Facebook has become ubiquitous in recent years as the go-to social network for everyone, including business owners. While the site offers users the ability to keep up with friends and family, it also offers business owners the chance to promote products and engage users. Unfortunately, far too few business owners are taking advantage of the latter: the ability to engage users. These days, company Facebook profiles are rife with blatant advertising and self-promotion, and while this may work in theory during the short term, the fact is that corporate success through social media is built on engagement, not selling or promoting a brand.
Creating an Audience Development Strategy
In order to truly maximize the potential that Facebook offers in terms of generating interest in new customers and retaining the attention of current customers, it’s important to understand who your connections are and what they want. Yes, you’ve designed and produced some amazing widgets, but so what? Thousands of other companies have done so as well, so why should consumers engage with your company on Facebook over your competition? The answer lies within the problem: engagement. You want to engage with your customers and potential customers in order to pull them in your direction. Engagement means not only producing content to share with your connections, but also enticing them to interact with your brand and their connections on Facebook. This can happen through comments, private messages, and shares as well as tagging connections in your updates.
How to Engage Facebook Users
As mentioned, the problem that many companies run into on Facebook is that they aren’t willing to actively engage their customers, instead, supplementing valuable time and other resources with self-promotion and advertising. Instead, engagement must be viewed as a process. First, you need to discover who your customers are and what they like. In a sense, what is the lifestyle that they share? Using Facebook, you can view your connections’ profiles and figure out everything from the music they like to the linguistic terms they use in status updates. Never before have brands had so much insight directly into the minds and lives of consumers! Next, incorporate these elements into your updates in a natural way that not only reflects your brand, but also your connections’ tastes.
Finally, you need to make sure that you’re updating your brand’s Facebook content often in order to make the most impact. Regular updates will be more likely to improve engagement, whereas failing to update on a regular basis will likely lead connections to forget about your company. What’s worse is that failing to update on a regular basis may lead connections to take your brand less seriously as it will appear that you don’t have anything to talk about. Beware, however, updating too much. If you’re bombarding Facebook users many times a day, even if the content is relevant and engaging, you’ll likely end up being placed on the “ignore” list, or even unfollowed altogether.