Focus: To learn how to use Facebook as a successful platform to build your audience and eventually turn the likes into leads.
What You'll Learn In this lesson plan you’re going to learn about the leading ways to attract, engage and inspire new clients and customers using the Internet’s hottest social platform – Facebook!
Why is This Important? The purpose of this lesson is to equip you with a number of tactics and strategies that will help you to use your time efficiently and effectively on Facebook.
There are so many tools and so many options when it comes to marketing on Facebook that you could easily go off in several directions without actually achieving what you set out to do, which is hopefully to grow your personal trainer business and income.
At the end of this EP you’ll have a clear idea of exactly what you can implement to start building your business right away.
We’ll be covering a lot of material, so we recommend that you clear away all distractions and try to avoid texting or checking email during your learning session. We don’t want you to miss a thing! Make sure you are comfortable, and perhaps get yourself a drink before we begin.
You’re here to learn how to make one of the world’s greatest marketing machines work for your business. This is an exciting decision and one that could make all the difference in the way you interact with clients and customers going forward. Not only will you have new ways to promote your company but your target market will have new ways to interact and engage with you and your company brand.
Step 1 - Start To Create a Plan
You’ll need to always keep in the forefront of your mind that your business isn’t Facebook. Your business is to increase sales. When you’re on Facebook it can be easy to become distracted as mentioned previously. One way to deal with this and to ensure you do what you set out to do, is to have a plan.
The first step of your plan is to identify your objectives. Is to increase sales? Is it to promote a particular product or event? Is it to build brand loyalty and awareness? Your objectives in any given plan may be one or two of these things or all. The decision is yours to make and that depends on the plan.
Generally you’ll want to do the following to create your plan:
Identify the purpose of your Facebook campaign (e.g., increase sales) This can be anything from brand awareness to increasing sales. There are a million and one reasons to start a Facebook campaign and each one comes with its respective plan.
Identify your target audience This will help you to determine which groups you might want to join to start networking with potential customers or clients and it will also help you to answer questions about demographics and target markets when developing a Facebook advertisement campaign (something I highly recommend).
Determine the strategies you will use to reach your target audience to promote your product or service. Following are some examples:
- Create a monthly editorial calendar of daily posts on a particular topic, designed to generate comments and discussion that ultimately reinforce the need for your product or service. - Launch a Facebook advertising campaign that will help to promote your product/service to a wide segment of your target market. - Launch a YouTube video contest on your business page – promote prizes and generate excitement for the contest. - Use your Facebook page to build a list separate from Facebook – offer a free gift as an incentive to encourage visitors to share with you their name and email address.
Determine how you measure the success of each strategy and then MEASURE. Use many of the analytical tools provided by Facebook (we’ll discuss these tools later in the workbook). If things aren’t working after a decent interval of time, adjust as needed.
At the conclusion of your campaign or promotional effort, examine how successful your overall initiative was at increasing your sales.
If you succeeded then repeat! If not, look at where you could have changed strategies, then adjust and start again.
Step 2 - How To Get More Likes
Seeing hundreds and thousands of “Likes” on a Facebook Page provides the “social proof” that this place is a happening place! The product, service or idea being marketed is something that a lot of people relate to and, well, like! So why wouldn’t you want to join the party as well? That’s the kind of reasoning that has made the Facebook Page “Likes” system a really successful model.
So what do you need to do to get more likes? Common sense would say provide the content your target market want and do so frequently and consistently. That is definitely part of the equation but if you’re on a timeline to raise awareness and create excitement and support for your business, you likely want to kick-start your Page with strategy that will attract attention and fans.
According to a poll published by Econsultancy, the number one reason people decide to like a Facebook Page is that they received a reminder by the Facebook Page Administrator about a promotion or special offer. We’ll talk more about promotions and contests in the next section but let’s look at a few more ways to generate “Likes” for your Facebook Page:
Purchase ads that can promote your page beyond your immediate network and a make sure when you launch your Facebook ad campaign that you are publishing interesting and valuable content on a regular basis. You wouldn’t want to pay for the traffic and have people leave before liking because they found valuable to read.
If you’re a local business – make sure your page is set up as a Facebook “Place” this means that customers can check in at each location. When using a smart phone or tablet the user is immediately presented with a Like button which can help to generate additional “Likes.”
Generally speaking to get more likes you really need to understand what your target wants and provide that to them in the most convenient way possible. Consider a tip of the day and provide that tip at the same time each day.
Perhaps you can create a calendar where you focus on some topic or them each day and invite your audience to join in the discussion. Again your choices of themes and topics will reflect the interests of your audience. As you fulfill their needs you’ll increase your chances of more “likes” from visitors and more referrals from those visitors who have become loyal fans!
Step 3: Run A Contest
If increasing the number of “Likes” on your page and generating engagement are top priorities for you, consider offering a contest! As stated earlier research shows that the number one reason users decide to like a page is because of a promoted offer.
If you run a personal trainer service you might offer one free consultation to the winner of your contest or sweepstake.
To be clear, a contest involves voting on a winner based on submissions that are guided by certain criteria whereas as a sweepstake requires very little to enter, there is no judging of entries and the winner is chosen at random.
Determine your Objectives: before you decide on holding a contest or sweepstake determine what it is you want to achieve.
If your goal is purely to get more “Likes” you might consider a low threshold sweepstake. It’s easy to enter a sweepstake and sometimes entrants believe the least they could do is click “Like” to acknowledge their appreciation for the “opportunity” to be a winner.
Now if your goal is to increase engagement on your Facebook Page you might prefer to host a contest where you review the entries and choose the winners or better yet where the community reviews the entries and collectively votes on a winner.
This is particular effective where entries require entrants to write a statement about some topic your community is interested in. Or you might require entrants to submit fun pictures that reflect shared interests in your group.
Whatever the submission requirements, contests can help to increase likes and engagement, though the number of entries may be significantly less than a sweepstake because of the work involved in preparing the submission.
Whatever your choice you’ll need to ensure that your contest or sweepstake adheres to Facebook guidelines (terms and conditions for contests and sweepstakes are on the Facebook website).
One of the challenges with hosting promotions like this is that they can be time consuming and if you are running a business by yourself or with little support, you may be taking yourself away from important management tasks.
One of the things you can do to streamline your work while ensuring that you do not run afoul of Facebook guidelines is to use a third party application designed specifically for contests and sweepstakes.
Some companies that are repeatedly recommended precisely because of their familiarity with Facebook guidelines is http://www.woobox.com.
I like talking about the guidelines, because Facebook can be ruthless when they want too and take away your account if they think you have broken rules. Big Neg, if this happens for your Marketing strategy....so stick to the rules.
Step 4: How Do I Build Interaction?
We talked earlier about achieving immediate goals like increasing likes on a page through big impact events like contests and sweepstakes. But if your goal is to increase likes you’ll need to do more than attract temporary in your page – you’ll need to develop a loyal fan base that will begin to regard you/your brand as a leading authority in your section of the marketplace.
To achieve that, you’ll need to support strategic and authentic interaction. As I’ve mentioned before, creating an editorial calendar that supports your marketing strategy (special events, promotions, new product launches, etc.) can generate enormous interest in your audience if you are consistent in providing high value information, products and services.
Question and Answer Sessions:
Consider hosting weekly Q & A sessions where you make yourself and other informed members of your community available to answer questions. Plan ahead to have some of your community members ready with questions that they can ask you during a 60-minute time slot in the evening to accommodate people who would like to participate after returning home from work.
Post Daily Tips:
Make a commitment to post daily tips at a certain time each day. Ensure the tips are brief but useful and relevant for the kind of customers/clients that you serve. Useful tips may encourage questions and sharing on other pages (we’ll discuss shareable content in a few minutes).
Share pictures of you/your brand in the community:
Are you meeting with a client that isn’t camera shy? With your client’s permission post a picture of you in action providing the service that you promote on your page? Or perhaps you’re speaking at conference – make sure you post many pictures from the event. Being a speaker at a major event makes you a celebrity to your audience.
Don’t overlook the opportunity to share and promote your involvement in high profile events. If you produce a product, I hope you are sharing images of that product whenever appropriate. Your audience likes and needs to see what it is you are promoting – this will help to advance your sales.
Share Experiences – good and bad:
Now, you don’t have to share your dirty laundry, but if you have a work related case study that involved overcoming some significant challenges, consider sharing the experience in a concise post on your page or make it a blog post and share the link on your page. A more personal sharing of experiences helps to bring you closer to your audience and reinforces your commitment to being authentic and “real.”
Make it about the community not just your business: Ask questions and solicit comments that help the community to learn more about their peers.
Step 5: Create Sharable Content
One of the really convenient and wonderful things about Facebook is that it’s a platform that makes it easy to share content that you consider valuable whether the content is yours or someone else’s.
When you share one of your pages or posts on someone else’s page you immediately make that page or post visible to your friends and “their” friends. This is a great way to reach new networks of influence quickly.
You have a few options to share a page or a post on a page: you can share it on your own timeline, on a friend’s timeline, in a group and on another page (if you administer other pages).
Note: Remember sharing etiquette. Don't spam someone page without asking first and do it every now and then and share something valuable, not related to you selling your brand! Everyone hates the shark seller who invaded mass local and friends pages with their events and products.
Step 6: Go Make Some Video
Video marketing is so popular now that any company that wants to be competitive today has to seriously consider including video in their marketing mix.
Here are the numbers to support this assertion:
YouTube (the free video sharing platform) is now the second largest search engine with 3 billion searches per month and receives more than 4 billion video views each day
61% of business to business marketers use YouTube to deliver content
Almost 100% of Internet users in the U.S. viewed some type of video content in 2012 and over 150 million watch each DAY.
The facts are clear – your audience is watching video and if you can’t provide some kind of engaging video in your Facebook marketing strategy you risk losing to the competitor who is sharing this kind of content.
Businesses have caught on as recent statistics reports that Facebook is the 2nd largest referral source for video. When you consider that people spend an awful lot of their time on Facebook it’s really not surprising Facebook is a leading source for video referral.
So what does this mean for you? It means you need to support the content you share on your Facebook business page with videos that will engage, educate and whenever possible entertain your audience. Based on the statistics, if you offer the information your market wants in a video format they’ll stay on your page and likely come back for more!
Now the question is should you upload your videos to YouTube and embed or link to the YouTube videos from your Facebook page OR should you upload your product or service videos directly to Facebook. The experts claim that uploading directly to Facebook has far greater benefits and they include:
People who are not fans of your page can view the video and click “Like” to indicate their preference for the video but in actuality they also become one of your fans. Great tip right there!!
People can easily share Facebook videos (whereas with YouTube videos you can only refer others to the link).
You or your audience can actually tag videos uploaded to Facebook with their own keywords.
Facebook can support a wider variety of video formats and videos that are much longer that the average cap for YouTube videos (15-minutes).
You may be wondering about the kind of content you can feature given your particular type of business. There are many options that include:
A video of you talking about some experience in your business that relates to customer service, or a new product launch, etc.
If you’re a designer, or trainer etc., you might show a video of a webinar you delivered (many webinar services will record these online events and make them available as MP3 video recordings that you can then embed into Facebook or upload to YouTube (or both)
You might deliver a weekly newsletter completely in a video format and include yourself and screen captures that illustrate the points you are making.
Whatever you choose to feature on video, in the words of Nike... just DO IT as the more you get acquainted with how some of the more technical aspects of this work are done the quicker you’ll become more proficient at it.
However, if it is taking too long for you to create and upload videos consider outsourcing and bringing in professionals who can produce what you need. Remember you are doing this to increase your business so outsourcing some work may actually make more sense than doing it yourself and using up your valuable time on a task you should not be mastering.
Step 7: Take Photos Of Things!
Just like videos, photos help to make the content on your page more engaging.
Photos provide an added dimension to posts that may include copy that isn’t very engaging but that with a photo completely comes alive.
Great Tip Alert: One of the more innovative ways to use photos is as an ad for your business. How you can achieve this is by uploading an image from your promotional collection and in the description section for the photo include your URL and ensure that it is hyperlinked.
Step 8 - Turning Your Likes To Leads
If you’re still wondering where the payoff is for all this engagement ask yourself this question:
Would you be more inclined to buy a product based on a print advertisement that highlighted the benefits you wanted from that item or based on an actual conversation on Facebook that you had with a representative of the company producing the product?
Because we live in increasingly cynical times traditional advertising doesn’t have the power and influence it once had. We no longer trust “marketing messages.” We want authentic responses from real people. For this reason you’d likely be more inclined to purchase after “engaging” a real person – someone who could answer your questions.
You’d also be encouraged to purchase only after reading comments made by others on the company’s Facebook page about the product.
With information more accessible to more people than ever before, consumers aren’t waiting for companies to educate them on products – consumers are doing the research themselves and they are sharing that information with each other on networks like Facebook.
What this means for businesses is that you have to be involved in these discussions, but doesn’t mean you’ve lost all control. You can actually provide a place for discussion through your own Facebook page. By providing regular updates that feature information your target market can use, you become the “host” for a dialogue that can support customer interest and attention to your product or service.
You might create an editorial calendar on topics that ultimately demonstrate how valuable your product is to your target market and then post topics according to that calendar. For example let’s say you produce nutritional programs. You might start a discussion on the best strategies for fat loss (sorry, very generic!).
As your Facebook followers respond with ideas you too can participate and when appropriate mention any of your products that might complement the games mentioned. Consider how much better your suggestion would be received within the context of a discussion about nutritional programming ideas versus a commercially focused status update that simply promoted your site.
This is what engagement is all about and why if you use Facebook effectively you have the potential of increasing sales at a tiny fraction of what it would have cost you to advertise and market in the traditional way.
Step 9: Understand Your Analytics
One of the most important steps you can take in executing your Facebook marketing strategy is assessing and measuring your success at achieving objectives you have set for each strategy.
For example if you decide to hold a contest for the purpose of increasing the size of your community with followers from the East Coast, you can get that information from Facebook analytics. The service is actually called Facebook Insight.
You can view your Facebook page insights by clicking on the graph that is viewable on your business page. Along the graph lines you’ll see small nodules and when you hover your mouse over any one of the nodules you’ll see the date of the post and the level of engagement it received.
Information you can view in this area includes:
The number of unique people who friends of people who liked your page (Friends of Fans)
The number of unique people who created a story about your page (People Talking About This)
Gender, age and visitors’ city and country of origin
Make sure you record your key measurement indicators before you launch any promotional efforts. You’ll need this data as a baseline to compare changes in statistics after your campaign or promotion.
You may find that your contest tripled the number of women who visit your website. What can you learn from that? If you tracked conversions before and again after your promotion how did the increase in women affect your rate of conversions (sales)?
By answering these questions you’ll be able to determine more clearly what motivates your market, and how best to engage them to support your business goals.
Return On Investment (ROI)
Calculating the return on investment in social media is still not quite a science. What we want to clarify is exactly which Facebook marketing activities and investments lead to increases in sales and by what percentage? These direct connections are still difficult to trace, instead the kinds of questions we might ask include:
How much traffic was generated to the page and has that increased brand awareness throughout our section of the marketplace?
Has the activity on Facebook increased website traffic and can we attribute growth on the business website (more traffic, higher rates of conversion) to the efforts directed to Facebook marketing?
How many sales can be linked directly to a sales page on the Facebook business page (created using a custom app)
How much “influence” did you gain as a result of your marketing activities? Influence essentially refers to how much your company is referenced in conversations on Facebook.
If a video you’ve uploaded featuring an overjoyed client whose just viewed the website you’ve created is linked to no a page with 25,000 fans and for that reason the video of your exuberant client goes viral, you’ll now have a level influenced gained directly through your video marketing efforts on Facebook. Influence like that can boost traffic which will inevitably increase sales.
In that case you could likely make strong connection between your marketing efforts, your viral video and increased earnings to conclude a certain and measureable amount ROI. Make sense? It will once you get going.
Frequently Asked Questions
WHY IS FACEBOOK SO IMPORTANT? It is on of the largest social networking platforms out there and pretty much most social savvy people use it. Not only that Facebook has made it affordable to grow your business through marketing and adverts on it's platform. You don't have to spend thousands to make millions in social market!
WHAT ARE THE WAYS I CAN ENGAGE WITH MY AUDIENCE ON FACEBOOK? You can provide amazing content, that people will want to commnet on, like or the golden ticket share! You can choose to use adverts, images, videos and plain text to engage with your audience, but a mixed bag is best!
WHY IS FACEBOOK VIDEO SO IMPORTANT? Facebook ahs an Alerrithem, You have heard of that phrase not doubt. It is the magic formula Facebook uses to asses who see's whta on your timelines. It has hundreds of markers it favors like Google, but some of them are how long some stays on your page, clicks your content and watches your video! So if you host a video (which you should) then if someone watches that over scanning your page, Facebook rewards you with making your page more visable on peoples timelines.
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