Are you wondering if your business needs to be on Facebook? Maybe you set something up a year ago but then let it slide because it wasn’t working for you. Let’s face it, not every business needs to be on Facebook and many businesses do very well without it. Here are three compelling reasons why you don’t need a Facebook Business Page.
1. You don’t have the skills and knowledge to make it work.
Just like any other piece of software Facebook takes a little getting used to. In fact I know quite a number of business owners who stay as far away from business software as they can, leaving it to someone else in the office to handle… “so they can focus on the real work”. Does that sound like you?
If it does I want you to stop for a moment and redefine your thinking.
If you can write an email you can use Facebook. It’s really as simple as that. True, if you want to get right into the nitty-gritty of analytics, reporting, scheduling and power-editing advertisements there’s a bit more to it but the basics of using Facebook are rather simple. So if you’re feeling as though you’re a bit of a neophyte when it comes to technology, it still shouldn’t be a barrier to learning how to use Facebook.
However, if you’re still feeling a little dubious about stepping aboard the Facebook train consider the following options:
- Do a quick course on how to use Facebook. You could look at the Facebook for Business course on this website which is designed for business owners who’ve never used Facebook in their life, or you can find lots of other options out there. This could bring you up to speed pretty quickly.
- Delegate Facebook to another staff (or family) member to look after. If this appeals, I urge you to consider what you want to achieve and to create a simple strategy that is followed by your staff.
- Hire a social media manager to look after your Facebook Business Page for you. Maybe you want them to help build a campaign in advance of a particular product launch or event, or maybe you’re looking for someone more permanently. Either way, there are lots of people out there who offer this service.
2. Your customers aren’t on Facebook.
No one needs to tell you that the trick to good marketing is making sure your message gets in front of the right people. Correct? And if your potential clients aren’t on Facebook then there’s really no reason to promote your business there! Simple.
However, when you look at the statistics, you’d have to try pretty hard to convince me that this is the case for you.
In February 2014 Facebook turned 10yrs old. Despite starting as a way to connect students Facebook has grown to a global following of around 1.23 billion monthly users (eg, people who log in at least once per month). This is about one-sixth of the world’s population.
In Australia alone approximately 9 million people use Facebook everyday, including 7.3 million who log in using a mobile phone or tablet device.
While the percentage of younger users (eg, 18-29yrs) is still the highest for Facebook, the over 55s have been taking to Facebook in droves (the US saw an 80% rise in this bracket last year).
The average adult on Facebook has 338 friends on their list and spends around 48mins a day using Facebook.
Now think of your top 5-10 customers (people who spend the most with you each month) and consider if any of them would use Facebook. My hunch, regardless of what business you’re in, is that a decent handful of them would.
But that’s just an educated hunch, albeit a pretty strong one. I suggest you take those top 5-10 customers and ask them the following question:
If my business started sharing hints & tips, or answering questions from people like yourself on Facebook, would you be interested in following our Page?
I think the answer will surprise you.
3. You don’t have any great content to give your customers.
You don’t have any information to share on Facebook? This is generally the biggest roadblock to businesses starting their Facebook Business Page and it’s absolute baloney. The issue is not knowing what your customers want to hear. In fact, if I surveyed your customers for you and gave you a list of 10 burning questions that they wanted the answers to you would fall over yourself in a rush to answer them, right?
If you Googled “what content to post on Facebook” you would get hundreds of lists of ideas. Some would be great. Some would be not. None of them would be compiled exactly for your audience though.
My best advice is to ask your audience. There’s lots of ways that you can do this. You could:
- Keep a notebook next to your desk phone and write down every question you’re asked over the course of a month.
- Send out a little survey when you mail our next months accounts asking “if I could answer 3 questions for you, what would they be”.
- Doing a straw poll of random customers one day when they walk into the shop. Or
- Setting up a quick competition – “write down a question you want answered and pop it in the barrel to win a free pair of gumboots!”.
There’s so many more ways that you discover what your customers are aching to hear about and I’m sure that before too long you’ll have more questions that you have time to answer.
What do you do with all these questions? In short, set yourself a schedule to answer one or two each week on Facebook. Before too long your existing customers will realise how much of an authority you are in this area and people you didn’t previously have any connection with may start seeking you out to do business with you. In other words, you’ll grow deeper and new connections with potential customers, and this can only be a good thing.
Now there’s a little more to it than that, and I cover this and much more in the Facebook for Business Course, but I think you get the essence of it.
In the end, using Facebook as a tool to market your business is completely up to you. Maybe you’ve realised that Facebook just isn’t for you, if so congratulations. The last thing I want is to suggest that you waste your time and energy on a fruitless pursuit. But maybe you’ve realised that some of the reservations you had about Facebook are actually really easy to overcome. I suspect this is more likely the case.
Either way, leave a comment below. I’d love to hear if you have any other reservations about using Facebook, or if you’re now eager to jump on in.