facebook

facebook-profile-intro

I’m just going through my Facebook friends list and I’m surprised how many of my self employed friends (who have Facebook business pages) are not linking to them.

The image above is a screen shot from my personal Facebook profile. On Facebook, if you click on either of my company names, you would be taken directly to the Facebook page for that business.

If you have a business page but your “Work and education” section points to your previous job when you were employed, you really need to update it.

This is a really basic and simple way to get your business known, and if you’re already using Facebook to promote your business, then it is something you need to address.

If you don’t have the time or you don’t know how to, I can help.

Providing you already have a Facebook business page, I can ensure your profile links to it correctly for a nominal fee of £10.

If you don’t already have a Facebook Page, I can help with that as well.

Contact us to find out more.

 

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If you have a Facebook Page for your business, you’re probably constantly trying to increase the number of people who see your Facebook updates.

There are several ways to do this.

  • Create awesome content so that people comment, like and share your posts
  • Ask lots of questions; you’ll find that people want to give you an answer
  • Make sure you post when people are most likely to be looking through their newsfeed

Today I’d like to show you how to find out when your Page Likers are actually using Facebook. You’re going to do this by utilising Facebook Insights – a tool which remains a mystery to most business owners.

First of all, go to your Page and click on Facebook Insights. You can find the “See Insights” button right at the top of your admin panel. Click on that and your Insights Dashboard will appear. This is where you can measure the impact your posts are having; what posts are most popular with your audience, which posts get the most engagement etc

I would encourage you to play around with your Facebook Insights and see what you can find to help you, but for now, you will see a row of tabs at the top, click on “Posts”.

A graph will appear – this is what mine looks like…

Screen shot of Lesley Whiteman Social Media's Facebook Page

 

Across the top you will see boxes representing each day in a recent 1 week period. If you move your cursor over the boxes, the graph will alter to show when those people were on Facebook. So I can see that my Likers use Facebook pretty much all day, but slightly more in the evenings, with a peak at around 8-9pm during the week and earlier at weekends.

So how can you use this information to your advantage? I would post just before your peak so it’s waiting in your Likers newsfeeds. If I was an early riser I might be tempted to post straight away, but I’d be better off scheduling my posts (using Facebook’s own scheduler) for mid evening. Even better, I could get in the habit of being on Facebook at the right time and posting when my potential clients are actually there. That way I could respond to people immediately and Facebook would show my posts to more of my Likers as it prefers a real time posts – I like to see it as a thankyou for spending time at Facebook.

If your audience is worldwide, then you may find you have several peaks and will need to post accordingly. You could even target your posts to the audience that you will have at that moment in time. To help you with this, go back to where you have the tabs at the top of the Page and click on people – there you can find out what countries your Likers are from. At the other end of the spectrum, if you market to a very local audience, you can also see which town your Likers are from.

I’d love to hear how you’re using Insights to help you to maximise Facebook for your business. Please comment below.

 

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Have you ever considered how burglars could be harvesting the information you post on Facebook? This is relevant to both Personal Profiles as well as Business Pages, particularly if you work from home. Your Facebook Page is public and if you announce that you’re going on holiday for 2 weeks, how difficult would it be for a burglar to find out where you live?

How Burglars Are Using Social Media

Explore more infographics like this one on the web’s largest information design community – Visually.

 

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Man walking through a maze

Is there a quicker way?

 

Over the years I’ve helped many sole traders establish how to make social media marketing work for them. What they need is a strategy that will be effective, but also won’t take too much time. After all, they wear many hats; service provider/manufacturer, book keeper, cleaner, tea maker, sales person and more!

As part of my training, I make them aware of social media shortcuts they can take. The trouble with these shortcuts is that they’re not ideal – they have consequences. I don’t see it as my role to tell people which ones to take, just to inform them they exist, and also to point out the down-side and then people can make their own decisions. We’re all adults, and we all have our own ideas on what is and isn’t good business practise.

What I’d like to do is conduct a little research here and find out from you what shortcuts you use, and which ones really put you off. I don’t expect to reach a definitive answer, although it would be great if I could report back in a future blog what the majority prefer.

Linking Facebook to Twitter – This means that everything you post to Facebook gets tweeted. The downside is that often tweets are partial sentences and you have to click on the link to read the whole post on Facebook. It can also be perceived by you Twitter followers that you don’t really care about them.

Linking Twitter to Facebook – This means that all your Tweets will be posted on your Facebook Page. Unfortunately Twitter has a language of its own so retweeting, hash-tagging and follow Friday makes no sense to Facebook users who don’t use Twitter. Again, does it also show a lack of appreciation for your Facebook Fans?

Using Hootsuite or similar  – Hootsuite has lots of benefits that have no negative implications, such as scheduling to twitter and following twitter lists, but when it’s used to schedule posts to Facebook you’ll often find that Facebook will penalise you by not showing the post to as many of your Fans than if you’d posted it directly on Facebook.

Personally I don’t use any of these shortcuts for my fully managed clients, although I do use Hootsuite for its many positive aspects, and encourage my training clients to do this too, but it’s my business, whereas your business is probably something entirely different and social media can only take up a small fraction of your working day.

I would really appreciate some feedback on this, so if you could comment on…

Which shortcuts do you use – any of the above or something different?

Are there any that really irritate you and shouldn’t be used?

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As Facebook Graph Search is gradually being rolled out, now is probably a good time to have a look at your privacy settings and ensure you’re comfortable with who can see your posts, pictures and personal information.

This infographic, courtesy of Marketo, shows how to customize your privacy settings in order to control who sees the content you post.

Please share this post with your friends and family as they could be among the 13 million Facebook users who have never touched their privacy settings.

 

how-graph-search-affects-your-privacy

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I like this new development from Facebook! Rolling out in the US as I write, is the Facebook Card, which is a gift card, but, as we’ve come to expect from Facebook it has a little extra pizazz.

Through Facebook, you’ll be able to decide on the retailer and the value and then complete the transaction. Your friend will get an instant notification of your gift and the Facebook Card will arrive in the post within a few days. Your friend can then use it in the normal way, but they need to hold onto the card as it’s re-usable. Next time they’re lucky enough to be the recipient of a Facebook Card, they won’t even have to wait for Mr Postie as the credit will  be added to their card instantly.

What I really like is that one card can hold multiple gift balances, which might just reduce the number of cards we all carry around with us. So within your Facebook Card, you might have £20 to spend at one store and £50 to spend at another, more if you’re lucky! What’s more you can view your balances online or even from your phone via your account settings, and Facebook will notify you of any changes to your balance by sending a notification to your phone.

I hope this rolls out in the UK too! What are your thoughts?

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You know that Facebook business page that you’ve created – the one that you’ve spent hours creating interesting content for and have spent good money on Facebook Ads to build your following? Well earlier this year Facebook let slip that most users only see about 16% of updates from business pages like yours.

It’s a shocking statistic, isn’t it? The reason for this is Facebook’s EdgeRank algorithm. This comes from Facebook’s desire to present you with the most relevant and valuable updates from your network and it isn’t something that marketers can afford to ignore.

So what is EdgeRank?

EdgeRank determines which posts you see and which ones you don’t from the value of your social objects — statuses, links, photos, videos.

Facebook views all of these inputs as “edges” and gives them a value based on the following factors:

1. Affinity score between viewing user and edge creator

2. Weight for this edge type (like, comment, tag, etc.)

3. Time decay is a factor based on how long ago the edge was created

What Does this Mean to You?

Affinity — How close are you to the user? Do they interact with you regularly on Facebook? If they do, that’s great! EdgeRank will probably show your content to that user more often. Unfortunately, affinity is only one way, so Liking everything your fans say will not improve your EdgeRank.

Weight — This relates to the level of engagement your Page has. Photos and videos usually create more engagement so Facebook may give more weight to these types of posts. It might be worth experimenting to find out if creating this type of content means it reaches more of your fans.

Time Decay — A great title, but all it really means is that the older your post is, the less chance it has of being in your fan’s home feed. What’s that saying about yesterday’s news being tomorrow’s fish & chip wrapper? This is why it’s important to post regularly on Facebook.

How Can You Optimize Facebook now you’re in the Know?

If you’re looking for engagement, remember to ask questions — instead  “Hope you had a great weekend” try “What did you do over the weekend?”

Facebook gives you the option of targeting your page updates demographically, so if it’s appropriate, segment your posts to increase relevance and foster engagement.

We’d love to hear how experimenting with your content affects the number of people who see your posts, so do leave a comment below, and don’t forget to comment regularly on our Facebook Page if you want to see our posts in your newsfeed!

 

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If you thought once you’d Liked a Facebook Page you’d be seeing all its status updates, think again…

Facebook determines what to send to your newsfeed based on how often you visit a particular page and how often you interact with it – so if you don’t visit a page often, and when you do, you’re a passive visitor, Facebook may decide that you’re not really interested in them, and stop posting their updates to your newsfeed.

If you’d like to receive all status updates from your favourite pages, here’s what you need to do…

  • Hover your mouse over the “Liked” button, or click on it – I’m afraid Facebook is far from consistent! One of those ways should work…
  • Once you get the drop down menu, Make sure that “Show in News Feed” is checked.

In theory, this should solve the problem of Facebook second guessing what you want to see and getting it wrong! However, to be sure, go back to your favourite pages regularly and don’t rely on Facebook to send what you want to see, to your newsfeed.

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One of the things that I still don’t like about Facebook Timelines for Business is the way posts by others are grouped in a box, instead of featuring as your own post would.

There is a way of overcoming this, although Facebook has hidden it well! It’s a manual solution, but at least you get to choose which comments to feature in your Facebook Timeline.

Go to your “recent posts by others” box. Hover over a message and a cross will appear in the top right corner. Click on it (go on, be brave – you won’t delete it!) and then click on “allowed on page”.

When you refresh your Page, this update will have magically moved to the left so that any visitors to your page will be able to see it, just as they would one of your own posts.

Go on, try it as soon as you get a new comment!

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I think there are many companies who have got to this point, and it’s probably the worst reason to get involved with Facebook, Twitter and social media in general.

Let’s press the pause button and consider …

–          Your business goals

–          How will social media help you achieve them?

–          What does success look like?

–          What’s your strategy to get there?

If you’re struggling to answer any of these questions, then do give us a call and we can help through the process.

Once you’ve answered these questions then it’s time to implement, but do keep referring back to keep yourself on track with your strategy.

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