So, you’ve decided to make use of social media to promote your business or organization. You’ve created a Page or Profile, and you’ve managed to attract 30 or 40 fans or followers. You may have thought that people would just flock to your page, but that isn’t the case. Besides your employees and your brother-in-law, you haven’t attracted any potential customers to your profile.
You’re probably wondering, “Now What! How do I grow my audience?”
You’re not alone. Growing your audience will take some time, but we’ve put together a number of tips that can accelerate your audience growth.
1. Complete and Compliant profile
This sounds easy, but everyday, we find pages and profiles with incomplete or non-compliant information. Be sure that you have an appropriate profile photo (that fits), an engaging cover photo or header photo, and an About Us section or Description that is complete, informative, and engaging.
2. Email Signature
Include links to your social networks in your email signature. You can choose to include icons with hyperlinks to directly to your page or profile, or you can use text with hyperlinks. Both are effective.
3. Invite existing Friends/Followers
Facebook has a feature that allows you to invite your existing Friends from your personal Facebook profile. In the ADMIN panel, click on BUILD AUDIENCE, and then click on INVITE FRIENDS. A list of your personal Facebook friends will pop up and you can select who you would like to invite. Be selective. If your product is designed for mothers with small children, there is little value in inviting your 68-year-old Uncle Frank to LIKE your page. Sure, it’s nice to have his support, but all the same…be selective.
But, patience grasshopper…be sure your page or profile is complete before you start inviting people.
4. Invite your contacts by Email, LinkedIn
Don’t be shy. Send out a brief and informative email to the contacts in your address book or LinkedIn contacts. Let them know that you’ve created a new page or profile that you think they will find helpful or informative, and offer a LINK directly to your profile. Include a Call to Action. “Please LIKE our page for regular features and discounts, offered exclusively to our online fans”.
The what? Yep, that’s right…there is a section on your personal page where you can include a brief BIO about yourself. Why not include a link to your page or profile, and encourage friends to find out more about your business or organization there.
This is much more effective than regularly blasting your friends with offers and features about your business, in your daily updates. These are your FRIENDS. They are interested in your personal updates, not a constant sales pitch. Keep the personal and business content separate.
While you’re in the ABOUT section of your personal profile, be sure to link your Facebook page in the Works at
6. Custom URL
Facebook, YouTube, Google+, and other networks will assign you a URL when you create an account. You can shorten and customize your URL…but you can only do it ONCE. So, be sure about what name you want to use, and double check your spelling before you click the submit button.
Why choose a custom URL? The URL that is assigned to you could be 150 characters long. If you choose to cut and paste your URL into twitter, you will have used up all of your characters. Plus…it just looks more professional.
or schedule 7. Custom Landing Page
We’re sure that you’ve seen these. When you arrive at a Facebook page, you must LIKE the page before you can continue on into the page. This works, but it can also fail miserably. Forcing people to LIKE your page, isn’t a genuine as a visitor who chooses to LIKE your page.
8. Custom Tabs
Facebook tabs are apps that are authorized by Facebook, and they allow you to connect people to other networks, run content, promote events…endless possibilities.
Enter to Win!
Everyone loves a contest. Everyone loves free stuff. But there is a right way and a wrong way to implement a contest on Facebook. Everyday, we see small business violate Facebook’s VIDEO by using the good ol’ “Like our page” and “Share this post” to win a [prize]. According to Facebook, “you must not condition registration or entry upon the user liking a Wall post, or commenting”
Everyone has a preferred network. They may use multiple networks, but they take a shining to one over the others. So…help them find you on their preferred network. Set up Tabs and Links that quickly and easily transport your fans and followers to your other social networks.
VIDEO11. Contact Form or Tab
This is a great way to gather email addresses for sending a monthly newsletter to your contacts. The major email marketing companies like MailChimp or Constant Contact offer features that allow you to create Facebook Tabs that allow fans to quickly and easily sign up for email updates.
12. Know your Target Audience
We all have different online behaviours. We know that 15-25 year olds use social media differently than 45-65 year olds. Knowing your target audience can help you prepare relevant content. It can also be the key, in knowing WHEN to post [or schedule] your information. Knowing what time of day or day of the week your audience is typically online, will help you reach your audience, and increase the change that your message will be shared by your fans and followers.
13. Post content that is relevant and sharable
Easier said than done, we know. We have clients ask us all the time if we can make a certain post ‘go viral’. No one can do that. If you want to increase engagement, post a variety of content. Videos, Photos, Questions…mix it up. Ultimately, you need to think about your audience when you are posting.
14. Like other Business Pages…from your business page
On Facebook, you can LIKE pages as an individual, but you can also LIKE pages as a Business. Here is a quick VIDEO that shows you how to engage with other pages from your business page. Connect with suppliers, associations, or organizations that share a common interest or client base.
15. Fan rewards or OFFERS
Have you made use of Facebook’s OFFER feature? It is a great way to grow your audience. Extending exclusive offers to your Facebook fans makes them feel so special, that they want to share it with their friends and family. If you’re not familiar with Facebook OFFERS, here is a quick VIDEO on how they work.
16. Open a profile on numerous Social Networks
One key reason for this. SEO. Search Engine Optimization will improve if you have profiles on various networks. When a potential client searches for information in their search engine [Google, Bing, Yahoo…] you will have a greater opportunity to show up in the results, if you have multiple networks.
17. Pay Per Click Marketing
No matter how small or large your budget, Pay Per Click marketing on Facebook will be a highly effective way of growing your audience. You have the option of promoting your page, or promoting an individual post on your page. Facebook allows you to target your advert to other users based on geography, age, gender, education level, interests, and more.
We have hundreds of other tips and tactics that we would be happy to share with you. We’ll be at the @Midwest, social media conference converging on Central Illinois, June 6-7, 2013. Register today!