The first time I used Facebook, I wasn’t impressed. It was 2010 and I was 16 years old. I had been an avid Myspace user since Panic! At The Disco was popular, and I had no intention of hopping on the Facebook wagon because I didn’t see a need for it.
At the time, my adolescent brain couldn’t fathom Myspace ever dying out. Now, I don’t know one person who still uses it. I don’t even know if it’s still available to log on to!
Once Facebook started to expand, I became accustomed to posting daily statuses, uploading photos, and filling out those ridiculous surveys that would have been posted on the Myspace public boards.
Now, I work exclusively with Facebook. I get to explore it’s advertising possibilities during my 9-5, and I experiment with the social community aspect with my side hustle. I’m on that sucker from the time I wake up, until the time I go to sleep. Since 2010, Facebook has exploded with ways to communicate, learn, create, tell stories, and market yourself.
I want to focus on that “market yourself” part. I think that’s the most important.
Sure, that photo of Aunt Jane’s baby is adorable, but will that really help your brand?
But there are so many ways that Facebook can help your business or brand. I’m here to break it all down for you, and get you started with Facebook. Let’s start at the beginning…
First, is Facebook the right platform for you?
This question is pretty crucial - in general I would always answer yes, but you need to evaluate your marketing goals and see if they align with the type of platform that Facebook is.
Facebook runs on engagement and interaction. If you aren’t familiar with Facebook’s algorithm, essentially the posts that are more relevant (because they are being engaged with through shares, comments, and likes) appear first in the timeline. That’s why you see a post from “5 hours ago” below a post from “12 hours ago”. It’s a complicated system that has honestly, in my opinion, put a kink in advertising and organic reach.
Facebook did this to eliminate a free marketing. With this algorithm, you aren’t bombarded with posts about an all boys summer camp if you’re a mother with two daughters. That post wouldn’t be relevant to you, so Facebook isn’t going to serve it to ya.
Facebook is also about community.
I’ll give you a quick breakdown of other social platforms so you can get a sense of what I’m trying to explain:
Twitter is a fast paced conversation platform.
Instagram is a visual platform.
Snapchat is a fast paced visual platform.
Pinterest is a knowledge-based platform.
And out star of the show - Facebook, is a community driven platform.
Think about what you’re doing (personally and professionally) on these platforms and see if they align with what I am saying.
You probably aren’t using Instagram to have a full blown conversation with a client.
You aren’t using Twitter to build a tight knit community of supporters.
You should be using Facebook to build a personal presence for your brand.
Here is how you can quickly decide if Facebook is a good platform for you:
Does your business require people?
Will your brand benefit from a community?
Is it important for you to have a personal presence that your clients can connect with?
99.999%, the answer to these should be yes. If you’re building a business, you should be concerned with all of those things.
If you’re a baker, you need people to come into your store.
If you’re a jewelry designer, you need to build connections with the clients who want custom pieces.
If you’re a photographer, you want to build a community of people who support your work and will help you grow.
If you’ve decided that Facebook is a solid platform to work with, read on, badass!
If you don’t think you & Facebook are going to work out, just give me this one blog post to try and convince you.
If I still haven’t by the end, you can go on your merry way ;)
This is like the foundation of your social media presence on Facebook. Without this, you aren’t going to get anywhere (I mean that in the nicest way possible). Using a personal Facebook page to market your business just isn’t going to cut it - because you aren’t given the right tools (and Facebook will deactivate your account).
When you create a Facebook page, you’re immediately given the option to choose your target audience. You can’t do that with a personal Facebook page. You get the opportunity to categorize your business based on type, which will give your brand authority in your niche.
Here is what the Rock Your Creative Life Facebook page looks like!
Immediately you can see what my brand is (via a cover photo), some featured posts that help the viewer, what type of brand the company is, and a sign up button for newsletters. This is all customizable based on your brand.
Your Facebook page should be the hub of your community - with you as it’s ruler. Here you should be posting updates, photos, and announcing products. Right now Facebook allows you to post a status, upload a photo or video, broadcast live, get sign ups, get messages, create an event, create an offer, create a job posting, or write a note.
A few ways to engage your audience through your Facebook page:
1// Host a q&a via live broadcast.
2// Post a picture of your workspace.
3// Create a limited time offer for one of your products.
4// Chat with your viewers via message.
I didn’t realize this features full potential until around November. I had primarily used Facebook groups for Bullet Journaling, and a pen-pal service I created with a few other bloggers in 2013. It wasn’t until I came across groups like Femtrepreneur and BohoBerry that I really understood the full potential. Facebook Groups are designed to promote a niche community that you determine for your brand. For example, my Facebook group focuses on empowering women to reach their professional and personal goals. My group members are my supporters and some of my biggest fans and friends. I feel more connected to these people, and I encourage my viewers to join so they can become connected to RYCL too!
I don’t use this as my primary sale outlet.
Yes, I’ll promote my new blog posts, and any product I create, but my goal isn’t to sell things here. I want to use these people as my sounding board. I’ll ask questions, tell stories, and engage with the group as I would my friends.
Creating a Facebook Group is a perfect way to get more engagement, get closer to people, and make your business more personable. Figure out the best type of group for your brand, and use it to your advantage.
For example, every subscriber I get is automatically given a link to join my Facebook Group. It’s also included in all of my courses, and sometimes included in a content upgrade.
This is a perfect way to offer something in exchange for an email address.
FACEBOOK BUSINESS MANAGER
My entire life revolves around this tool, which is completely free. I’m going to break down this tool based on the type of team you might have. I’ve worked as a one-man-show with Facebook Biz Mgr, and I’ve worked with an entire team across once Business Manager account.
If you’re a one man show, this is great for managing different pages. I personally have 2 of my own pages, plus all of my clients pages linked to my Rock Your Creative Life Business Manager. If you’re only managing pages that you created, I wouldn’t say this tool is a necessity (unless you’re building ads...more on that later). The benefits lie in the fact that you can collaborate on pages without needing passwords, or invading others privacy.
For example, I am listed as an “Editor” on the Effort Lez Facebook Page because I only write content for them. I don’t need admin access, and Facebook business manager allows myself, PLUS my business be a part of the page on EL’s terms.
Now, let’s transition - maybe you’ve got a team for your business, or an entire team for social media. Business Manager allows you to have ONE account linked to multiple Facebook's. This is primarily what happens in my 9-5 job. I handle all Facebook accounts for our company - which is about 50+ accounts. I am an admin on the business account, along with about 10 other employees. You can assign assets to each person, review permissions, and each person uses their own log in so no personal information is misused.
I really like this because the entire team can see who is working on each account, what their role is, and who to contact. It’s a great team management tool if you’re running a lot of accounts.
Something else that I LOVE about Facebook Business Manager: The interface. On my dashboard I can see all of my account insights (active campaigns, amount spend on ads, post engagements, people reached, etc) and assign favorites to access quickly.
Looking to get creative? Check out the Business Manager creative hub - a place for inspiration when creating Facebook Ads for your brand.
If you’re a business owner, you understand the importance of a special offer. We see them everywhere - "50% off for a limited time! BoGo half off!"
Offers are what reels us in as customers and encourages us to purchase more at a lower price. It’s a great marketing strategy, and Facebook has brought it into the Social world.
You can now create offers that Facebook viewers “claim”, and can use online or in your store (or both!). I can make these in about 15 minutes, and Facebook makes sure that the offers are saved for people to use when they are close to your store.
If a potential customer saved your offer on Facebook 3 days ago, and has now arrived at your store, Facebook will notify them that they have an offer available - and bam! You have a conversion!
These offers can run as ads that you pay for (which hit a larger, more targeted audience), or you can run them as a post on your Facebook page (which will only go to a percentage of your Facebook fans). This is a great option for a tighter marketing budget.
I get it. Live video can be one scary bitch. The first time I tried to film a YouTube video, my voice was shaking and I said “ummmm..” at least 65 times., The video was 16 minutes long and I had taught my viewers nothing.
BUT, the good thing here is that video sparked my interest in video creation. After that first YT video, I was obsessed with trying to get better. I wanted to create content that was different than every other blogger out there.
Now, as a businesswoman, I’m utilizing instant video. Facebook allows you to capture live video from your phone or computer whenever you want. I am obsessed. I love the instant gratification of being able to hit “Go Live”, and I especially like that my viewers can interact with me, and each other.
I have used Facebook live to launch a course, talk about my brand, and build a Facebook group.
We are insanely visual creatures. Video is going to become the leading form of digital advertising, and jumping on that bandwagon now will pay off in the long run. Not only are you creating stimulating content, you’re showing your clients, or viewers, that there is a person beneath the brand that you’ve built. I don’t have to have fancy lighting and a high quality camera for my Facebook live events, because that’s not what I need to give my viewers. What my viewers need are jam packed sessions that inform them, inspire them, and bring them closer to me.
Here are a few ways to use Facebook Live today:
1// Host a q&a about your brand.
2// Showcase a product.
3// Tell a personal story.
4// Teach people something.
BUT WHAT ABOUT FACEBOOK ADS?
This is the motherlode, and I'm planning on writing an entire blog post that will go in-depth about the functionality, creativity, and objectives of Facebook ads. Want to be notified when that post is up and running? Sign up for the RYCL email tribe.
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RYCL works with brands to grow their social media presence, and expand their audience. See what RYCL can do for you by reaching out to Rhiannon, or learning more right here.