I know there are a ton of articles out there that give tips on using Facebook for business. They always say to be engaging, but I feel like they don't always explain how to do that very thoroughly. I want to make sure you know how to do Facebook the right way, because Google now takes social authority of a website into consideration for keyword rankings. Social authority refers to how engaged you are in online communities such as Facebook and Twitter. To have good social authority, you have to be active and engaging in these communities. As an SEO company, that’s easy for us to say; but, it's not always easy for others to actually implement. Each of the tips below will help you become truly engaged, which will strengthen your social media marketing and contribute to strong social authority for SEO.
Like and Be Liked – Have you ever noticed on Twitter that, if you follow a bunch of people, many of them follow you back? The same concept applies for Facebook, only on a smaller scale. Make a list of every company you do business with, every company your family and friends work for…every company you have any connection with. Go to Facebook, look for all those companies, and “Like” them all (unless, perhaps, they are companies you wouldn't want your clients to think you have a connection with). Most likely, you will find that many of them will soon “Like” your page back. Not only will the companies like you back, but some individuals within those companies will also “Like” your page.
The real key is to “Like” businesses you have connections with because they will be more likely to feel compelled to “Like” your page back since they know you (wow, I just said “like” like a ton of times right there).
Use Your Email Signature – If you haven't already, place sharing icons linked to your social networks in the signature of your emails. If you have other employees, have them all do it. That way, you increase your ability to let people know you are on Facebook, Twitter, etc. They don't even have to look you up.
Facebook Isn’t Twitter – Is your Twitter account synched with your Facebook page? If so, are you using that automated feed as your Facebook comments? It’s actually not wise to rely on your Twitter feed for engaging Facebook content. It's convenient to post in one place for both sites, but the messages that are good for Twitter aren't always good for Facebook. They are too short to prompt conversations on Facebook. Additionally, your Twitter feed can’t add photos to your Facebook posts. Photos catch peoples' eyes much more frequently than just a few sentences.
Ask Questions – Facebook only works if you get people to converse with you and with each other. Use interesting questions to help get the conversation started.
Open-Ended Questions – These questions prompt people to respond with longer, relevant comments – if it's a topic that interests them. Topics should be fun and timely. Sometimes they can relate to your business, but they don't always have to. For example, if you own a restaurant, you could ask:
Conduct a Poll – Have you ever used the “Poll” feature in the box where you type your comments? Well, using these once in a while gets people involved in your site and gives them a reason to potentially return to see results. Also, people have the option of sharing these polls with their friends. That means their friends could be drawn to your page, creating more of an opportunity for them to “Like” you. Don't get discouraged if you don't get a lot of participation in your polls right away. It will take time.
Be Useful – Post information people can actually use. If you own a restaurant, you could post some great recipes. If you are a Realtor, you could post tips on how to review and improve your credit report before seeking a home loan.
Save Your Time – If you feel that posting to Twitter and Facebook individually takes up too much time, use a social media management tool. These tools allow you to post and comment on messages for both Twitter and Facebook in one place. They also automatically shrink your URLs. I recommend HootSuite. It’s easy to use and web-based, so you can access it from any computer.
No Hard Sell – Get your audience interested in you through interesting conversation, not by constantly talking about your company. You should promote yourself sometimes, but not all the time.
So, that was a lot of information to cram into a blog post. But, I think it could be really helpful in a company’s constant quest for good, relevant Facebook fans. How has Facebook been working for you? Have any suggestions or thoughts?