Facebook tips for small business

Facebook can be a fantastic marketing tool for small businesses. Around 40 million small businesses have a profile on Facebook and in recent years, changes have improved how these businesses use Facebook to reach both a local and a global audience.

To help you get the most out Facebook for your small business, we have put together some tips to boost your reach and engagement.

Get the basics right

Setting up your Facebook page or profile correctly means that it is easier for people to find your business.

Try to include as much information as possible on your page or profile. As a minimum, you should include your business address, telephone number, website url, email address, opening hours and a paragraph that succinctly describes your business. You can also link your other social media accounts and even a newsletter subscription to your page.

It’s also important to use profile and cover images that clearly reflect what your business is about. For instance, if you are jewellery design, include images of your designs. Be sure to make sure your images are high quality and the right size. You can find more information about the best size for images on Facebook and all social media here.

Be visual

Facebook is a visual social media platform. Posts that contain images achieve better results than those that don’t. To help your posts stand out from others in the news feed, use imagery that is eye catching; brightly coloured and clear. This doesn't have to mean photos; you could try sharing quotes, memes or even graphics. Be creative as you like with the imagery and use your branding and logo wherever you can in case your images get shared. This way people who are new to your brand can easily find and remember you. If you are stuck for ideas or how to create images, Canva has several templates that you can edit to create your own image gallery.

Video content is also growing in popularity on Facebook and it can help Facebook users quickly feel a connection to your business or brand. “Behind the scenes” videos are a great way to give people an insight into your business that make you seem more human, relatable and therefore approachable.

Show some personality

Give your business credibility and personality on Facebook by posting updates that are related to your industry, like what’s new at your company and where possible, include mentions of people like your employees, or even your clients or customers. It’s also great to share posts that show your company at work, but without these updates being promotional or sales pitches. For example, if you run a café, share a video of one of your baristas making “latte art”, or if you’re a gym or sports centre, publish photos of people working out and reaching new goals.

Be sure to ask people’s permission before you share photos of them. In doing so you may also find they are happy to be tagged in them, and this then increases the reach of your post.

Post regularly

A lot of new content is shared on Facebook every day, so as well as making your posts stand out, you may have to post regularly to maintain engagement with those who follow you.

It is recommended that you post content daily on Facebook, but the good news is that it doesn’t seem to matter what time of day you post, though you can play around with timings to see if it affects reach and engagement (i.e. number of likes and shares). This can become time-consuming and you may forget to do it. Using a scheduling tool such as Hootsuite or Buffer allows you to schedule posts in advance so you don’t have to log in and do it every day.

Give your content a helping hand

It’s clear that there is a lot of competition on Facebook for small businesses to get their content seen. Facebook provides additional paid for methods that you can use to increase the number of people who see your posts. The two options are; boosting posts or running Facebook adverts.

Both methods will ensure that your post is seen by a greater audience. However, running a Facebook advert gives you greater options when it comes to who sees your post. With Facebook advertising, you can specify things like; age, gender, location, occupation, interests – of the people you want to reach. This level of segmentation is not available with ‘boosting’, and could really help you reach your target market more effectively.

About the author

Emma Saldanha is a content creator here at Findmyshift. Emma has more than 10 years experience in content creation, marketing and PR. In between writing for Findmyshift, Emma writes marketing and branding advice for small to medium business on her blog, writtenbyems. Connect with Emma on Twitter and Facebook.