help you define and get clear on in a 1-on-1 mentoring session….
  2. Add “Social Media” to your DAILY ROUTINE. Yup, good ol’ fashioned, “if it’s not in your routine, it won’t get done” trick. You know, like your mama always says. So when you’re sitting down to do your emailing or phone calls, your ordering or processing your enquiries, just add 10 minutes to that routine for Social Media management. Until you get the swing of it, it may take longer than 10 minutes a day, but once you get your head around it, 10 minutes a day is achievable. The key here is manage your Social Media DAILY. So whatever you do every, tag your Social Media management onto the end of that routine. Then you know it will get done. Consistency is key here.
  3. SCHEDULE your posts. There are some Facebook features that are “take it or leave it”, but every once in a while, Facebook actually add a function that is really, really neat. And the “schedule” button is one of those functions that I ADORE. It is a life-saver really.  I have written a separate post about how to use the “Schedule” function here, but bottom line is that it allows you to “calendarise” your Facebook posts. So if you wanted to release a particular post at 7pm tonight but you’d rather be watching the latest episode of “How I met your mother” with your teenager, then you can schedule the post to be released at this time. I have found this function to be the most-time saving of all functions because I can quickly type my posts when it is most convenient for me, and I am not tied to my PC when I would rather be having a life {shock horror}. Also don’t use Hootsuite or any other “External” programs to post to Facebook.  Yes you can use these programs to post to Twitter and other Social Platforms, but not for Facebook. It will affect your Edgerank, and not in a good way. I have written a previous blog post about what Edgerank is here, this is crucial to understand for Facebook Business Success, but in a nutshell, you need to be “inside” Facebook when you post. So don’t be tempted to post from an outside program to save you time, instead, the best time-saving function available to you within Facebook is the “Schedule” function. Use it to your heart’s content.
  4. Take the pressure off ORIGINAL CONTENT and supplement your posts with CURATED CONTENT. I do recommend in my book “Novice2Ninja” that posting about 2-3 times a week is ideal. If you wanted to read a more detailed guideline on how often to post and when to post, to suit your business, you can get my book here. But many business owners say to me “I don’t have time to write a post every day“. You don’t need to. Yes you do need to COLLECT your own ideas and write your own posts based on what is happening in your business, a couple times a week. This is so that your story is seeping through to your tribe of loyal fans. But for the other 4-5 days a week, just CURATE content instead and take the pressure off yourself! This means, share posts from your news feed! This will save you loads of time, and hopefully dispels the myth that you need to post something original every day. I don’t have a blog post about this topic as this subject area has many implications and can not be simplified in a blog post, however the best advice I have about HOW TO COLLECT & CURATE CONTENT, is in my book. In fact I have dedicated half the book to this topic, which should signal to you that the topic of content is of vital importance to your online success, on any Social platform platform, not just Facebook. TIP: When you share a post from your news feed, make sure it’s relevant to your business though. I talk alot about what is “relevant” to a business, and what is not, in  my book as well.
  5. REPLY to comments. On some days, this is all I have time for. But it’s SOMETHING. It is an activity that WILL get your business into the news feed of your Fans, and remember, the more eyeballs that see your posts, the better (more fans leads to potentially more sales. This is grossly over-simplified, again, the full process and cause and effect, of how to make money in your business using the platform of social media, is fully explained in my book). Many businesses ask me “should I reply to comments?” My reply always is “would you ignore someone that  walks into your shop?” You get the picture. Don’t ignore your Fans. If a Follower has taken the time to visit your Facebook Page (which is essentially like your shop, but online), then take the time to RESPOND to their comment. It’s good business practice, it may lead to sales, and it also gives you a “quickie” social media “burst” in the news feed of your Fans, if your plate that day is like a juggling act. Hey, we all have those days where 37 hours is not enough, right?!?!?!? Therefore replying to comments is a quickie solution on days like this…
  6. Don’t see Social Media AS A PAIN. If your head-space towards Social Media is that it’s a thorn in your side, and the bain of your existence, then you are not seeing the true potential of Social Media and how it can really work for you. If you can find a way to use Facebook as market research, your mindset towards Social Media will shift (towards the positive). Imagine being stuck on which product to launch but knowing that you had a place where you could take your products to the market place, ask your target market their opinion on which product they liked, and then only launching the product that is most well received? Imagine how much money and time you could save by not being sucked down the rabbit hole of bad product-launch choices? Weeeeeeelllllll. Facebook is one such place! I encourage all my clients to “test” their products before launch, on their Facebook pages, to ensure their Peeps are into what they are doing. I advised my client to do just this, and to test her 2 x book cover choices on her Facebook Page. Check out Dani’s form here at this link….  This “market testing” is giving us valuable data that we otherwise would never have had access to! This is Market Research being streamed straight from the market-place!!! THIS IS GOLD ! You can’t PAY for this sort of market research. Well, you can, but it would cost you thousands. On Facebook, you can do all your market testing , FOR FREE.
  7. Get some Training. Social Media is just another platform for you to sell your products for your business. Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIN –> these are all just systems that you need to operate to win these sales. And like all systems, you need some training to ensure you are avoiding the pitfalls and maximising the benefits. This is especially true for Social Media. I highly recommend reading a book, getting a mentor or doing a workshop in Social Media. And rather than begrudge this as “another thing you have to do”, see this as an investment in tech-proofing your business for the future. After all, there is no point building a Facebook page for a year and sucking at it. Wouldn’t it be nice to be able to hit the ground running, know what to do and what not to do? My November Workshops are just about sold out, so jump in and grab your seat now while’s there’s one waiting for you. But if group-love is not your ‘thang’, then 1-on-1 mentoring might suit you better if you prefer to learn at your own individual pace. Or if book-learning floats your boat, then my book Novice2Ninja starts you at the beginning, and takes you through to mastery level of Facebook. However you like to learn, I’ve got the support you need covered to help you get your Business cracking on Social Media…..

Buy “Novice2Ninja – Facebook for Business” , eBook or Printed, here

Request a Call-Back to chat about a 1-on-1 Session with Francesca

Grab your seat to the November Facebook Business Workshop here

RSVP to “The Social Media Club” here

Either way, I look forward to answering your BURNING QUESTIONS at the monthly “The Social Media Club” and connecting with the brilliant and committed business owners that make up the very savvy and very smart, small business sector!

And I would be as happy as Larry if you shared this page with all your friends in your favourite online playground just here….

With Gratitude
Francesca Esposito-Rose B.Inf.Tech.
Business Mentor, Online Specialist, Author, Speaker & FaceBook Business Specialist