What began as a niche for eco-friendly, cotton, American-made blankets slowly offered more designs, and national sales slowly took off.
But there was one thing hindering Lott’s company from growing more: the inability to reach wide audiences. Realizing the potential of e-commerce and the downfalls of a purely traditional brick and mortar model, SpearmintLove transformed into a fully online retailer.
But none of that would have succeeded if she hadn’t invested in one crucial strategy: using Facebook.
Within a few years, SpearmintLove had nearly a million followers on its Facebook page.
To be sure, there really is never such a thing as an overnight success story, and the same is true for anything related to smart Facebook strategy. Lott spent about three years before building her brand through blogging and continued to expand and develop new product lines. It was only with this foundation, and a small but loyal following, that she was able to use Facebook to her full advantage.
In fact, for many companies, a Facebook success story can be illusionary.
- The average Facebook engagement rate for a post, across industries, is a mere 0.17%
- You might get lost in the mix: over 50 million businesses actively use Facebook
Like any other platform, Facebook will only promote your business as much as you allow it–and as much as you understand what works best for 2018 and beyond.
The 5 Best Strategies for Facebook in 2018
Keep in mind that when it comes to Facebook strategy, what works for one business might not work as well for another, or vise-versa. Still, these 5 strategies are solid things to keep in mind whether you’re just looking into promoting your business on Facebook, or you’re trying to expand or alter what you’ve already been doing.
- Establish your niche first: You can set up the best designed page in the world and still get next to no followers. While Facebook is a place to attract more followers, you can only do so if you have a clear idea of who your competitors and you your target audience is. Not sure? Facebook is actually helpful for that too–browse other competing company pages, not just to see how many “likes” they’ve accrued, but what strategies they’re using to promote your brand.
Not sure what your niche even is? Consider asking yourself these questions, suggested by Brian Edmondson of The Balance:
- What keywords are associated with your product?
- Who is this product(s)/ services useful for?
- What drew you to this business and how might also draw consumers?
- Partner up with other social media:
Facebook is the largest social media platform still, with nearly 22 billion monthly active users. But other social media can be a key strategy to Facebook success. Including links to Instagram, for instance, will connect and attract different followers, and also showcase photos in a way Facebook does not do quite as well.
- Consistency is Key
While some users don’t, think of Facebook like a blog, where users expect regular, and likely, daily content. A Facebook page featuring posts from a week ago will appear inactive and not attuned to current trends or new followers. Investing in making at least one post a day is crucial to keep your followers engaged, and making your business appear Facebook saavy.
- Have a way for followers to connect
Most public pages allow for users or even visitors to make comments on posts and engage with other users. Of course, there’s a negative side to that too: you run the risk of having less than savory comments.
That aside, there’s more, and simple things you can do to increase user engagement. Make them feel a part of the community by:
- Hosting random contests, where likes or comments will be selected for a prize or discount
- Incentives to share posts with other friends
- Opinion polls and feedback about a post, product or service
And before you host a contest, be sure to make sure you don’t make any of these common mistakes.
- Think like a Facebook User
Like and follow other pages. If your business is associated with a nonprofit cause, this is especially powerful. Share news stories or initiatives that are related to your industry. In essence, show that your business is engaged with the world around it. By doing so, you’ll be guest posting (and promoting). You’ll not only show the company’s values, but also potentially gain followers you wouldn’t have otherwise.
Facebook likes can do a number of things, like improving the familiarity of your brand and presenting your company as innovative. But being prepared and invested in the long haul is the key to Facebook strategy for 2018 and beyond.