If you’re ready to launch your first social media campaign, there is a strong chance that you’re thinking of using Facebook – and why not? Considering that over 250M people log into Facebook daily, that’s a pretty massive audience. While Facebook search needs improvement, it is pretty easy to find Facebook Groups and Pages related to your niche – hire a web researcher off of Odesk, and for approximately $25, you can gather a spreadsheet with 100 records.
Furthermore, promoting your content using social media sends signals to Google which positively impact your search rankings. By exactly how much, no one knows, but this data on the correlation between link metrics and social sharing is pretty compelling.
Now, there’s a ton of people already ON Facebook trying to promote THEIR business. Some of them will be successful successful in capturing that highly valuable nanosecond of attention from a prospective customer. Others will simply contribute to the overall noise of the web and add to the community’s collective level of irritation. Who are you going to be? A savvy marketer, or a Facebook wall spammer. Read on.
Facebook Rules of Engagement
You want to joint the right communities of course, and communities are organized around shared interests. So if you are an expert in solar financing and want to connect with people who are passionate about solar and want to live off the grid, it’s totally appropriate for you to share your expertise or current projects with the group. However, social networking has social etiquette of it’s own. It’s not too different from offline social etiquette, in fact. So imagine if you were walking into a cocktail party attended by solar living enthusiasts, you don’t want to show up, approach the first person you see, and start saying:
“You need a solar lease. I am an expert in solar financing, and I know you really want a home solar system – that’s why you’re here at this party, right? So buy my stuff, buy my stuff.”
Awkward. Party foul.
So, if you want to avoid being “That guy” take into consideration some of the golden rule to successful social promotion on Facebook.
Don’t be a Spammer
If you aren’t aware of the ‘rules’ of Facebook, you will find it rather easy to spam. You might not even be aware that you’re doing it. I mean, you may think, of cousre Joe Shmoe who is a solar installer in Reno wants to hear about my awesome solar leasing solutions. I’m just going to paste my link to his wall. He’ll be happy I shared the info….Not. So, what about them Ugg Boots?
Here are some handy tips on engaging with people on Facebook who share similar interests in a meaningful way. Trust me, when you do this, your target audience will be more likely to notice what it is that you are sharing.
If you share a link on someone else’s Facebook Page or on a Facebook Group Wall you will want to make sure you indicate why you are sharing that link.
When sharing links:
- If you make a post, ensure that you write a follow up comment that summarizes it
- In your post, talk about why the community should be interested and what your post will ultimately do for them
- Like the post
- Ask questions and comment back if people open dialogue with you
- Like your comments.
Facebook’s news feed favors content that has a lot of engagement signals – that is, posts with the most Likes and comments tend to rise to the top of the news feed and stay there for a while, for all the people in your network to see.
One final note, before you think about sharing, period, make sure that what you’re sharing is actually relevant to the audience. If it isn’t, find a relevant audience or post it to your own Wall, damnit.
Things to Avoid
Something you don’t want to do in any situation is post links everywhere without ensuring you have the right audience. If you continually post your links where they are not wanted, you will find that your profile is blocked by multiple users, and there is a strong chance that Facebook will ban your account. It is perfectly understandable that you want your product or service to be ‘out there’, but use discretion and approach the right people. Your business depends on it.