Facebook is a powerful tool to market your business and brand.
It has tremendous reach, an active user base and loads of tools for businesses to use.
Likely you’re using Facebook for your business already if you’re a reader here. The question is whether you’re using it well! Many businesses continue to make mistakes when using Facebook for marketing. These mistakes are costly and hamper an overall marketing strategy.
Here are 5 mistakes that you need to avoid when using Facebook for marketing.
Mistakes with an Ad Budget
To truly reach the right audience on Facebook, some money must be spent. Many businesses, especially small ones, don’t have unlimited funds and must carefully construct cost-effective, engaging Facebook ads. However, it’s possible to make mistakes in this area that can waste time, money and fail to earn attention.
Facebook determines potential ad reach mainly by budget size. Ad cost must be factored in the size of your target audience and the length of time the ad will run. If the budget is too low, there can be a dramatic reduction in reach. Trying to take a lower budget and stretch it can be wasteful as it will be less likely to have the desired effect.
How to Avoid: When working with a limited budget, make certain the money is being directed toward strategies that are proven to work. First, make use of Facebook’s Power Editor tool. It allows users to specify, in great detail, where they want their ads placed, and it provides information on how well ads do in certain niches. Facebook ads placed in mobile news feeds for example often work better than other potential placements such as the desktop sidebar. As well, if your dollars are limited, limit your ad time length. It’s better to go shorter duration and have more impact than to go long and limited.
Not Engaging Your Audience
Marketing, forming communities and making human connections go hand in hand. In an age of social media, this is, even more, evident. There are a number of ways your business can make the mistake of ignoring this human link including:
Talking “at” your followers. This is simply a turnoff. When your Facebook content is focused all on the brand and not the followers, it isolates followers and makes the page appear less approachable. Because engagement leads to your business being displayed to a wider audience, ignoring audiences is not the way to go.
How To Avoid: Create your posts around people; analyze fans & followers, and make an effort toward humanizing your brand. Move away from a monolog and create a dialogue between followers and the brand. Share relevant viral content or ask questions directly or in polls which will give followers a voice. When a negative comment shows up, don’t ignore it, it can seem as though the brand does not value its customers. Instead, respond with a kind, individualized manner to try to alleviate grievances. This shows that person and all watching that your brand is human and does care.
Understanding the followers on a Facebook page is easier with the Insights tool that Facebook offers. To effectively market to someone, you need to know who is already being reached. With Insights, you can see the posts that are getting the most likes and engagement, active fans, and follower demographics. Learn from these items as you plan new content to share.
Quality content is important to marketing in any media. It’s one of the backbones of your marketing campaigns. Weak content that comes off as a continuous sales pitch or a boring mess of information isn’t going to get much attention, or at least, not for very long. Common marketing mistakes regarding content are:
Lengthy Content – Facebook content that is too long isn’t optimal for reaching customers. Facebook news feeds are often cramped with lots of posts vying for the attention of Facebook users. Lengthy text-only content can turn off those users as they look for content that is easy to scan through quickly. Unless you are getting great engagement already, beware of 500-word posts!
Bland Content – Employing the same type of content repeatedly gets old fast. Because Facebook is a visual medium, not including visuals and video can leave existing text content feeling a bit bare and boring.
How to Avoid: Content that’s relevant, attractive and helpful is the type of content that will be invaluable to your marketing. Optimize your content so that it will be rich with important information in a compact form. And think visual!
Don’t overload your followers. The ideal character count for many Facebook posts will usually be around 150 characters with an upper limit of 250 characters. Integrate multiple content types into your posts. It has been frequently shown that pictures, video, and infographics and other visual content receives more engagement that basic text content.
Violating Facebook Rules
It takes commitment to invest a good amount of time and money into your Facebook page. And over time, you’ll grow and open your business or organization to a wider audience while building the business’s brand. This can work great until Facebook yanks the proverbial plug and hits your page with a violation.
A Facebook violation can get your page penalized or taken down. Often, this a situation that can be avoided. Because Facebook heavily frowns upon certain actions that appear fishy and wants to keep their site friendly for its users, penalties can be harsh and damaging. There are a number of ways your Facebook page can end up in violation.
How to Avoid: The best way to avoid penalties and violations on Facebook is to go over and understand the terms of agreement. Familiarizing yourself will help you to understand how to correctly follow the rules set out by Facebook. In practical terms, think about being social and helpful. If you do those things rather than being pushy and salesy, you’re going to be OK.
The best place to learn is to go to the source (Facebook) and carefully read the guidelines they set. Facebook also has a robust online help center for questions in case something is not understood.
Neglecting Your Facebook Page
Although it seems like a basic rule, it’s not unheard of for businesses to not update their Facebook pages regularly. Many businesses have more than one social media profile. As a result, some pages end up getting neglected. This makes it appear to possible followers that the page has been abandoned, and potential fans will steer clear.
How to Avoid: Set a regular update schedule. When followers learn to expect regular updates, they’re more likely to keep coming back. Take time to fill out all the page’s sections. Make sure the about page is properly filled out and provides relevant information and includes links to the main website or blog.
Know that “regular updates” means a few times a week at minimum if not multiple daily posts.
So there you have a wrap on some more common Facebook mistakes and how to avoid them. Facebook is a great place for businesses to connect with their potential audience. Like anything in business, it simply has to be done planned out and executed well.