Firstly, there are no easy shortcuts in this game if you want to create a genuine community, so get ready for the long haul. The main points were going to be talking about are the need for consistency, you need to think about your tone, you need to plan your content accordingly based on your target audience and ultimately you need to think about your goals.
Here’s tips that will help you grow your Facebook audience, regardless of whether you have 10 fans or 10,000:
Add a Facebook Like Button or Box to Your Website / Newsletter
Ok, so first things first, I want you to go to your website and look and see if you have any Call To Actions that encourage visitors to “like your page”. If not then how do you expect to grow your audience? Simply adding a call to action into your website is a really quick and effortless way to grow your audience. If you don’t want to interfere with the design or are a little shy on spending, then try adding a quick pop up?
Secondly, have you included social links in your newsletter, e-mail signature and communications?
You need to motivate people to want to be a part of your audience. Try adding promo codes, discounts or free support (depending on your industry), to make visitors feel like it would be really stupid not to “like” your page.
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Update Your Facebook Page At Peak Times
Although Facebook’s organic reach limits your exposure a tad bit, Facebook has a really helpful tool that will show you the peak times and days of your engagement. It’s called Facebook Insights. Using Facebook Insights you can view what are the peak times for you to post and update on your page to get the best results.
It could be between 6am and 9am on the way to work, or even 9pm to 11pm after dinner. So instead of posting content when you have time or just after you’ve finished creating it, rather create a time based schedule in which you post your content at certain times on certain days. The more people who are currently on Facebook means more views, more engagement and ultimately more likes.
Cross Promote On Your Other Social Media Platforms
With so many social networks to service and continually update, it’s very easy to get stuck in individual silos. Someone who follows you on Instagram might not follow you on Facebook for example.
To help prevent this, its always better to push viewers to your other social media accounts e.g. Twitter, Instagram. Adding links to these and inserting Call To Actions into your website or posts, or even your emails and newsletters. Just to avoid relying on a single third party app.
So don’t forget to introduce your other platforms to your viewers to make all that much easier for them to get in touch with you.
Interact As Your Page
Facebook gives you the ability to like, message and reply as your Page. This is a great way to interact with users and it takes no time at all, it also lets your viewers feel as if they’re being noticed on your page.
Using your Page to reply to messages on your wall or when you leave comments on other pages is also important. This way you are able to build trust with regard to partnerships and generally shows more movement from your side. All factors which help broaden your reach and general engagement.
Surface Quality Facebook Content On Your Site
You’ll see a large number of sites these days having Twitter streams or Instagram feeds built into their site.
So every now and then you see the little blue “like box” on a site, but we hardly ever see a stream of content from their Facebook or Twitter built into their website. Each week as a content piece, start doing a list of the Most Popular posts from your Facebook Page.
You can embed Facebook Posts into your site – so the benefits of this are two fold. Firstly you’re creating content that you already know is successful, and secondly you’re driving awareness and also promoting your Facebook page yet again.
If I go onto a website and see an article titled “Best Tips Of This Week.”, I will be more inclined to return to this site and eventually check them out on Facebook because I know every week they’re going to be posting content like this.
Think of it as a little preview / teaser for your audience.
What Kind Of Content Works And What Doesn’t?
Posting a story, video or image which is uplifting will drive a higher rate of shares, likes and engagement than a story that is negative.
Even today, “liking” a negative story seems strange, that’s not to say you won’t share it if you think more people need to know about it however. But based on interaction alone, people tend to gravitate more to stories that they find inspiring and uplifting.
Stay away from bombarding people with endless quotes however, that’s been way too overkilled.
Over the course of a month you’ll definitely see stories and updates which gained greater attraction than others. One might get 50 like and 10 comments, another 250 likes and 23 comments.
Providing it’s not time specific, you can always repost it a month later under the premise of “flashback friday” for example – where you repost something from that particular day. It’s highly unlikely your entire audience will have seen it based on Facebook’s limited organic reach, plus it’s likely to be just as popular the second time of posting.
Controversy is Key. Try to create posts where you encourage your audience to do more than just like your posts, but rather engage. Look for topics that are debatable and evoke opinions.
In life there are many events happening all the time, whether they are tragic or cause for celebration, not posting or commenting on such events may create the image that you are out of touch with the world. For example, simple posts celebrating Christmas or New Years are a no brainer, but go more in depth such as celebrity news or if gay marriage gets approved.
How Has Your Facebook Community Affected Your Site?
As your Facebook Audience grows, your Mobile Audience will grow hand in hand. This is a great way to create a larger audience as everything in our modern world revolves around our mobile devices.
It’s certainly a challenge and one that requires constant evolution, in terms of the design of your site, the content you provide, your calls-to-action and your capacity to grow and increase revenue.
So how has your Facebook community influenced your site, which of the above methods really stand out for your Facebook Page, and what other methods have you used to successfully grow your Facebook Community?