Just in case you missed Facebook Marketing Tip #1… click here
Have a Purpose
There is a definite issue that comes with social media marketing of any kind: Facebook in particular carries a potential pitfall of being a serious distraction to a business owner or marketer.
The only real way to avoid this pitfall is to set a few rules of engagement and most of all, have a clear purpose.
Here are some goals that should help you focus your efforts:
Goal #1: Expand your reach
Marketing with Facebook should almost always involve the goal of reaching key people that you don’t already have good connection with. This is also one of the most powerful elements of marketing with social media in general.
If you are a loan officer, you may target real estate agents. If you are an advertising sales professional, you may want to target the heads of marketing for medium to large size companies with proven ad budgets.
Expanding your reach when it comes to Facebook is about finding the key people and requesting that they be your friend. My personal experience is that about 60-75% of all friend requests that I make are accepted, so don’t worry about whether they will or they won’t accept you. This is still business – they know it and you know it.
One last comment about “reach” – Having a large group of friends on Facebook is impressive to your visitor. It’s a form of “social proof” that is invaluable to the conversion of a prospect into a client or customer. If so many people are your friends, you must be worth knowing… get it?
At this point I need to make a distinction between using Facebook Fan Pages as compared to using your Facebook Profile for marketing purposes. The answer is much about preference but it likely involves the type of business that you have. I find that local service based businesses such as mortgage, real estate and insurance professionals get good traction by using profiles but higher advertising based businesses get good traction with fan pages. Here’s the short answer to the question: Use BOTH – Facebook is emerging as the next Google and too many folks jumped on Google too late. Don’t make that mistake. Market with both profile and fan pages; there are good reasons to do both.
For the purpose of this post, I’m discussing Facebook Profile Marketing as a solid social media strategy.
When requesting friendship of key prospects in your target marketing, keep in mind that Facebook is social. Stay away from pitch based interaction completely and build that relationship through engagement.
Goal #2: Provide value
Providing value is key to winning the hearts and minds of your target market. Be free with information that will help your friends on Facebook to better their success in life or business.
The internet is filled with good (not all) content that you can quickly mine out and distribute to your friends or fans on Facebook. Make sure it’s quality and it applies. There’s no reason to just throw information out. Quality is better than quantity in this case. The better the value of the content, the more likely it is to actually engage with your connections. Mediocre content allows your connections to eventually assume that what you post is not worth their time. Don’t let that happen or you’ve blown a good opportunity.
Goal #3: Be interactive
You should spend a few minutes each day joining conversations, liking and commenting on other people updates.
The value here is multifold and worthy of an entire blog post but the short of it is: viral exposure to other networks, visual exposure to the one you are commenting on relational exposure by showing interest as a human being.
Goal #4: Bring the conversation offline
Again, this post is focused on local (sales professional based) business marketing. This type of business is mostly handled on a face to face, handshake basis. To bring the conversation to the next level, hold an event and invite your fans or friends to attend. The event should now start to move the conversation toward business. The event should be a big value gift to your target market.
This is not a new strategy in marketing. With that said, event based marketing is still one of the single most powerful marketing strategies around and too many sales professionals or business owners take a pass on it’s power. Converting even 5-10 new Facebook friends to a seminar, webinar, round table or worthy charity event is like an engagement ring in a hopeful relationship. It’s not a closed deal but you can almost put a date on the sale.
The reality of our times is that marketing with Facebook is no longer an optional endeavor. These goals will help you to be focused and productive in your efforts.
I’m very interested in your comments and I’d love to connect via Facebook and Twitter.
Photo credit given to nikkipilkington.com