Top 10 Ways to Grow a Small Business Through Facebook
The ongoing COVID-19 pandemic has inevitably transformed how business is done across the globe.
A recent Goldman Sachs report revealed that over 96% of small business owners reported being impacted by the crisis. In addition, over 51% admitted that they would be forced to close their business within 0–3 months.
As the ongoing lockdown demands a shift toward digitalization, many local offline businesses are struggling to undertake this massive transformation. However, it may be their only way to maintain (and boost) metrics, audience engagement, and audience retention.
According to Forbes, the COVID-19 pandemic has increased internet use by 70%.
Brands that have successfully leveraged the power of digital marketing have managed to keep their business afloat and increase revenue sales.
While digital marketing comprises an eclectic blend of PPC marketing, reputation management, web design and development, and content production, there’s one key player that stands out for its unparalleled performance.
Research indicates that coronavirus has pushed Facebook usage through the roof. People are spending 50% more time on the popular social media application, thereby interacting with more digital marketing content and fueling conversion rates for online businesses.
A recent survey conducted in March revealed that over 63% of Americans stated that they were expecting to use Facebook more during the pandemic to stay informed about recent developments. Not only has that estimate increased across the globe, but it has also helped a lot of small businesses gain greater visibility and boost their business.
If your business has been struggling to weather the COVID-19 storm, we’ve rounded up ten powerful ways to leverage Facebook for greater audience reach, revenue sales, and brand identity during the ongoing crisis.
1. Create a Separate Business Page
Facebook helps businesses grow.
Research indicates that there are currently over 65 million active small business pages on Facebook. With the number expected to increase as the COVID-19 pandemic continues, creating a separate Facebook business page is a surefire way to boost audience engagement and retention.
The powerful tool helps small businesses centralize their audience, thereby strengthening brand identity and allowing you to reach a vast expanse of potential customers successfully. Instead of using conventional marketing strategies, marketing your target audience through a strong Facebook page will lower your marketing expenses. This is extremely beneficial for up-and-coming startups and small businesses that are actively on the lookout for cost-effective marketing strategies.
Creating and running a Facebook business page is free, so you don’t have to worry about investing in unpredictable marketing sources that may not deliver the expected results.
A Facebook business page is also extremely effective in boosting SEO, increasing website traffic, and increasing customer retention.
Target your intended audience based on key demographics, interests, and location to enhance localized engagement further.
These strategies will collectively help you establish a targeted social media presence and solid reputation.
As you continue to use the platform, you’ll also establish a strong sense of competitor strategies. As you analyze their performance, marketing tactics, content quality, and reputation management practices, you’ll be able to tweak and polish your branding strategy accordingly.
We recommend examining the Facebook business presence of small businesses and established corporations that fall within the same industry.
This will help you incorporate a unique and effective mesh of “glocal” (global and local) strategies that resonate with the intended audience.
2. Post Empathetic and Crisis-Friendly Content That Resonates With Your Audience
While the ongoing lockdown has necessitated the creation of a strong Facebook business page, many small businesses are struggling to use the platform in an empathetic and crisis-friendly manner.
While you may feel compelled to leverage the application by solely marketing your products/services, you may want to reevaluate your strategy.
The sensitive crisis demands a gradual departure from unadulterated branding. Instead, prioritize support and care to make your audience feel comforted during a time of chaos and uncertainty.
Moving toward a humanized marketing approach—in contradistinction to an automatized marketing approach—will strengthen your brand identity.
Slack’s genuine, heartfelt, and altruistic check-ins are a great example of prioritizing audience health (physical, mental, and emotional) and wellness before promoting products/services:
We also love Foreo’s empathetic marketing approach that prioritizes care and follows it up with timely and appropriate product recommendations:
Building an understanding and comforting Facebook presence will ultimately help you establish a strong brand identity and generate more sales.
We also recommend posting thoughtful and crisis-sensitive blogs, articles, press releases, guest posts, infographics, and videos to crystallize brand visibility and attract new audiences.
For more strategies on empathetic, crisis-friendly marketing practices, be sure to check out our blog 8 Digital Marketing Tips For Small Businesses Struggling To Navigate COVID-19.
3. Closely Monitor Insights to Improve Your Strategy Accordingly
One of the most beneficial features of Facebook marketing is the ability it gives you to monitor insights closely.
As Facebook use continues to increase, small businesses are increasingly leveraging Audience Insights to determine areas of improvement and connect with potential customers who may have been overlooked through conventional marketing strategies.
Access page summary data and scrutinize metrics to develop an understanding of what works and what doesn’t. As you browse through the posts with the highest organic reach and determine the most popular content style on your page, you’ll be able to realign your strategy without breaking a sweat successfully.
This tactic is essential for small business owners with a limited understanding of digital metrics and KPIs. The easy-to-use dashboard allows quick, accurate, and digestible statistics that’ll help you steer your business to success.
We also recommend benefiting from Facebook Analytics to visualize and optimize the customer experience.
4. Leverage Facebook Videos for Improved Audience Engagement and Retention
While the lockdown has given people more free time than before, the average human attention span has remained constant. According to Time, humans have an average attention span of 8 seconds—1 second less than that of a goldfish!
While image and text-based marketing content is effective, video content is twice as powerful. Research indicates that videos generate 1,200% more shares than images and text combined. Moreover, Facebook videos enjoy over 8 million views per day!
The way to use videos to engage an audience is by creating videos that:
- Serve to inspire your viewers. This can be in the form of telling a story, sharing an inspirational quote related to your business and consumers. Having inspirational music in the background of such videos is a big plus because it helps audiences connect emotionally with your message.
- Educate them in some way. This can look like providing your audience with a hack that can help them do something better or teaching them something useful.
- Provide entertainment value. During the pandemic, stuck in their homes, the fact is that people are really, really bored.
So free entertainment is a welcome and highly rewarded release.
This doesn’t necessarily mean you should whip out the prank videos and try to go viral just for the sake of going viral.
Instead, you can create content with a business purpose in an entertaining way.
- Are organized and systematic. You can do so by placing videos following a similar theme into a Facebook video playlist.
For example, say your company sells baking products, and you create videos like “Baking The Perfect Croissant”, and “Baking The Perfect Chocolate Cake”, you can combine these into a relevant playlist on Facebook entitled, let’s say, “Baking The Perfect Good.”
As the most viewed and shared form of content on Facebook, videos facilitate the buyer decision-making process by increasing reach, engagement, and retention.
Share effective, empathetic, and engaging video content to promote your products/services.
5. Don’t Abandon Your Facebook Page
The initial boost in metrics and sales revenue can easily induce complacency, thereby preventing businesses from maintaining a consistent effort.
While you may be tempted to relax after building some momentum and reduce Facebook interactivity to a lower frequency, it’s essential that you continue to post regularly. This will help you maintain the growth and visibility established for your business on the Facebook page in the initial months.
Instead, abandoning your page can wreak havoc on previous accomplishments and can gradually make your business disappear among the active competition.
Post meaningful and compelling content that keeps audiences engaged. Celebrating powerful events is a great way to contribute to a good cause while concurrently maintaining your brand presence.
TOMS’ frequent posts commonly include heartfelt messages that commemorate annual days that carry social, economic, political, and cultural significance.
Sharing strong messages on annual holidays and celebratory days will help your brand stand out while fighting the good fight. If you run out of ideas, share general posts with a slice of wit to keep engagement levels high!
Little Owl—an up-and-coming small eatery in New York—has established a strong reputation and presence owing to its frequent posts—many of which include re-shares when inspiration runs low!
The consistency and continual empathy have helped them earn incredible ratings and attract cosmopolitan audiences across New York. Keeping yourself on the map by actively sharing and re-sharing content will also increase your brand’s overall SEO.
6. Give Facebook Ads a Shot
As one of the most effective tools for small businesses, Facebook Ads are a powerful way to increase revenue and brand awareness. With Facebook use at an all-time high, small businesses can effectively market their products/services without worrying about engagement.
As the fastest and most cost-effective advertising strategy, Facebook Ads increase website traffic and dramatically lower cost per acquisition. According to research, over 3 million businesses actively advertise on Facebook!
Facebook’s Ad Manager facilitates campaign management, thereby making the process easier than alternative advertising strategies. With a few clicks, you can successfully run your ads across multiple platforms and receive extensive and robust analytics.
Facebook’s excellent targeting capabilities are extremely effective in helping small businesses micro-target their audience.
They do so by allowing you to tag not only specific demographics of users but also their exact interests. For example, if someone has liked a page related to your niche, you can literally ride off the coattails of this page’s audience to target them for your business.
For a Facebook ad to be successful, it needs to have three key components:
- Specific and accurate targeting. Picture hitting a bull’s eye in a sea of people with varied interests.
- Compelling words or copy.
- A solid image or video to make your point and reel the casual scroller into being a customer.
Not only does this increase conversions, but it also reduces customer attrition (loss) as users that deviate from the target audience are gradually eliminated.
The platform’s rich payoff helps businesses remarket to audiences and build a sustainable brand identity.
7. Collaborate With Similar Businesses to Increase Your Following
Struggling to boost your following? Collaborating with businesses in the same industry is a great way to double or triple your following.
Ideal for small businesses, partnerships increase visibility within the same niche, thereby attracting potential customers with a strong intent to purchase.
For instance, if you own a small salon, we recommend partnering with local businesses that sell hair products or skin rejuvenation tools. Approach them with a cross-promotional offer to increase following and sales for your business. Similarly, they’ll also benefit from the collaboration, as your customers will visit their website and purchase their products/services.
While the clientele will be similar, the contrasting products/services will ensure that one business’s traffic isn’t transferred to the other. Instead, the mutual benefits will help each business enjoy greater audience reach and sales.
8. Boost Post Views by Using Hashtags
Using Facebook hashtags the right way is extremely effective in organically boosting page views. A recent study revealed that Facebook posts with hashtags receive 12.6% more engagement than those without.
Facebook brought in Hashtags to bring conversations regarding people, public events, and topics to the forefront. Meaning, the purpose of a hashtag is to get eyeballs on the conversation.
Each hashtag has its own unique URL and can be found using the Facebook search bar. You can research it by looking through the hashtag on Facebook. You can also click on a hashtag that is generated on another site such as LinkedIn or Instagram. Chances are, there will be a continuation of that hashtag on Facebook as well.
Once you find the trending topics in your niche/industry, participate!
Join the conversation, take a stance, and/or provide deeper insight/value into the topic.
This will help you stand out.
9. Create a Private Group to Establish a Close Connection with Your Loyal Audience
While this powerful strategy seems counterintuitive to many, it’s a great way to establish a strong connection with loyal customers. A private Facebook group increases personal engagement and helps frequent customers feel included in the brand’s decision-making process.
Whether you’re working on a new product or are considering releasing an in-demand service, a quick heads up to your customers can go a long way in increasing audience retention.
We recommend posting polls, updates, and behind-the-scenes images and videos to keep your audience engaged and entertained. In addition, ask for their feedback and announce special discounts to establish a connection that goes beyond a superficial buyer-seller relationship.
CJ’s Coffee Cafe’s lighthearted, fun, and rewarding poll is a great example of engaging with group members and incorporating a little giveaway at the end:
Whether you follow a similar strategy or create a unique group atmosphere for your customers, conscientiousness and dedication will help create a community.
As the group members feel appreciated and involved, they’re also more likely to unknowingly market your products/services to friends and family, thereby boosting reach and engagement.
10. Ask Professionals for Help!
Now you know all the basics, you need to build a strong foundation to understand how to build your small business’ Facebook page growth.
You understand the importance of creating a separate Facebook business page, having an empathetic and crisis-friendly tone in your brand messaging, monitoring insights to improve, using engaging Facebook videos, Facebook Ads, staying consistent in your content release frequency, Hashtags, collaborating with other small businesses, and the power of private groups/communities.
While this is critical information and certainly will put you on your path to success, it is by no means the end of your research phase entirely.
You may come across many hiccups along the way that can easily be eliminated as a result of vast previous experience in this field of Digital Marketing.
As one of the leading digital marketing service providers in the U.S., we offer expert Facebook management services across the globe. Our experience has helped us complete over 20,000 SEO projects for a wide range of clients in varying industries.
We also offer award-winning PPC marketing, reputation management, content marketing, and web design and development services to help small businesses boost revenue and use Facebook to expand their business during the ongoing crisis. Our 100% back money guarantee ensures there are no contractual obligations that make small business owners feel hesitant.
Browse through our 3 phase SEO process to get started!