Make Facebook Work For You

Facebook.  It seems to be a necessary ingredient for most of us, in the recipe of success.  And even if we wish it weren’t so, most of us include it in our marketing strategy.  After all, it’s not perfect, but it is still free.  And most of our clients are on it, to some degree.  And now that wedding season is winding down for a lot of us, we have more time to devote to our social media efforts. So let’s talk for a moment about some do’s and don’ts of Facebook etiquette so that we can make it work for our businesses!

DO: Follow the 80/20 Rule.  Your posts should be 80% work and business related and 20% play and personal.  Now some may argue with this, but people want to know who YOU are.  What kind of a photographer would you be? Can they relate to you? Would they enjoy spending time with you?

DON’T: Sell, sell ,sell! The surest way to lose followers, or have them hide you from their feed, is to constantly post promotions, and adds, or push goods and services.  People do not hop on Facebook to have someone trying to convince them that they need something.  They are they to be social, look at pretty images, see what folks are up to, and be entertained.  Scott Hancock, the Director of Social Media at Marketing Plus says, this, “Posting ads all of the time is the equivalent of advertising during your favorite television show. You don’t sit through the commercials, you leave the room. Trying to constantly sell on Facebook will cause your followers to leave your page in a hurry, just like you run from the room during commercials.”

DO: Respond to folks that comment on your Facebook wall.  And if possible, respond within an hour, no later than 24 hours. If you wait longer than that, they’ve probably already forgotten what it was they even said. Also, responding within an hour or so, shows Facebook it’s an interesting feed, and they will keep putting it back to the top.  I know that’s probably not exactly how it works, but it’s something like that.

DON’T: Don’t ignore your fans, your audience.  They want to know there’s a human behind the “social media.”  And when possible, leave comments that elicit another response.  Throw the ball back and keep the conversation going. Ask a question if possible, and tag specific people to answer.

DO: Keep you posts under 80 characters. According to Kissmetrics, “Posts with less than 80 characters received 66% more engagement (likes and comments) than lengthier counterparts.”

DON’T: Do not write lengthy posts. Adding context to a photo or a link is key. However, crafting a novel length status could cause followers’ eyes to glaze over and have them looking for the “hide” button.

DO: Ask Questions.  Facebook fans love a good question.  After all, who doesn’t like to give their opinion and be heard? Question posts have a 92% higher comment rate than non-question posts.  Make sure to put your question at the end of the post. It will elicit 15% more engagement than a question posted in the middle of a status.

DON’T: Do not write fake comments.  Until recently I didn’t even know this was a thing, but apparently you can create fake accounts and post on your Fan Page.  Don’t do it.  People will catch on and you risk losing credibility and the trust factor.  It’s not worth it.

DO: Post 5-7 times a week, but not more than that.  And never more than twice a day. Lab42’s research reveals that 82% of people think that Facebook is a good place to interact with brands.  However, 47% don’t like brands if they clutter their newsfeed, which leads us to the last don’t.

DON’T: Do not clutter your fans newsfeed! Why? Simply this. A whopping 73% of social media users have “unliked” a brand on Facebook, because the brand posted too frequently.  I know I have, haven’t you?

Thank you to Vertical Response for the percentages and statistics sited in this article. 

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