With over 500 million registered users, half of whom log in every single day, Facebook is a veritable goldmine for businesses. Especially if you take into account the fact that 50% of consumers consider a brand’s Facebook page more important than their website and that 75% feel more connected with that brand through social media.

You may be saying to yourself, what does all this mean? How can all of these stats be applied to my business? Why did I eat that second burrito last night? The fact is, your prospective customers are all over Facebook and they’re using it as a tool to locate and engage with brands – especially local ones. The trick is leveraging these facts to grow your business. As far as the last question, we can’t help you there. Sorry.

Download our free guide to social media marketing here to learn how to avoid some common mistakes small businesses make.

So, without further ado, grab some Tums and let’s take a look at 7 tips to help you make these Facebook statistics work for your local business with Facebook Marketing.

A like message on enter keyboard for social media concepts.

Start with Your Inner Circle – If you’re just starting out on Facebook, don’t be afraid to ask those in your network to help. Ask everyone you know to like your page – family, friends, colleagues, employees, hairdresser, postal worker….you get the picture. The more traction you get from people in your “circle,” the more likely you’ll start getting more attention from those outside your network.

Be Human – Social media is supposed to be…..social (duh), so make sure you’re leveraging this to its fullest potential. When someone comments, respond. Answer questions, participate in discussions. Post silly pictures or video clips of the shenanigans that go on in your office. Whatever. Just show your audience that there are humans behind your brand. This will go a long way toward endearing them to you.

Be Active – Posting an update once every 6 months isn’t going to do anything in terms of engagement. In fact, with the insanely complicated algorithm that Facebook keeps changing, you may not even reach those who already “like” your page if you’re not active enough. Make social media a part of your everyday routine. Hint: if you can’t be online all the time, use the schedule feature to plan out your posts throughout the day.

Don’t Overdo It – I know, I know, I just said to post regularly. But I’m not a hypocrite, I promise. The reason this is important to mention is because one of the biggest reasons people unlike a brand’s Facebook page is because the company posted way too often. I’m not talking 2-3 times a day. I’m talking a constant barrage of updates that clog up the feed and annoy the crap out of people. Find the not-so-fine-line between engaging your customers and stalking them, and then stay on the right side of that line.

Share Valuable Content – And not just stuff you come up with. Start by understanding who your audience is and what matters most to them. Then, locate content that addresses their needs, wants and problems and share away. The more value you provide to your audience, the more they’ll keep coming back. They’ll also be more likely to share your content, which will increase your reach.

Strike a Balance – There’s a certain art to posting on Facebook. You want to effectively engage your audience and also promote your brand, but not in a way that comes across as pushy or salesy. A good way to achieve this balance is by applying what’s known as the “Rule of Thirds”:

  • 1/3 Editorial Content – Lifestyle, news, education, tips and tricks, etc. that your audience will benefit from
  • 1/3 Fun Content – Cartoons, videos, funny memes, contests, quotes, etc. (note, this type of content tends to be shared the most, so think “viral”)
  • 1/3 Ads/Promos – Company news, information, new product offerings, upcoming sales, etc. to build brand recognition and solidify loyalty

Measure Constantly – Facebook marketing isn’t a “set it and forget it” thing. It’s living, breathing and evolving every day. To maximize your social media activities, make sure you stay on top of the results you’re getting. If something isn’t working, either modify it or nix it altogether. Otherwise you’ll be wasting valuable time and money and getting nothing in return. The good news is, Facebook makes this part pretty easy with their “Insights” feature.

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