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Using Facebook to Market Your Business

Facebook Is a Revolutionary Business Tool, but It Isn’t Magical Marketing Pixie Dust

With 9 billion users, Facebook is far and away the most famous social network on earth. If Facebook were a country, it would contain the third largest population, behind China and India.

And like China and India, Facebook possesses its own distinctive customs and norms, and you should understand them in order to fully leverage the site’s potential as a marketing tool.

When I see businesses go wrong on Facebook, it’s often because they don’t bother to understand the local customs.

Tread lightly

What makes Facebook different from other social networks? It’s the fact that users have strong ties with each other. They are linked with their friends, their family members, their in-laws as well as their long-lost friends from grade school. They share intimate aspects of their lives. Such things as:

  • Birthday celebrations
  • High school graduation footage
  • Baby photos
  • Wedding announcements

The upshot for businesses? They have to be conscientious and careful in their approach. You can’t apply the old forms of one-way, direct-response marketing on Facebook, since people aren’t there to hear sales pitches. They’re not necessarily in a buying mindset. They’re in a socialising mindset. You have to respect that.

Keep it real (for real)

If you try to port the old model of marketing into Facebook, you will be disappointed. “With Facebook, marketers of any size can do effective, word-of-mouth marketing at scale for the very first time,” says Annie Ta, a Facebook spokesperson. “But Facebook is all about authenticity, if your small business is not authentic or engaging with customers in a fashion that feels genuine, the community will see right through it.”

Don’t be fooled: It’s supposed to be hard

Don’t be fooled by social media “gurus” who make outrageous promises about effortless Facebook success. Social media is about creating relationships and influence—and this needs time to work.

Many businesses believe that when they set up a page on Facebook, that’s all they have to do. Marketing on Facebook is definitely an extremely effective way to reach local customers (we wouldn’t be talking about it if it weren’t).

But here’s the rub: it’s also challenging (and rewarding) if you’re doing it correctly. The payback is well worth the investment in time and attention. Based upon a study from Social Media Examiner, nearly two-thirds of small businesses engaged in social media claim that Facebook has enhanced their overall marketing effectiveness, and 80 percent report forming new partnerships after just two years of participation.

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Posted: 26/02/2013 08:05:30 by Global Administrator | with 0 comments
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