Retailers often launch a Facebook page with much fanfare. Initially, loyal customers, friends and family members flock to the page to show their support.
But after this inaugural rush, how does a business owner or retail marketing specialist create additional momentum and prevent the page from becoming stagnant? After all, it is important to build a circle of client prospects beyond the “regulars.”
To drive these prospects to your page, you need to do the following.
Interact. Move beyond simply interacting with those “fans” who post on your business page. Actively set aside time each week to visit the personal pages of shop patrons and like their page posts. Comment on posts where appropriate.
Post regularly. There is no magic number of posts per day, week or month to make a page a success. Many business owners commit to a minimum of three posts a week and will increase that amount based on the response of their audience.
Posting on a set schedule also helps business owners become comfortable with the marketing tool and ease into making it a part of their day.
Keep content fresh and varied. Facebook pages consisting of only text updates can get tuned out. Use a combination of text, photos, videos and surveys to engage. Share links to online content, too. Be sure to alternate the types of posts to avoid inducing reader fatigue.
Place a Facebook ad. While Facebook ads have gotten a bad rap from large corporations in recent months, when used properly they are a powerful tool in the small retailer’s toolbox for identifying new customers. Investments are minimal. Retailers can experience an uptick in new page “likes” with a monthly investment as low as $100.
Facebook enables its advertisers to hone in on specific criteria and avoid spending dollars showing ads to people unlikely to patronize their business. For example, ads can be adjusted so they are shown to individuals within a select zip code and age range – and even hobbies like gardening or cooking.
Remember, above all, the most successful social media campaigns are conducted by business owners or representatives who are authentic and who truly enjoy interacting with their customers online.
Jennifer L. Cherry is senior vice president at Marx Layne & Co., a Farmington Hills-based marketing, public relations and digital media agency. She leads Marx Layne’s digital and social media division.