Facebook dominates social media, and that’s why both B2B and B2C companies must have a strong Facebook presence to overcome competition. An effective Facebook presence strengthens your brand by providing value and/or entertainment to your audience through posts, tabs, and other shared content.
To get the most out of your company’s Facebook account, pay attention to the following:
Your Facebook page is the central hub of your brand. Creating a Facebook page for your company has many benefits; it makes your business discoverable in Facebook search, allows you to connect one-on-one with your followers, helps you reach a wider range of prospective customers and gives you deeper insight into your audience.
L.L. Bean’s corporate Facebook page connects with customers via cool photos, videos, and tips for outdoor adventures. The screenshot below shows how L.L. Bean also dedicates tabs to its “Free Shipping” policy, a “Base Camp” where customers can post photos using specific hashtags, and a “Join the Conversation” tab where you can sign up for L.L. Bean’s mailing list or follow its other social media accounts.
As L.L. Bean’s page demonstrates, your Facebook page is an extension of your business, and Facebook offers many methods of customization to properly represent that business.
In building your brand presence on Facebook, consider the following five tools:
The cover photo backdrops your logo and rests at the top of your company profile page. The cover photo tends to change seasonally or promotionally to reflect relevant company updates and also allows you to creatively express your brand. Because of its large size, cover photos offer brands more real estate to work with, with a photo that can include brand messaging, campaign promotions, product images, and an endless list of options.
One of the best corporate cover photos is this one from Starbucks, which showcases products in-house in a warm, inviting way:
This image stamping the bottom left corner of your cover photo is how Facebook users identify your company. It’s a small thumbnail that is attached to almost any action that you make across the platform. From posting in a group to posting on your own timeline, this image appears next to all of your posts as the HubSpot example illustrates below:
Profile Photo Sizing Information:
- Photo will be cropped to fit a square
- Must be at least 180 x 180 pixels when uploaded
- Image displays on your page at 160 x 160 pixels on computers, 140 x 140 pixels on smartphones, and 50 x 50 pixels on most feature phones
The about section is a tab in the navigation bar that resides under your profile photo and cover photo.
This section includes two elements. The first is your page information, which is your opportunity to share details about your company. This section includes sharing information—like a description, products, and links to other social media properties and your main website. See image below:
The second element (refer to image below) is what Facebook calls “Milestones,” which lets you commemorate and share important events in the history of your brand with your followers, allowing your customers to experience your triumphs right along with you!
Your Facebook page allows you the ability to post updates for your followers. Posting on Facebook is a key way to build followers and fuel your paid advertising efforts.
These posts can be comprised of text, images, links, non-native video (like a YouTube link), native video (a video posted specifically and originally on the Facebook platform), slide decks, and photo albums.
The image below is from the Facebook page for Sugarbush Ski Resort in VT after the first sizeable snowfall of the season. From the Sugarbush example, you can see how the resort is keeping up with its followers in real time with information (a snowstorm) relevant to the resort’s services.
Tabs now sit in two places on your Facebook page, on the left side of your timeline and in the navigation bar under your cover photo. When a user clicks on a tab, specially created landing pages appear. In the example below, these landing pages include “Videos,” “NHL Live Stream,” “Likes,” “NHL Pinterest,” and “NHL Fan Freeze.”
As with the NHL screenshot above, tabs can be used to host a variety of apps that lend to the business. These include running contests, connecting to your other social accounts, hosting an ecommerce storefront, and more.
How you use your tab space should be part of your social strategy and dictated by the goals that you hope to achieve.
Build Your Fan Base
For marketers, building your fan base is a key activity to achieve through social networks. There are a variety of techniques that you can use to build fan followings, and we’ll explore them in this section.
Creating regular posts is an integral part of building and maintaining your Facebook page audience. You want your audience to seek out your posts, and that’s why it’s important that your content is entertaining, engaging, and informative.
Concurrently, it’s important to post the type of content that appeals to your target audience at optimum times.
When to Post
No two days are the same. According to directom.com, you should avoid posting content on Tuesdays. Other days have varied favorable windows.
For example—for Monday postings, you’ll want to post between 11:50AM-12:10PM. Wednesdays are different. The window is a little longer, between 11:30AM-12:30PM.
Interestingly, as the week progresses, the publishing window increases. Thursday, anytime after 3:00PM is a favorable time, and on Friday, the range falls between 3:00-6:00PM.
Weekends tend to be underutilized by many brands, but the secret to weekend success is to publish lighter stuff or upcoming social events.
What to Post
Over the last 18 months, the content that got the most reach, shares, and engagement on Facebook were photos—with a staggering 204.5% more engagement than regular updates via mere text.
But a quick check on your Facebook feed shows a saturation of photos and memes, and as a result, reach and engagement of photos is decreasing.
Instead, the three types of content I expect to perform better in 2016 are:
Lists — Exactly what they sound like (see TripAdvisor example below), lists focus on a particular topic, offer a number of points about the topic, and provide a brief conclusion.
Why-posts —Why-posts typically provide readers with a reason or purpose and provide details that support a focused conclusion.
Videos — Also self-explanatory, videos provide the audience with a dynamic visual of the topic discussed within the article.
Like we mentioned earlier, there is an almost unlimited variety of post types that you can share on Facebook.
Fresh Brothers, founded by real-life brothers Adam, Michael, and Scott Goldberg, is a southern California pizza chain specializing in fresh pizza, salad, and wings.
By announcing discount codes (like the one shown below) to Facebook fans, Fresh Brothers can easily track Facebook referrals and see the success of their social networking strategies.
“We reward our social media users by offering them a weekly special, but we really excel at sharing family stories and history with our fans, as well as employee stories,” says Adam Goldberg. “It’s a great way to connect with our customers, and a great way to demonstrate our personality.”
It’s okay to be personal with your customers! In fact, it’s encouraged. It creates connection and loyalty. Consider the success of many reality TV shows today. Whether or not the shows are actually “real,” many fans feel connected to the people on those shows because they feel like they actually know them. Increase your connection with your followers; let them in.
Pinning to Top
To shine a spotlight on a specific post, Facebook gives Facebook page admins the option to “pin” a post to the top of the page (See Just Eat Real Food example below). Doing this effectively ensures that the post is seen before the other posts on your timeline, even if it is not in chronological order. It can help increase engagement with important posts and content.
For example, if you are launching a large campaign, program, or event, you may want to have your corresponding post pinned to the top of your page.
How to Pin a Post on Facebook:
- Find the Facebook post that you want to pin
- On the top, right-hand corner of the post, click the little down arrow
- From the drop-down menu that appears, select “Pin to Top”
- Refresh the page, and you’ll see the pinned post with a little orange ribbon in its top right corner
- You can unpin the post by clicking that same arrow and selecting “Unpin From Top,” or you can simply pin another post, which will unpin the currently pinned post.
Note: You can only pin posts on a Facebook page (not on personal profiles), and pinned posts on FB only stay up for a week. If you want a post to be pinned for longer than that, you have to manually repin it every 7 days.
Native video—a video posted specifically on Facebook and not a link from a different platform—has become an increasingly popular way for users to express themselves and share moments with their friends on Facebook.
This movement of user preference and engagement with video is not isolated to individual Facebook users and can be leveraged by brands.
Native videos, like the one represented in the Askgaryvee screenshot below, often get higher organic reach than videos that are hosted elsewhere because users automatically view the video as they scroll through their Facebook feed versus having to click to view it on another site.
In 2016, I expect video posts to perform really well on Facebook with the majority of those views happening on mobile.
During Facebook’s Q3 earnings call in November, Mark Zuckerberg shared that Facebook now sees eight billion average video views daily. That’s up from just four billion video views per day in April.
Shared videos are not just posted by big brands. During the Q3 earnings call, Facebook CEO Sheryl Sandberg said that 1.5 million small and medium-sized businesses shared videos in September.
Because native videos start playing in Facebook users’ newsfeeds as they scroll over it, to be successful creating this type of content, you need to grab the attention of users right away. To do this, try these tips:
- Make your video visually interesting enough to be engaging with or without sound.
- Make a statement with your first few frames; you need to get your viewer to stick around.
- Use smart copy. The text that you post with your video will help create interest and curiosity and set the stage for your video for your audience.
Is your business established on Facebook yet? Are you effectively utilizing the social network to work for you? Don’t miss out on Facebook opportunities. Contact us today to increase your sales, reach, and more via the top social network!