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How to Maximize the Effectiveness of Facebook for Your Small Business

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How to Maximize the Effectiveness of Facebook for Your Small Business

By kmurray, Contributor and Moderator
Published: January 23, 2014

Does your small business maintain a Facebook page? Are you thinking about venturing into social media with a presence on this ever-growing social network? Mari Smith, often referred to as “The Queen of Facebook,” offers some insight to help you use it most effectively.

Understand the fundamentals

Before jumping head first into Facebook, consider some fundamental questions. Ask yourself:

  • Why am I on Facebook in the first place?  
  • What am I trying to do here?
  • Am I trying to just generate fans and get better sentiment for my brand or actually sell product or improve customer service or just get visibility?

Have a clear idea of what your goals are with your Facebook account so that you can measure your successes properly – and not based on standards that don’t fit what you’re trying to accomplish.

Think strategically

Smith says, “It’s really a matter of strategically thinking through what content you are posting in a manner that people are top of mind. You are top of mind because they have built this relationship with you and you’re in their news feed, sharing valuable content and sparking interest.”

Be smart about what you decide to post on Facebook – what are you trying to achieve with each update? Smith adheres to an 80/20 rule. So, 80% of the time you engage on Facebook, you’ll share “a mix of your content, articles, resources and tools.” For the other 20% of the time, you’ll post content that asks for the sale or lead.

This mix can add a lot of value to your page, which Smith suggests updating once or twice a day. With a varied approach, you won’t be bombarding visitors with requests for sales all the time, but you’ll be memorable because of interesting content that resonates with people and gives them a positive impression.

Be realistic

“One thing to keep in mind as a small business owner is that just because you have 1,000 fans, all 1,000 of those people are not seeing your posts. It could be a fraction of those.” Smith warns that the misconception of views is something she sees a lot with Facebook use. In reality, she says, only between 2% – 48% of page fans will see your updates.

So what’s Smith’s recommendation for small business Facebook use? She suggests approaching it “from the standpoint of generating email leads and gently guiding people to cross into your funnel, your e-mail list, your blog, your website and looking into your offers.” Used effectively and realistically, Facebook can be a powerful contender in your arsenal of marketing tools.

Related Resources

About the Author:

Katie Murray

Contributor and Moderator

I am an author and moderator for the the SBA.gov Community. I'll share useful information for your entrepreneurial endeavors and help point you in the right direction to find other resources for your small business needs. Thanks for joining our online community here at SBA.gov!

Comments:

Boosting posts is also very effective when you've set your targeting properly. For $5 you can gain a lot of outreach to your media.
Thank you for sharing this article, Facebook is a social network to help businesses better access to customers, so that a business should maintain a facebook page. And frequent content updates for it
I manage a niche facebook account and post articles regularly. However, I did not get many fans. After reading your article, I think the biggest problem is my articles. I have posted good articles with good information, but are truly a bit boring. So the next thing I need to do is to post very interesting articles which people like to read and like to share with their friends. Thanks for sharing your knowledge with us!
Excellent article and great reminders on how to use Facebook for business. Adding to your point that only 2%-48% of your page fans see your status update in their newsfeed, don't be afraid to post the same or similar message more than once. There is nothing wrong with this. If you have a really important message that all your followers should see, this will increase the chance they see your update. Because only a fraction of your fans see each update, you don't have to worry about annoying them. Chances are they will only see the update once.
This is definitely a great post for businesses looking to get on board with social media. Facebook is a very important social media platform for businesses and you must be active on it for it to work. One thing I would like to add is that you can also create a mini website for your business inside Facebook for free. If you sell things online you can also add an inventory tab to your Facebook page for free using one of many available Facebook apps for business.
I'm also trying to get customers from facebook but still not efficient. Hopefully there is an effective method !
Having Facebook Pages is not enough as you need to engage your audience. Keep them interested in your subject, products, and services with constant updates. Eventually, they will want to know more and check you out. [A link was removed from this post. Please review our Community Best Practices.]
I agree. Facebook have millions user on over the world. So facebook marketing is also a potential niche for small business
I agree, you shouldn't direct sell on FB, nor ’talk shop’ all day long either. Besides the 80-20 Rule, don't forget the Golden Rule and treat others how you'd want to be treated. Engage your audience without the soap box and they will respect you more. :)
It's great to read an article that discusses the strategy behind social media. Businesses need to find the social channel where their consumers are already spending time and focus on that channel. This will make your social media strategy much more effective. Thank you for spreading the word about the 80/20 rule. All businesses need to be reminded to engage, interest, and excite their audience, not constantly sell.

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