Facebook is pretty amazing. If you stop to think about the amount of information you can take in during one session, it’s astounding. It helps people to stay connected to friends (or people that are kind of friends, but they said that one thing that one time and now you just want to laugh at pictures of their weird clothes) and family. In addition, a user can connect with brands that they love in order to receive exclusive offers or to keep up with all the latest that is happening.
The chances are very high that your place of business has a Facebook page and I’m willing to bet my dog, Swayze, on the fact that you’ve seen a decline in your business’s organic reach since the beginning of the year. Seriously (not seriously), if you haven’t seen any kind of decline I’ll send you my dog. The decline has been greater for some than others, but everyone is feeling the pinch. (And being pinched is pretty unpleasant.) Some folks have even decided they will no longer suffer the pinches to their organic reach by Facebook and have closed their accounts (Woah!).
Do I think you should yank your business page off of Facebook? Nope. Social media networks ebb and flow. The fact that Facebook is attempting to get you to buy ads to reach your followers is definitely not going away anytime soon. In fact, it’s bound to happen on other networks as well. It is becoming increasingly common to see promoted posts on Twitter, Instagram, Vine and Pinterest.
It’s understandable that many brands are frustrated with Facebook marketing and have closed their accounts. Many of those larger brands used the site’s ad structure to attract the following they had before January of 2014. Once their reach declined, they realized they were no longer reaching the people they had paid to reach. And Facebook is asking for more money to reach them. You can see the frustration, here.
There are still so many benefits to using the social media giant. In our latest infographic, you’ll see that a whopping 97 percent of all consumers search for local businesses online and 68 percent of those check out companies on social networking sites before buying. No interested in buying ads just yet? Here are some things you can do to increase your engagement and, thereby, increase your reach.
1) Be Open
I’m not talking about your business hours, although it is helpful to be in business. What I’m talking about is having more transparency with your followers. Share information about what’s going on behind the scenes or how your company just won an amazing award. Or even that you’ve started developing a new product. Being open with your followers gives them a closer connection to your brand.
2) Share Photos
We have a post up from last week explaining why photos are so important on social media. Check it out!
3) Got Stuff? Do a Giveaway
One shouldn’t underestimate the power of a giveaway. You can either use a third-party app, like Short Stack Lab to build a contest or you can start one right on your timeline. Don’t feel like you’re the right kind of business for a giveaway or your business doesn’t really have goods to hand out? It can be as simple as a Starbucks gift card. Encourage folks to like and share. People love free.
There is no magic pill for increased Facebook engagement. If there was, I would take as many as I possibly could in a 24-hour period. Engagement is something that builds over time; being consistent and posting items that will get your followers jazzed is a step in the right direction.
If you’re still on the fence about whether or not staying on Facebook is the right decision for your business, check out our infographic below. It’s loaded with stats and tips from some of the social media marketing heavy hitters.