How Can You Use Facebook For Business?
Facebook has over 1.4 billion active users and research has shown that the average user spends one quarter of their time engaging with the ‘Newsfeed.’ This means in order to use Facebook for business effectively and reach the largest audience for your business page you must actively engage with your fans regularly in order to appear within the ‘Newsfeed.’ The benefit of this is twofold:
- Firstly you reinforce your brand to those who are already fans.
- More importantly though, you are more likely to reach the friends of those who have already ‘liked’ your page!
A report published by the Journal of Advertising Research in 2012 found that Starbucks managed to make 156 social media impressions on Facebook for every 1 page view their official Facebook page received. Every single time someone engages with content on Facebook there is a chance for that content to appear in all of their friends’ ‘Newsfeeds.’ By leveraging the social circles of your fans you can reach a huge audience, far larger than your original fan base! The report also found that if the original fanbase is smaller then the multiplying effects of social sharing are greater. That means this method of social media awareness is effective for a business of any size. ‘Shares’ and ‘Likes’ also made much larger social media impressions than paid Display Ads.
To effectively tap this source of low-cost advertising there are a few hurdles Facebook has for you. It is not enough to simply publish any content on your business’s page. Due to the way the ‘Newsfeed’ algorithm works fans must actively engage with content in order for it to keep appearing in their ‘Newsfeed.’ This means ‘Liking’, commenting or ‘Sharing’ the post. The key to an effective Facebook business page’s reach is to create content that engages your fans on a regular basis whilst not simply spamming them with useless pictures or information.
Why You Should Have an Active Page for Your Business on Facebook
Depending on your business area your Facebook fans and their friends may not accurately represent your normal demographics. You should keep this in mind when thinking about your social media strategy. However the 2012 report found that brand engagement for friends of fans was significantly higher than for the norm.
Social media marketing doesn’t always work the same way as more traditional marketing. This can put some people off investing time and effort into it, but it shouldn’t! When used correctly a Facebook business page can be a great cost-effective way to delight existing customers and also allows you to reach your potential customers too.
Graphs taken from original report ‘The Power of The Like’ published in Volume 52 of The Journal of Advertising Research. The original article is published within an academic journal and as such may be behind a paywall.