Facebook is an entertaining productivity killer used only by teens and young adults, right?
All data points to, nuh-uh!
Such stereotypes largely undermine the massive value of Facebook as a marketing tool. We here at Energy Circle continue to encourage your home performance company to open its arms for a big old Facebook bear hug.
Here's a great example post from one of our Facebook embracing PROs.
The most visited website on the internet, Facebook is an essential tool for Home Performance businesses to reach customers. In the U.S., 93% of adults regularly using the internet have Facebook, and 65% of all Facebook users are 35 or older. These internet users spend three times as many hours on social networks than even email.
Facebook is where your potential customers spend their time. Your company should be there too.
Where else does your target audience spend their days? Google. When a potential customer is Googling your company, a Facebook Page with good SEO is right up there with the website in search results. This is extremely powerful for several reasons. First, it helps ensure that when your company is Googled you have another opportunity to represent. Second, when the first few local search result options are monopolized by your company's website and Facebook Page, it disuades the Googler from clicking on a competitor's page. Third, Social Capital. Internet users (aka, your customers) look to social media to guage the validity of your company. If you are not putting your best face forward online, you are missing out on a good first impression.
So, once you have your Facebook Page going, how do you manage it?
Every small business will staff their social media differently. Common practice is to hand it over to an employee who likes using it and is comfortable with the medium. Sometimes that's the CEO, and sometimes that's the Intern, and sometimes it's the guys and gals on the road with their smart phones. Ownership of the Page should remain with the company, but you can create as many Page Administrators as you'd like. Find someone who is enthusiastic about it. Ask them to spend 8 hours or so a week posting, commenting, and engaging. Show a little personality. You will see growth.
Growing your Facebook fan base isn't difficult, but it does require watering.
First, invite your personal Facebook friends to Like your Page. Just like in non-cyber life, your company's best advocates are your personal friends and family.
Promote your Page on your website, blog posts, print advertising, on your company trucks, etc. This is key. All it takes is the Facebook logo to let potential customers know to look for you there.
Ask satisfied customers for Facebook Recommendations—they're free and easy and live right on your Page for all to see. When sending follow up emails to clients, include a link to your Facebook Page with a prompt, " We'd love to see your face on our Facebook Page. Please consider writing us a Recommendation."
Keep your content original and fresh—try to post a few times per week. Post good, original content and photos. Photos generate more Likes and Shares than any other sort of Facebook post, and they will help grow your Page Likes. Show people your work from the road and share success stories with photos. Gnarly crawl spaces and blower doors in action. It's a cool job...share it!
Follow and "Like" others in the Industry. Pay attention to what they are posting and Share when something catches your eye. See an article that is pertinent to our industry or a stellar Blog post on EnergyCircle's Facebook Page, for example? Share it! The more you share other Facebook Page's content, the more they are likely to share yours, and the more you will grow your Likes.
Look into Facebook ads and promoted posts. You can set up ads within whatever budget you have to work with, and target by age, location, interests, and connections. Promoted posts are a great place to start. For a small investment you can ensure that your content is seen by more people, so make sure it's a post that solidly represents what you do as a company. Deals and discount announcements are great content for promoted posts, as are photos from the road.
Have fun! Social media is inherently social. Show some personality and engage with your community.
Oh, and post pictures of dogs now and then. People LOVE that.