Business

Why Do We Need Facebook?

From headlines to viral videos, or recipes to public-service announcements, Facebook informs, entertains and encourages us to spend. How will Facebook help you?
Photo Credit: Shane Indrebo

Author: Teresa Johnson

If your personal life is all about Facebook, you know news travels in nanoseconds thanks to this behemoth social network. Other social media like Twitter, Instagram, Snapchat and Pinterest still can’t rival Facebook’s return on advertising dollars.

From headlines to viral videos, or recipes to public-service announcements, Facebook informs, entertains and encourages us to spend.

Facebook is also many things to small businesses. It helps them share news, build customer relationships, and be a portal for customer service. Your customers visit Facebook to share fun, interesting news, photos and videos with friends and family. Small businesses that learn what interests their customers will gain solid returns on small advertising budgets.

If all that’s true, why are people saying Facebook is passé?

We don’t know, but they’re wrong.

Take this infographic, for example. According to Social Media Today, rumors of Facebook’s death have been greatly exaggerated. For instance, 86 percent of 18- to 29-year-olds use the country’s largest social network, and it’s grown by 18.6 million users since April 2015. Nearly 75 percent of Facebook users visit daily, which gives advertisers fantastic opportunities to reach prospective customers.

Businesses must ask themselves: Who are you targeting?

Having a Facebook page allows you to see everyone who is reading your content. You can use this to your advantage when you target your audience with your posts. Photo Credit: ATA

If you’re trying to reach baby boomers, you’re in luck. Over 60 percent have a Facebook profile, while a staggering 86 percent of 18- to 29-year-olds use Facebook. But if you’re trying to reach a married 62-year-old male with a high-school diploma; and who loves football, fishing and fly-tying; and lives within 10 miles of Nashville, you’re also in luck.

Facebook has the most targeted advertising capabilities of any social network. It lets you choose the audience you want to reach by targeting characteristics such as age, gender, interests, location, education, life events, marital status and …

Well, you name it, and there’s a Facebook demographic that fits it. Therefore, if you’re not sure how to market your archery business, have a limited advertising budget, and need to get the word out about your bows, arrows and services, Facebook is for you.

More great news? A little money goes far on Facebook.

Give your audience what they need … and more.

Using Facebook as an advertising tool is easy. We recommend “populating” your page with information shortly before you start advertising. After all, advertising a new page is much like advertising a store with empty shelves. By investing a small amount of money, you can reach more customers - and add value to your customer relationships. Photo Credit: ATA

When your business starts using Facebook, you must get the basics right. Choose the correct name for your business, select a profile picture and cover photo that promote your brand and business, and provide all of your profile information – including your location and hours of operation – so customers know what you do and how/when to contact you.

Once that’s done, it’s time to start sharing content – and using Facebook to advertise. We recommend “populating” your page with information shortly before you start advertising. After all, advertising a new page is much like advertising a store with empty shelves.

Your posts must add value for the audience you’re trying to attract. Think videos, photos or links you can share. Does the content inform your customers? Does it entertain? Would it make you stop scrolling to learn more? Ask yourself those questions when deciding what to share on Facebook. Text-only updates usually engage few readers. Likewise, visual “ads” with lots of text superimposed on an image make few people stop scrolling.

Therefore, find photos that spur people to give opinions, answer questions – or watch a video that teaches or informs. How about links to website posts that help customers learn more about archery? All such items give something to your target audience that makes them want more.

Once you’ve established the types of content you want to share, schedule your regular social media postings by following these guidelines. And once your page has plenty of high-quality content, start using Facebook as an advertising tool.

A little money goes far on Facebook.

Facebook's “boost post” function extends your post’s reach; that is, the number of people who see it in their news feed. Boosting can also increase the number of likes, reactions and clicks your posts receive. Photo Credit: ATA

You have a few options for Facebook advertising. First, you can use the “boost post” function, which extends your post’s reach; that is, the number of people who see it in their news feed. Boosting can also increase the number of likes, reactions and clicks your posts receive.

If you’d rather advertise your page to increase visibility, or run advertisements to drive traffic to your business, you can choose many types of ads on Facebook. Videos, photos and slideshow options should catch the eye of prospective customers. You can also choose from different call-to-action items. For example, an advertisement can direct prospects to send messages to your page for more information, or encourage them to call your store.

If you’re new to Facebook advertising, it might seem like a lot to learn, but this guide does a wonderful job explaining how to start. Facebook’s Ad Manager helps you use the strong, flexible, audience-targeting tools we discussed earlier in this article.

Facebook is your business’s best friend in many ways. It helps you recruit new customers, engage your current clientele, and establish your business as a trusted information source. The secret to success? Action. Do the research, make a plan and stay engaged.

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