May 3, 2010
Unless you’ve been living under a rock for the past 4 years, you would know how popular and widely used Facebook is today.
Just a few short years ago, you had to encourage all your family and friends to join this social networking website (just after others convinced you to join). Nowadays, it’s rare to find someone who hasn’t got a Facebook account.
At last count, there were over 350 million users on Facebook and this number is continuing to grow. It overtook MySpace as the number 1 social networking website on the planet last year and is just behind Google when it comes to online traffic. You are then able to understand how important Facebook marketing has become for all websites.
It’s Not A Pitch Zone
The most important thing to remember about social media is that it is not a place to blatantly and endlessly pitch your product or service. If you do this, then you will not get any favours from social media users and will get largely ignored and even bad reviews.
What social media is used for is for building relationships with potential clients. There are a number of ways you can do this:
- you can post helpful information (links) where you help them solve a problem
- you can personally chat with them and assist them you can create content addressing the needs of users and posting it
The bottom line is that you want to be seen as genuine and helpful. This way, word can get out that you’re the real deal and before you know it, people will become interested in what you have to offer in terms of products and services.
Of course, the things you share on social networking sites such as Facebook shouldn’t be the nitty gritty stuff that you have to offer. You should share helpful information in the form of teasers that will interest people enough to ask and wonder if there’s more. Offering free stuff is great for getting attention too.
How To Market On Facebook
The great thing about Facebook is that from the outset, it has encouraged all users to use the website as a means of sharing information and marketing whatever they please. As a consequences, it has created various ways for users to do this. You are not obliged to use every single one of them but a combination of them can only improve your Facebook marketing.
This is probably the marketing tool out there on Facebook. On its website Facebook describes Pages as “a public Profile that enables you to share your business and products with Facebook users.” It is specifically designed for promoting a business and everything it has to offer. People can then become a Fan of your page and when they do this, they let their friends know that they’ve become a Fan of your page via their News Feed. The potential for your Page to gain a lot of popularity in a small period of time is great.
Of course, it all depends on the content you put out there for people to use. You need to give them a reason to become a Fan of your Page and a reason for them to keep being one.
This allows to create events to be held at a certain date and time. Depending on what type of business you are, you can create one to be held locally or internationally. It can be any one of the following:
- seminar – it should be introductory and free but you could promote a paid one too
- webinar – an online seminar and where anyone worldwide can join
- product/service launch – you may be about to launch a product or service and this is a way to gain attention
The best part about creating an event on Facebook is that it can go viral and before you know it people will be attending your event in droves.
Finally, about a year ago, Facebook introduced an advertising service where people can put ads promoting their website or their Facebook Page and they pay per click (PPC) or impression (CPM). It works in a similar way to Google Adwords.
The best thing is that you can target your bads based on both geographical locations and social actions. For example, if you were a wedding photographer and wanted to promote your services, your ads can be set up to appear only to females between the ages of 24 and 30 and whose relationship statuses indicate they are engaged.
It must be noted, however, that Facebook Advertising is still in beta mode which only means that it will only improve in the near future.
If you wanted to market your website online, you would be absolutely nuts not to use Facebook marketing as one of your key strategies. Just be careful not to get caught up in it too much because it can become a very time consuming activity.
Martin Sejas is a leading online marketing consultant based in Sydney who specialises in helping local business use their websites to get more clients. Register for a free consultation today.