Facebook marketing has become integral to most businesses – large or small. But over time many have questioned the investment of time and money because of the decrease of organic exposure business pages get in people’s news feed. However, compared to other forms of paid marketing Facebook is still the most cost effective method to exposing your business brand and growing your database. It’s a matter of being strategic.
It is not a case of if you use Facebook marketing, but more about assessing how you use it to meet your marketing goals.
All too often people are focused on investing money on gaining likes and engagement, which is very much a short term gain unless that targeted audience are captured in some other more controllable manner to continually communicate with. Email marketing or retargeting advertising are two cost effective methods to keep your business front of mind to someone who has already started to show a vested interest in you.
The biggest benefit of email marketing is that it is a more controllable (and long term cost effective) way to deliver your message at the time you want your potential clients to hear it. The Facebook marketing focus should be on promoting a reason why people would want to join your email database. Subtly, this can be done by advertising blog articles to lead people back to your website where at the end of the article in the footer your email newsletter opt in is visible.
Paying $2-$5 to keep your blog article in the news feed, of a custom target audience for 2 to 3 days is less than what we spend on coffee – prioritising your marketing budget over the daily cafe coffee is a ‘brain over heart’ decision but surely the logic makes sense if it drives traffic to your website!
Because once you have website visitors who have shown an interest in your business, then a Facebook retargeting advertising campaign can be more focused on ‘selling’ by displaying to them sales funnel offers, promotions, events etc as they view any area of Facebook or other advertising partner sites.
Using both these digital marketing methods in unison helps you create a natural sales funnel and keeps your Facebook presence balanced with the visible content people want to engage with while keeping your brand presence clean from multiple promo posts in your followers news feeds that they tend to hide or mark as spam. By all means use the other Facebook functions to promote offers and events – but remember to make this investment of time and money strategic in helping you reach your long term goal.
The marketing goal for most businesses is to grow by expanding brand awareness, attracting new customers and increasing sales.
Is Facebook marketing necessary to the consultant with a personal brand?
To put it bluntly, Facebook marketing cannot happen via your personal profile because the advertising functions Facebook offers are only available to business pages.
All that you can do on a personal profile is collect post likes (which we can get a little addicted to), but this activity makes you no money. All it is, is hamster on a wheel engagement with no long term traction or personal brand development beyond your friends.
A business page for a person has multiple functions to assist you in promoting your services. At the top of your timeline you can list your services. If you are an author then the focus of ad spend might be behind a “Shop Now” button to send them to your book offer. When the focus is not on selling use the button to ‘’Sign Up” for an offer or your email newsletter. Other features like the events tab can be used to promote speaking engagements or workshops.
Many public profiles invest time and money into PR and writing for the media to build their personal brand and credibility. Facebook marketing can help you leverage from this investment by boosting media articles to increase the traffic interest to the article. The media channels monitor the writers who produce the most traffic in order to recognise industry influencers. These people are the first obvious choice to be offered a regular columnist role.
So whether a business or personal brand, it is important to create a Facebook marketing strategy if you want to remain in front of your target audience. Whether it be subtly boosting blog articles to display in the news feed and drive traffic to your website, or using retargeting advertising, there is one thing for sure – you will need to ‘pay to play’.
Why play with Facebook marketing over other advertising platforms?
Because it can’t be ignored that Facebook is the one social network that everyone habitually checks on average 5 times a day. It is still cheaper than promoting a sales or opt in page in Google, and it is still more cost effective than paying for any other form of advertising – digital, radio, print or TV, and it is currently connected to the most popular visual social network – Instagram. So to invest in building an email database, Facebook IS still the most cost effective way to reach your most targeted relevant audience.
The question here isn’t do you boycott using Facebook because they won’t let you use their business platform to promote your business freely anymore. The question every business owner needs to ask themselves, is how well are they investing time and money marketing their business on Facebook to grow their business by doing 3 things: expanding brand awareness, attracting new clients and increasing sales.