Depending on your Facebook business page for your social media strategy is like depending on the school bully to let you into the lunchroom. Things might turn out okay, or you might get punched in the face and end up hungry on the curb with the other kids who didn’t give him a dollar.
But wait — Facebook is HUGE! You have to depend on your Facebook business page in today’s world, right?
Yes and no.
Facebook is massive. Your members/clients are there. It can be fantastic for your business. But it’s not going to be fantastic if you try to play today’s game by the rules everybody else is using and that Facebook keeps changing.
Use your business FB page, certainly. Use paid FB ads if you want to, and track their effectiveness. Some businesses get great returns from this strategy, particularly dark posts. If you find that you’re getting your money’s worth and they’re driving people to your business, great. Keep doing that.
But, in the meantime, try something else as well: make yourself an expert. And do it through your personal FB page.
“What? How? My personal page is where I post photos of my dog and my kids and I rant about politics until people tell me to shut up or they unfriend me.”
That’s cool. You can stick with that, and use your personal page that way. Or maybe it’s time to change, to blend your worlds, and to take advantage of the page that can get you into (and keep you in) the stream of your audience.
In the training world, there is often talk about how a gym trainer or affiliate owner is a friend/mentor to their members/clients. So be a mentor on social media. Post articles of relevance on your personal page, under your name: stuff that you find interesting and which your clients will find interesting. Put fewer photos of your kids, fewer photos of your dog, and squash many of the political posts. People are probably sick of that stuff anyhow, they’re just too polite to tell you.
And do this:
1.) Enable “followers” on your page. Learn how to do that here. That way, you don’t have to grant every friend request. Let your people know to follow you. Facebook explains more about followers here.
2.) Create a private Facebook group for your members, if you have not already. There are pros and cons to this strategy, but if you run it well, it’s a fantastic resource where your members can congregate online, share photos, and encourage each other. If you run it poorly, it’s a disaster. (More in the future on tips for how to do this well.)
3.) Link your blog posts on your personal page. (You’re updating your blog, right? Tell me you are! If not, get started. You own that puppy, so use it.) Link whatever you would link on your business page. Sure, some of your high school buddies and/or your relatives might not be interested, but they’ll get over it.
4.) Engage people on your personal page. There’s an art to this, but those likes and comments are important to the FB algorithm and they’re going to ensure your stuff keeps showing up in the feed. (More on the art of engagement in future posts and/or an e-book from me. I’m just getting warmed up!)
Is this strategy for everyone? No. Not at all. But for those who are willing to merge their personal and professional lives, this strategy means you can get your business information to your members without having to adjust to the whims of Facebook. Does this mean you might have to stop posting those photos from drunken nights at the bar? Maybe. But you should be putting your phone in your pocket once your elbow starts bending anyhow, if you’re trying to build a professional reputation. More on that in a future post as well.
In the meantime, start thinking about your social media presence. Start thinking about how you personally present on social media, as well as how your business presents. People that adapt can thrive. Businesses that adapt can thrive. But you need to be smarter than ever. So start by making yourself an expert.