Businesses, how do you use your Facebook business pages?
- To keep in touch with customers and update them with the latest news from your property?
- To attract and encourage new customers to visit you?
- For a once-in-a-blue-moon posting, in the hope that people will happen to see it?
If two of the three statements above apply to you, then you need to read on. By the way, did you know…
…That when you post a new update on your Facebook business page, only 3% of your audience will see it?
In other words, if you have 100 fans of your business page, only 3 of these will see your post. If you want people to see that information, YOU NEED TO GIVE FACEBOOK MONEY. It’s how Facebook makes its profit: from businesses listing services on their platform.
The sooner you realise this, the better. There is not a single business on Facebook that has a successful page without spending any money on it.
There is good news, though: Facebook is also currently one of the most cost-effective forms of marketing out there. That said, while Facebook advertising is very cheap, it probably won’t stay that way for long. If you don’t believe me, consider the cost of Google Adwords ten years ago.
If you want to get a head start on 90% of the other hospitality owners in the U.K, follow this advice. I will try to keep it as basic as possible so that everyone can understand. If you get stuck, please message me at email@example.com.
Post a piece of content, such as a photo, news item, or event, every day for a week. If time is tight, spend an hour scheduling your posts ahead. If you need to know about scheduling Facebook content, Google it.
At the end of the week, see which posts have had the most interaction. By interaction, I mean comments, likes, and shares. Pick the most successful post and “boost” it. When you boost a post, you simply pay for it to be promoted on Facebook.
How do you find a boosted post? Have a look at your Facebook wall right now. Scroll down until you see a post that has the word “sponsored” attached to it. That’s a boosted post. It’s a business paying Facebook to get on your wall.
Targeting your Audience
Facebook’s social media professionals are very clever. They know that the average business owner just wants the easy option. When you open Facebook ads, you’ll immediately see the option to promote an item to “people who like your page”.
Now, this is all well and good, but it can also be a great way for you to waste your budget without ever getting in front of the right people.
Think about how many business pages you’ve liked. In my case, the number would be in the 100s. I’ve liked friends’ pages (because I’m a good friend), I’ve liked pages just to enter competitions (with no intention of ever spending money there), and there’s a good chance I’ve liked your page (just to see what you’re posting). I’m afraid that it doesn’t mean that I’m going to stay at your place anytime soon!
The same could be said for all the people who like your page. To make full use of every penny you spend, you need to go a bit deeper. Did you know that there is a Facebook advert manager section? In here, you can create a custom Facebook audience. Here lies the full power of Facebook ads.
You can filter potential customers by:
- Other pages they like
- Relationship status
- Whether they have children or not
- Whether they’ve visited a specific location in the last day, week, month, or year
- If they have visited your website
- If they have liked, commented or shared any post on your page in the last day, week, month, or year (This is an important data point to know!)
- Who they are friends with
- Who their family members are
- How much money they earn
- If they use a mobile phone or a laptop to access Facebook
- If they have their own business
- What towns they like
- Where they were born
- What websites they have visited in the last day/week/month/year
The list is endless. Facebook knows everything about you!
NOTE: Facebook gets this information from any website that includes a Facebook widget, which is 99.9% of all websites.
It’s true that this is scary stuff, but it could end up making you some money! In the Facebook advert manager, you can filter your audience until it best suits your needs.
- Do you want to attract married couples over the age of 50 who like listening to Radio 2 and visiting places in the UK? You can do that.
- How about families who like to escape to the seaside for the weekend and who earn over £40k a year? You can do that.
- Do you want to create an audience who have visited your Facebook page or website and have liked one of your posts in the last week? You can do that too!
This basically means that when you give Facebook your hard-earned cash, you know that you’ve got more of a chance of a return on your investment. There’s no other marketing practice at this time that offers the same kind of detail. As stated at the beginning of this post, Facebook is also still very cheap.
Why would you blindly spend £200 on a listing in a magazine or newspaper and just hope that someone sees it and picks up the phone? You could put the same cash into a Facebook campaign and put your advert exactly where you want it, in front of the person you want to see it.
If you’re reading this and thinking, “I’m pretty sure my customers aren’t on Facebook”, think again. They are. Trust me. If you’re still unsure, try this for a month. On your guest registration form, add a section that asks, “Are you on Facebook?” Have two boxes stating YES or NO. At the end of the month, gather up all the registration forms and trust the majority.
How much should you spend? That depends. You should make sure you know what you want to achieve before you pay for your advert.
I personally like to spend between £3 and £5 for a like on my business page. However, I have a client whose target was a little different. They were targeting local people for their tea rooms and day trippers for their farm. Guests in the B&B were a secondary consideration. Everyone has different goals and budgets. My advice is to TEST, TEST, and then TEST some more.
If this post interested you, then I really recommend you read my related post, How to run the perfect Facebook competition. As always, if you would like to find out more or need help with putting any of this into practice, get in touch with me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Any thoughts on your own Facebook marketing? Comment below!