9 Social Media Tips for Small Businesses

9 Social Media Tips for Small Businesses

As a small business, your marketing budget is probably very limited, and that’s why social media is а must.

Social media is a great way to discover new fans or potential customers, it’s also very good for communicating with existing potential users. By not being on social media, you’d be losing out on a lot of potential connections, which could’ve brought more sales.

The question “How to use social media for small business?” might have popped up in your head.

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This article is going to explain how to use social media for small business. By implementing these social media marketing tips, you’d be on the way to the top before you even start posting.

1. Make Sure Your Website Is as Good as It Gets

Before jumping into social media, make sure that your website looks trustworthy, performs well, and is able to handle high traffic. There’s no point in creating a social media marketing plan with a broken website. Since your social media profiles will direct users to your site, pay attention to it.

Host your site with a dependable web hosting company (here are some of the best cheap web hosting picks), invest thought and time into finding a suitable design, and make sure your site is SEO optimized.

Want to look for premium, fast, fully-managed, and safe hosting solutions? Try the following:

Kinsta

Flywheel

WPEngine (Get 3 months free)

10Web

Cloudways

Read: How to Increase WordPress Website Speed (10 Proven Solutions)

2. Create a Marketing Plan

A good business always starts with a plan. You can’t just start posting without having a planned posting schedule or a goal that you want to reach. These things are necessary to determine your actions.

Without a plan, you’ll just be going in blind and not be able to correctly measure the progress you’ve made. To create a productive social media marketing plan, there are a few necessary steps you need to take:

  • Research the topic you’re gonna post about. In order to post attractive content, you need to know what attracts people. Your competitors are a good place to start this research, as they have already acquired an audience that is similar to what you need. Choose a topic that covers the niche that your business is in.
  • Set measurable and relevant goals. These goals should be social media related, usually likes or views, but can also be related to how much traffic they’re driving to your website or how many sales are happening because of them. There’s no limit to creativity.
  • Analyse competition. Look through your competitors’ profiles and get inspired. This will help you determine the content that works with your target group. Never copy! Just gather ideas.
  • Determine the content. This is paramount to success. There’s a rule called “80-20”, which basically means that 80% of your content should be informative and 20% promotive.

3. Don’t Invest Much in The Beginning

You probably know that social media is free to use, but did you know you can pay to reach more people?

It might be tempting to invest a lot of money in advertising and sponsored posts straight from the beginning. I don’t recommend any business that – invest little by little. Spare, let’s say, $5 for a single post on a platform of choice for sponsored advertising.

Track the performance of that post – does it pay off? Does your profile get more views, likes, and clicks on a link to your website?

Before investing huge sums, try the waters first.

4. Determine Which Platforms Suit Your Business

Using social media for small business is a great way to acquire customers, but determining which platforms to use can be a bit tricky.

Surprisingly, the statistics show a picture that more than 60% of baby boomers in the US use Facebook and YouTube. Look for statistics like these when selecting platforms.

However, use your common sense, too. If your small business sells something visually appealing – Instagram should be your focus platform as it concentrates more on visual content. Do you manage a business that, let’s say, deals with accounting? LinkedIn is the way to go – it’s a platform aimed at professionals.

Choose 2-3 social media platforms and concentrate your marketing, funds, and content on them.

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5. Define Your Audience

Social media lets you target any specific audience. It allows you to choose a specific set of audience characteristics, especially for paid advertising.

This is why it’s very important to understand your audience. Take a piece of paper and write down any common things the members of your audience have. For example, the audience of a fishing store has the fishing hobby in common, they like to read about that.

The more detailed you define your audience, the better – but don’t go over the board. While it’s good to know every detail about your audience, it can greatly restrict customer acquisition.

Facebook has an audience creation tool which includes a “lookalike audience”. This feature will find users similar to an audience you select, users that might like your content.

6. Quality or quantity?

Most people would answer this question with a single word – quality. But that might not always be correct. There isn’t always a need for extremely high-quality posts or pictures. Finding the balance between quality and quantity is the best way to go.

For example, a local café doesn’t need to post extremely high-quality pictures taken with a DSLR and a $1300 lens. Often times, a smartphone is enough. Instead of wasting money on buying an expensive DSLR or paying somebody that already owns one, they can just take pictures with a smartphone.

Smartphones nowadays take great pictures. With modern technology, they even excel in night photography. Some smartphones even automatically add effects to beautify the picture.

However, for written content, I always prefer quality over quantity. There isn’t a fast way to build good written content, and readers want to read something interesting and unique.

7. Communicate

You already have a Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, or LinkedIn page. Now you need to accommodate the followers. They ask a question? You answer the question. They post something about you? Maybe join in the conversation. A good idea would be incorporating a Facebook messenger chatbot. This way, you can always be available to your customers. 

Have you seen Wendy’s twitter account? It’s amazing how much they interact with their audience. They even get into some heated roast-battles at times, it’s interesting to read even for someone who doesn’t have access to their food.

8. Find Helpful Tools

Managing social media accounts is hard enough even without having multiple accounts. However, there are tools that help automate social media tasks. Tools like Hootsuite and Sprout Social will definitely help you free up some time and even increase your social media performance.

A user-friendly chatbot builder will help you create a chatbot without the whole coding hassle. 

A tool I frequently use for my Instagram pictures is Best Hashtags. By entering a keyword into the search box, it will generate hashtags relevant to the keyword you searched for. This makes it easy to post online without doing a lot of hashtag research. Keep in mind this will bring users from all over the world, not just your local place.

Analytic tools should be the top priority for your social media management. By analyzing the posts, you’d know what works and what doesn’t. You would be able to find out the audience that liked a certain post, the audience that clicked a certain link, and more.

Social Media is a Must for Your Small Business

Social media marketing for small business isn’t as easy as it seems. Even if it’s not a large-scale advertisement campaign, it still takes some effort to get it going and keep it going. By utilizing these social media marketing tips you will be able to launch your social media profiles with more knowledge.

You should invest in knowing your audience, pick appropriate platforms, and keep your communication at a golden standard.

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Top Facebook Messenger Chatbot Use Cases That Rock

Top Facebook Messenger Chatbot Use Cases That Rock

Earlier, I established that Facebook Messenger is a powerful platform that you shouldn’t overlook and that you can benefit from the sheer reach and engagement of such a platform.

With more than 1 billion plus users and counting — and given that almost everyone is on the messenger platform — your Facebook messenger chatbot invariably becomes a valuable tool for you to consider for a wide variety of use cases — starting from customer support all the way to help you make sales.

Think of Facebook Messenger chatbots as livechat tools on steroids (with reach thrown in for good measure).


How to Build Facebook Messenger Chatbots

Here are different Facebook messenger use cases that you should seriously consider for your business without ever spending another dime on any sort of usual business resources (like extra staff or special tools):

Distribute your content

If Facebook Messenger is engaging, then it only makes sense to ensure that you are sending out content you produce to your chatbot subscribers (preferably segmented and permission-based).

Your Facebook Messenger bot can be particularly useful to help you request permission to send content, and then actually send content (complete with videos, images, and links to your content) to have your subscribers click through and read what you share.

This works much like your RSS-to-email newsletter campaigns, except that the platform this time is the Facebook messenger.

Spread Awareness & Make them Talk

Can you make a Facebook Messenger Chatbot make people visit restaurants, visit museums, and attend events?

Apparently, you can.

Jam, a Paris-based company, uses a 100% automated Facebook Messenger chatbot using Chatfuel (which uses Artificial Intelligence). Jam helps people search for and partake in unique experiences depending on their individual likes and requirements. All this is done without human intervention.

More than 75% of their total user base has at least one interaction per week with their full-automated chatbot.

Customer support

More than 63% of people are using messenger now more than ever before.

It goes without saying that your Facebook messenger chatbot is a hot recruit for customer support. Facebook messenger chatbots lend themselves as absolutely perfect companions to streamline and automate (or at least semi-automated) your customer support process.

Instead of having to recruit special agents, outsourced staff, or actually hire full-time support staff by the dozens, a single Facebook messenger chatbot can handle many of the initial enquiries all by itself (if you feed it with enough information, that is).

I am not just making this up. The folks at botmakers actually have completely built templates for customer support.

Officially, Facebook reports that The Wall Street Journal reported over 130,000 daily active users acquired in only 14 months of using a Facebook messenger chatbot.

Customer support

Meanwhile, KLM Airlines saw about 40% increase in customer interactions thanks to using Facebook Messenger chatbots.

Got customers? Use a bot. Period

 

Talk to sell (anything)

If you have a way to engage and talk to customers while they are on your website, you unquestionably have more chances to sell to your potential customers. That’s a fact.

Companies like Lego’s “Click to messenger ads” saw a 6X boost in transactions while spending 31% lesser in spend compared to regular conversion-focused ads.

Talk to sell

But if you thought that Facebook messenger chatbots are only for brands that sell regular stuff, you are wrong.

Even Mercedes Benz uses Facebook Messenger Chatbots to sell G Class — their super flagship model.

Talk to sell

Engage. Talk. Sell – how easy can it get? [ Well, it’s still not easy, really]


How to Build Facebook Messenger Chatbots

Also, read:

Facebook Messenger: The Money-maker you are Ignoring
Rise of the Chatbot: 5 Ways You can Use Chatbots for your Business
Tools for Building a Facebook Chatbot (No Coding Needed)
How to Create Facebook Messenger Ads (+ Connect with CRM)

How are you using your Facebook messenger Chatbot? Tell me about it. If not, what’s stopping you from using one?

Powerful Tools For Building a Facebook Chatbot (No Coding Needed)

Powerful Tools For Building a Facebook Chatbot (No Coding Needed)

Are chatbots dead?

Facebook’s M Virtual Assistant doesn’t as well as it should? Erin Griffith and Tom Simonite wrote a piece on Wired speculating that while Facebook did manage to keep M for as long as it did, maybe the technology was ahead of its times and that what customers were demanding were buying the AI technology available now.

Maybe. Maybe not. Erin and Tom can have their opinions, but there’s a strong case for Chatbots (that makes for another post). At least for marketing, there’s a lot that chatbots can do.

Chatbots just kick ass.


How to Build Facebook Messenger Chatbots

 

Facebook Chatbot

Img Credit: Manychat

As such, there are many use cases for Chatbots. According to the folks at Botpress.io, here are a few use cases (quoted as such):

  • A takeaway restaurant allowing customers to order from a chatbot, either in the store or at home.
  • A sit-down restaurant allowing customers to order food from their table using a chatbot.
  • A retail store offering promotions for customers in the shopping mall via the chatbot.
  • A marketing campaign that asks customers questions or allows them to play a game using a chatbot.
  • A chatbot that helps customers make e-commerce purchases.
  • A chatbot that answers customer services questions.
  • A chatbot that monitors employees or customer’s satisfaction
  • A chatbot that allows customers to book flights and receive relevant information when they are in the airport.

 

That’s a pretty awesome list of use cases if you ask me.

As CEO of chattybots.com, Murray Newlands puts it:

“Chatbots are easy to use, don`t request any downloading or unique skills to make them and communicate with them and that is why it makes them number one tool to use when interacting with customers.”

You probably are already using bots in your daily life, asking Siri (Apple) for traffic updates or controlling smart devices in your home via Alexa (Amazon) and these have more conversational human qualities.

Plus, almost 65% of people surveyed by Vibes 2017 Mobile Consumer Report are already comfortable with chatbots.

Further, the number of adults using chatbots is growing phenomenally

 

Facebook Chatbot

Img source: Pew

Also read: Rise of the Chatbot: 5 Ways Using Chatbots Helps Your Business 

Facebook Messenger Platform (Native)

As the original house of the Facebook Chatbot, this is something you’d always want to have as a plan B (or even plan A) despite the tools below.

For one, if you can work with code and find your way to build Facebook Chatbots with the Facebook Messenger platform, it’s unbeatable. You get full-fledged guides, case studies, and a forum for developers this platform making it easy for you to create a professional chatbot in no time.

But then, I get it. Not everyone wants to bury their head in code. For that reason, we move on…


How to Build Facebook Messenger Chatbots

MobileMonkey

MobileMonkey was founded by Larry Kim of the Wordstream fame and also a columnist at Inc.

MobileMonkey doesn’t just help you build chatbots (although that’s where it all starts). With MobileMonkey, you can:

  • Grow your list of messenger contacts
  • Build Chatbots that qualifies leads (so you don’t have to)
  • Create audiences (or segment them) based on intent and interests.
  • Make use of artificial intelligence to serve the exact kind of content your users want. MobileMonkey’s AI engine lets you match user intent triggered by keywords and interactions with relevant content or trigger sequences or messages.
  • Take advantage of the messenger’s 80% + open rates by sending audience-based “blast chats” (10X open rates compared to your regular email blasts).
  • Launch Messenger-only Facebook Ads and Integrate directly with MobileMonkey
  • The easy-to-use chat builder helps you automate or semi-automate tracking purchases, visitor engagement, answer FAQs, making appointments, and more.
  • You can let your chatbot handle basic conversations with your visitors or customers and also choose to step in and override the conversation.
  • Build conversion funnels with your MobileMonkey chatbots. Create conversion-focused workflows, qualify leads, and go from conversations to conversions.

MobileMonkey also acquired  ChattyPeople — World’s #1 Chatbot Builder Tool According to Entrepreneur Magazine — recently.

This adds a lot more power under the hood for MobileMonkey.

ItsAlive

ItsAlive boasts of a super clean interface making it easier for you to build your Facebook Chatbot. You can use the Facebook Chatbot you’d create with Itsalive to engage, help your customers with frequently asked questions, roll out an entire onboarding sequence, or make offers to them as they come visiting.

With itsAlive, you can launch RSS-based content updates (from your blog?), enable your users to subscribe to your preset sequences, send out instant notifications, manage your subscriber lists, monitor activity, and check out analytics from time to time.

Opesta

Opesta seems to be a new kid on the block (and it’s not actually live and ready for you to use unless you sign up — at least at the time of writing this). Opesta is a way for you to squeeze the most of our the Facebook Messenger experience (since almost everyone of the 2.01 billion Facebook users are already there).

As Chatbots certainly seem like they can beat email marketing, Opesta promises you a way to generate more leads, follow up in style with your subscribers, and even deliver your products straight through the Facebook messenger.

ManyChat

Manychat is a tool that helps you build a Facebook Chatbot for marketing and sales. Armed with a visual drag-and-drop builder, you can easily click, drag, and drop your way to make your first Facebook chatbot in 2 minutes flat.

As with most Facebook chatbot tools, you can create instant notifications, send out broadcasts, create complete autoresponders to automate your Facebook Messenger marketing, set custom messages based on user actions or time delays, and much more.
If nothing, Manychat has a handy guide on messenger marketing and automating with chatbots

 

Smooch

Smooch is slightly on the techy side of things (and it might not be for the DIY types) and aims to bring all your communication channels within your app. Also, Smooch might just be for your app or software (and not for a website per se).

It’s an app that allows you to explore the world of multi-channel mobile & app messaging. You can bridge your business apps like Slack with your everyday messenger apps like wechat, for instance. It links these two together and streamlines your conversations into just one app. This considerably saves your time by responding to your customer chats.

But that’s just one of the applications I envisioned. Since we are on the topic of building Facebook chatbots, Smooch certainly has that too, and some more.

Connect your software with voice assistants, email, SMS, social messaging platforms, and then bring context to each conversation since Smooch automatically enriches your users’ profiles (with channel and proprietary data).

With features such as message translator and conversation orchestrator, it can plug everything from your Livechat to chatbot platforms; from CRM to your customer engagement efforts.

Chatfuel

Chatfuel — unlike Smooch which was built for omni-platform consolidation and for a unified experience, while limited to apps and software — is a tool that helps you build chatbots for Facebook without knowing a piece of code.

Whether you are a blogger, publisher, media house, event company, business, or an individual, your can be up and running with a Facebook chatbot in less than 7 minutes.

Chatfuel also allows you to plugin your chats from external sources, so anyone can contribute their own plugins and have others benefit from them.

Chatfuel works by using simple rules and sequences (that you’ll set up, with appropriate content for each). Using triggers (initiated by your visitors), the sequences roll out appropriately.

Of course, it almost always starts with a welcome sequence (or at least a welcome message).

Read my earlier post on How to Build a Facebook Bot with Chatfuel 


How to Build Facebook Messenger Chatbots

Sequel

Sequel promises to help you build Facebook Chatbots with a “personality” — and you know that can keep me hooked up.

But there’s so much more to Sequel with an ability to build a Facebook chatbot given your own particular use case. For instance, you can build a Gamebot with Interactive quizzes and story-based format to hook potential players; you could a personal bot (which is awesome when you are a journalist, an influencer, a public figure, a celebrity, or if you are someone who wants to build a personal brand.

As for businesses, you could build a publisher bot to help distribute and engage your Facebook Chatbot subscribers with the best content on your blog. Or you could build a story bot to try ramp up your engagement with interactive stories  (using branching plots).

At best, you can build a bot to replace you — complete with your personality and style.

The usual features that you expect are all there such as RSS-driven content distribution, message broadcast, group charts, NLP (Natural Language Processing to make your bots smarter over time), Polls, Quizzes, and API integrations.

As with most other tools on this list, you’d need no coding skills (and use their drag-and-drop interface). Answer a few questions and your Facebook bot will be ready.


How to Build Facebook Messenger Chatbots

Botsify

Botsify is a Facebook Chatbot building platform built with a purpose — they want you to be ready for the future, what with integrations (integrate your platform with chatbots, such as via RSS Feed or JSON API),  artificial intelligence, and machine learning all enabled for your Facebook chatbot.

Botsify also allows you to easily integrate your Facebook Chatbots with Alexa, WordPress, and Shopify making your integration that much easier.

Built your Facebook Chatbot with Botsify but you’ll be happy to note that there’s a “Human takeover” feature which lets you cut out the automatic chitter chatter and take control of your conversations.

With Botsify, you can also build lead generation conversation forms helping you make better use of your conversations and lead your visitors towards making sales.

It’s time to consider investing in your very own Facebook chatbot which will prove to be an invaluable asset in driving customer engagement, generating leads, nurturing leads, keeping your customers informed, and obtaining crucial data to your business to add a ripple effect to growth.

So tell me: Do you have a Facebook chatbot yet?


How to Build Facebook Messenger Chatbots

 

Photo by rawpixel.com from Pexels

How to Properly Measure Your Social Media ROI

How to Properly Measure Your Social Media ROI

Note: This is a guest blog post by Michael Deane — the editor of Qeedle. He has been working in digital marketing for over a decade – has managed teams large and small, and still sees every working day as another way to be creative and drive leads and sales.

Why Social Media ROI, you ask? It doesn’t matter if you are doing social media marketing for your own blog, your online business or if you have clients for whom you provide this service – you simply need to know how well your campaigns are working and what your return on investment is.

Unfortunately, many people are unaware of how to do this correctly, settling for various “soft” metrics that can be useful, but which provide almost no data on how effective a social media campaign is on a purely business level.

So, how do you become a true data-driven social media marketer? How do you properly measure the ROI of your social media campaigns?

Defining Precise Goals

The logical first step in calculating and measuring the precise ROI of your social media campaigns is defining the goals that you hope to achieve.
It should be pointed out that goals can involve pretty much anything that can realistically be achieved by using a smart social media strategy. Here are just a few examples:

  • New followers/fans
  • Increased engagement
  • Improved reach
  • Increased traffic to the website from search engines
  • Increased purchases
  • Newsletter signups
  • Downloads of website content

Of course, these are just some examples and you can decide on any goal you wish.
The important thing is that the goal you set is well-defined, precise and measurable. Keep in mind that this is not important only for calculating your ROI. When you learn how social media works, this is one of the first things they teach you – always be as precise as possible with your goals.

Tracking Your Results

Once you decide on what your goals are, you need to determine how you will be tracking the results that your new social media campaign is yielding.

In the vast majority of cases, Google Analytics will provide you with all the stuff you need to track your results and monitor them over time. Of course, this means setting up the analytics for your website and setting different conversion goals (keep in mind that conversion here does not mean strictly conversion, but any goal that you choose).

Over time, you will become more GA-savvy, and you will start getting more precise and actionable insights into your social media campaigns.

This will also enable you to better modify your campaigns and even do tests to find out what you should perhaps change.

It should also be pointed out that there is plenty of specialized social media marketing software out there that you could also research, as it is quite possible some of their options and features might help you track your conversions even more precisely.

It is crucial that you have a way of tracking your conversions and the ongoing success rate of your campaign since this will be crucial for calculating your ROI.

Figuring out Value

When we are talking ROI, we are talking about money, plain and simple. This means that, in order to measure the ROI of your social media campaigns, you need to figure out what kind of value you are getting for each conversion coming from that campaign.

Let’s say that your goal is to increase traffic from social media to your website and you want to know how much each new visitor is worth to you.

You probably already have some figures when it comes to the lifetime value (LTV) of your customers, or how much money an average customer spends with you. You probably also have some stats on how many visitors to your website become your customers.

According to Eckhard Ortwein — CEO & Founder at Lean-Case, The money you spent to convert your visitors into paying customers is the customer acquisition cost (CAC). To build a viable business – the LTV should be significantly higher than the CAC

For instance, you know that 1 in 20 visitors to your website turns into a customer, this means that 2,000 visitors equal 100 customers (on average). If your average LTV is $50, this means that every 2,000 visitors to your website bring in $5,000 total revenue.
Using this simple formula, you can calculate the value for each individual conversion.
Sometimes, there will be cases where the math is not so straightforward and where you will need to be more inventive with the ways in which you will assign values to conversions, like, for example, approximating values based on common sense or comparing it to how much you would spend for the same number of conversions using other channels.

The important thing is that you have some idea of the value of each individual conversion.

How Much Are You Investing?

The final piece of the equation is the amount of money you are investing. In case you are hiring an outside agency or expert to do this for you, your investment will be represented by the fee you are paying them.

However, if you are doing it yourself or if you have an in-house social media marketing team, figuring out the costs of your investment can be somewhat more complex.
In such a case, you will need to figure out the work hours that were spent on that particular campaign, the value of those hours, any tools that you purchased to get the work done and so on.

In the end, you should have a figure that you can use to finalize your ROI calculation.

The Calculation

Now that we have all the elements, it is time to work out the calculation. In short, it comes down to this very simple formula:

ROI = Total Value – Costs x 100
____________________
Costs

The number you will get will represent the ROI in percentages, so you will get figures like 17% or -25% (which is not good).

This way, you will be able to decide whether a campaign is working, what kind of long-term results you can expect and whether you will want to change anything.

In the end, it all comes down to figures. Of course, there are always more esoteric and less-obvious benefits that a social media campaign can produce for a company, but if you want cold, hard numbers, this is pretty much it.

Facebook News Feed Update 2018: Survival of the Fittest?

Facebook News Feed Update 2018: Survival of the Fittest?

I absolutely love the new Facebook news feed update while a lot of marketers, advertisers, and business owners are all but skittish about it.

I know that with updates like these, Google and Facebook will make this world a better place.

Unscrupulous marketers and desperate entrepreneurs who just want to sell low value stuff have ruined the state of marketing for a long time now.

Google has been trying to make things better for a long time — with its constant animal-named updates to the algorithm and now I am happy that a behemoth like Facebook is doing what it can to put some checks and balances in place.

No tricks will work. Manipulation will kill you. Doing anything shady (including running low value businesses) will put you out of the arena sooner than ever.

For that, I am happy.

Businesses and entrepreneurs who do have good businesses, valuable offers, and those who are truly looking to make a difference to their customer base are always rewarded in the long term.

With more than 2.07 billion accounts, Facebook has more social users than any other network.

71% of Facebook’s users login everyday. Although young people find Facebook uncool, they still use it anyway.

For businesses, it gets even better. A study from Curalate found that about 52% of facebook users discovered a new retail product right off their newsfeeds (between 18-34 year olds, that number rises to 78%).

It’s worrying Facebook goes nuts with its announcements, changes to its platform (for individuals or for business owners), and whatever else it does.

In a nutshell, just in case you haven’t heard, this is the new announcement from Facebook:

“… to prioritize posts that spark conversations and meaningful interactions between people”

and

…to “prioritize posts from friends and family over public content.”

As with most announcements from Facebook, those announcements aren’t even concrete or say anything except that facebook wants to make sure that there’s more meaningful engagement, that users stay more connected with friends and family. There’s no clue as to what exactly “public content” really means.

As a marketer and an entrepreneur, it’s a cause for worry. Since we help clients with Facebook ad campaigns, it’s all the more an issue for us.

So what does the new Facebook news feed Update really mean and what should we do as business owners and marketers? Let’s find out:

Your Facebook Page Performance Will Change

Facebook organic reach was on the death bed. Now, it just got buried.

For long, facebook has been rolling out announcements (just as vague as this new one) and nothing really changed for marketers and Facebook advertisers.

In 2014, the news feed was updated to optimize how you share articles and blog posts. According to Facebook,

“The best way to share a link after this update will be to use a link-share, so it looks like the one below. We’ve found that, as compared to sharing links by embedding in status updates, these posts get more engagement (more likes, comments, shares and clicks) and they provide a more visual and compelling experience for people seeing them in their feeds.”

Facebook News Feed Update 2018

I saw that as a welcome update since without this update, Facebook updates on news feed would have looked like this:

Facebook News Feed Update 2018

In 2015, Facebook started punishing overly promotional posts and “direct asks”.
Facebook News Feed Update 2018

“News Feed is already a competitive place – as more people and Pages are posting content, competition to appear in News Feed has increased. All of this means that Pages that post promotional creative should expect their organic distribution to fall significantly over time.”

In 2016, Facebook announced that updates from friends and family will start showing up more frequently and more prominently in your news feed than content from pages or ads.

After each of the above updates, one thing was for sure and we all saw it coming:

Organic reach is as good as dead for your regular Facebook business page updates.

The recent move by Facebook with strict branding guidelines that require to tag the other brand you’d mention in your updates is another nail in the coffin.

Despite those updates, ad revenues for Facebook continued to rise. Advertisers spent more than ever on Facebook ads.

Facebook ads won’t be affected. Your page performance (organic) will certainly change.

Only how you share your updates, how your updates are shown to your audiences’ news feeds will change and these changes will continue to come in.

Baits Won’t Work

Jon loomer also wrote on the impact of Facebook’s news feed update before I did, and he makes several valid points. One of those was the eroding value of using “engagement baits”.

As Jon puts it,

“From the News Feed FYI announcement:

Using ‘engagement-bait’ to goad people into commenting on posts is not a meaningful interaction, and we will continue to demote these posts in News Feed.

In case you forgot, engagement bait was the focus of another news feed update in late 2017.

That means, no vote baiting, reaction baiting, or share baiting…”

Facebook News Feed Update 2018
And no tag baiting and comment baiting too..

Facebook News Feed Update 2018

The point is simple and straightforward: show up on the news feed only when you have something valuable to offer, when you can make a difference, and when you decide to stop manipulative tactics to get links, shares, comments, votes, leads, and sales.

Take mobile seriously

The reason why Facebook made this update was because of the limited real estate on a news feed while users access Facebook on mobile.

Mobile is also where all the action is. More than 90% of all users access Facebook on Mobile. Plus, 86% of Facebook’s ad revenue also comes from mobile.

Mari Smith advoctes using a few tools already available to you on Facebook:

“…Pages and page administrators should:

  • Encourage fans and followers to add their pages to Facebook’s see first feature.
  • Use Facebook Live more often: Facebook said Live videos are totaling six times the interactions of non-Live videos.
  • Use groups more often. Facebook is really building out groups. It’s almost building a new News Feed, a separate Facebook—[are] groups the next Facebook?
  • Local small businesses should take steps to be included in the Facebook Local application.”

Live Videos Work. Just Don’t Abuse

Live videos (not pre-recorded videos) will be favourable content. It leads to high levels of engagement, lots of meaningful conversation, and high levels of interaction.

It worries me sick just writing that line since marketers have the ability to screw up any content format or media. While Facebook will favour live video, there’s this sickening worry that marketers will use Facebook live for doling out crappy content and use “live video” as some sort of a “bait”.

Jon Loomer almost makes a plea:

“Facebook does really seem to be encouraging us to use live video. But don’t use live video for everything. Don’t abuse it. I don’t need a live video five times per day from you.”

But knowing marketers and business owners, there’ll be another update later this year or the next: an update to live videos.

Give what Facebook wants

If you want to survive as a Facebook advertiser, Facebook content manager, social media manager, or if you are using Facebook as a channel for marketing or advertising, one thing is clear: give Facebook what it wants or just get out of the way.

Facebook wants to do justice to the massive community it has built thus far. At its core, it’s about people staying connected with others they care for. It wants to ensure that people stay on the platform for reasons unique to them, but to stay connected, engage, talk, chat, learn, and then connect some more.

Although marketers, advertisers, entrepreneurs, and facebook itself benefit from advertising on Facebook, it isn’t welcome for users. For facebook, it’s a delicate balancing act.

They’ll do what they can to do the balancing act.

The question is this: What are you going to do? How will your Facebook advertising change after this? Tell me about it.

How to Milk Social Media For All It’s Worth

How to Milk Social Media For All It’s Worth

I don’t need to tell you how important social media is for your business — there’s just way too much data out there to convince you and I don’t have to repeat myself.

But sadly, entrepreneurs don’t really use social media to its real potential. Facebook becomes the “idle joe’s channel”. Twitter becomes a way to quickly parse through some interesting content (whatever tickles you) or it also becomes a way to express your opinions on celebs or a chance for you to jump at trending news.

Meanwhile, LinkedIn is as passive as television is — you keep yourself abreast of who gets promoted where or what some of your professional contacts are up to.

Agreed that that’s how social media evolved, but there’s just so much more social media is capable of.

Here are a few important ways to use social media to help grow your business or provide some value to you:

Use social to bring in relevant traffic

 

You know this already, but it’s important. So, we’ll let it sink in. Use a combination of all your social accounts — putting up the kind of format that each network demands (meaning that images do well on Pinterest and Instagram; your blog posts get traction on Twitter, LinkedIn, and Facebook) — to get some traffic back to your own website.

When a few members of your social networks click on those posts or other content you share, they come back to visit you.

Plus, you can also use tools like Snip.ly to get traffic to specific calls to action (using which you can send traffic to either pages of your website, landing pages with offers, or wherever you please).

Your social media accounts can be at work 24 x 7, with timed and regular updates going out throughout the day (hint: use Buffer or Hootsuite).

Small talk is profitable

 

All of that content on Social media isn’t meant to be consumed (like you’d with a newspaper or a magazine). You are supposed to consume content, yes. But you also supposed to dig a little deeper while casting the net ever so wide to find out who those real people are behind all the content.

Mentions, interactions, small talk, conversations that flow back and forth, acquaintances, friendships, and professional relationships — these bring value to your social presence (apart from the obvious traffic, which is again people).

Maintain those micro-interactions, acquaintances, friendships, and whatever happens on your social networks. This is your new-age ability to get as personal as you can get with a global network of existing customers, potential customers, evangelists, investors, vendors, and even future hires.

Influence. One Update at a time

 

Most followers and fans on your social networks are passive — meaning that they just sit there and let your content stream through their feeds. While you might have liked it if your social following was more active, but then, you ask for a lot.

Your social following has low attention span. This doesn’t mean “no attention” at all.

Social followers and fans might be passive (or active), but they are listening. They are tuned in. They see their tweets, log into LinkedIn, drift on Pinterest, and scroll through their Instagram feeds. Of course, they check their Facebook accounts too.

As they listen and while they stay tuned in, you have your chance to influence them. As a business or a brand, you are an influencer. You are supposed to be good at what you do, and you’ll do great when you are voice that your social following wants to hear when it comes to the topic that your business relates to.

See how each of these companies (each in a different industry) influence their respective social following with content, authority, and love.

Real-time networking: Go deep & wide

 

While you are on social media, don’t lose the opportunity of getting to know people. Go out there and click on those who follow you, talk to you, share your content, and mention you. Find out who they really are by clicking on their social handles and getting to really know them.

Handles are fine, but what are their names?

What’s their business? What do they do? What are they good at?

What do they write about? Why do they write about what they write about?

What kind of things are “they” passionate about? What tickles them?

 

Find out as much information as you possibly can, and then get in touch with them — not for a crappy link. Not because you want something from them, and certainly not because you want them to buy from you.
Do it because the world needs to listen to you, because you mean well for them, and because you care.

Social media isn’t the newspaper; it’s not a magazine. It’s an opportunity for you to connect.

The question is: are you connecting enough? Are you giving the world a tickle?

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