Facebook – beginners information for your business

I’m still seeing it constantly – small business owners, struggling to know the basics of Facebook.  So here are the things that you MUST know to get started.  From here, just take it steady and slow – you can’t learn it all in 5 minutes, just do it bit by bit.

Profile

Your profile is your PERSONAL page.

Facebook doesn’t like you having a fake one for your business, as that is a way around it’s rules.  You can create a new profile that is more business orientated, but why bother honestly?  If you’ve been ‘misbehaving’ on Facebook, stop, because it will affect your business.  Nothing on social media is secret!  You can change the privacy of each post, but I don’t have time for that.

Some people don’t like to show anything about their business to their friends.  Why?  Friends aren’t as supportive sometimes as you might like them to be.  But if they have a choice of using another company or you, wouldn’t it be better if they use you?

I’m shocked how many business owners haven’t posted anything on their timeline about their business.

But, be discerning – don’t over do it either, otherwise people will get bored and tune out or unfollow you.

Be careful to set your privacy settings.  I only share my information with friends, but my profile is public.  See the picture below for the location of the privacy settings.

Page

This is your business page.  It is where you post stuff about your business and go live.  Then you share it to your profile or group if relevant.

You can invite friends to like your page – I do this about once every 6 months.

You can create events on your page – this is helpful if you run courses or do workshops.

Create a pinned post at the top of your page, with your key piece of information or event.  For example when I’m running a free course, the information will be pinned there, so that people don’t get confused when seeing lots of other posts about it without the join up info.

Fill in the about information – check contact details, location and description.  Include everything you do – otherwise they may never find out.

 

Group

A group is a community, where you can interact with your clients more.  This may or may not be relevant to your business to create.  For instance, it might not be useful for a clothes shop, but would be for a coach.

Create a post with the ‘rules’ for how your group will run and pin it, so that it is always displayed at the top of the group.  E.g. can other people post about their business?

Add a description about yourself and the group, so that people who join know what it is about – so many people don’t do this and lose community members because of it.

Set the privacy settings – normally to ‘closed’ – so that no one outside can see what is written in there.

Link it to your page.

Do NOT add people into your group without asking them – this really upsets them.

Do NOT tag everyone in the group overtime you post – this really upsets them!

Some people choose particular days or times of the day to interact in their groups and reply to comments, as otherwise it can be overwhelming to reply straight away to loads of comments through out the day.

Other Groups

Read the description.  Read the pinned post.  Follow the rules.

Interact with others and be helpful before you post your stuff.

Don’t put an ‘F’ or ‘.’ as a comment, so that you can see other peoples comments.  Instead click on the 3 dots in the top right hand corner and ‘Turn on notifications for the post’ (see photo above).

Please check the files for information that has been created especially for you – if you are in a group for information, the most likely thing is that FAQ’s have been written up.

When asking a question go to the [search] function first and see if it has already been asked.  How much effort do you think someone will put into asking your about the latest lash product for instance, if someone else asked the same 3hrs earlier?

Be polite – say please and thank you.

Don’t read it if you don’t want to.

STEP AWAY – you are being judged on your behaviour in a group, there is no need to argue or convince other people that you are right.

Nothing is ever completely private or safe – don’t post if there would be a problem if someone copied your post and shared it elsewhere.  There are nasty people on Facebook who will do that.  Don’t be one of those people!

Personal Friends

As I’m running a business I’m careful on Facebook.  If someone is annoying I ‘unfollow’ them.  I hardly ever unfriend or block.  I only unfriend when I find people have been basically watching me for a year, but never interacted.

Time Line

Your timeline is your personal updates on what is going on in facebook land.  First come your memories from before, then the page updates from any pages that you set notifications to ‘first’.  Then there will be updates from friends.  NOT all friends – just the ones you’ve been interacting with recently.

Stories

Stories are relatively new, and Facebook really wants them to grow, so if you use stories, you will get more traffic.  You can have stories on your personal profile or your business page – I just stick to using them on my page.

Stories only stay for 24hrs.  So what’s the point you might say?  Stories are in my opinion a useful way to share stuff personally about you, so that potential clients can get a feel for you, without cluttering up your page.

So I might share something silly that happened, a picture of a dog, a piece of music that cheered me up.  I actually do it on Instagram and then share to my facebook page – so it’s fine to have repeats.

Facebook Lives

Facebook loves video.  If you do a facebook live, it will be seen more than a post – it’s just in the facebook ‘algorithm’ as they call it.

I know it’s a bit scary, but once you’ve done a few, you will get more comfortable.  You can do them on your stories for a while if you like, so that they don’t last.  Or find a supportive group and practice in there first, before going live on your post.

They don’t have to be perfect.  You can have notes.  Plus you can practice them beforehand if you want to.  But please smile and breathe!

It’s just about giving your clients or potential clients a chance to get a feel for you.

Facebook Adverts

It is possible to get people to like your page and set notifications to first so they always see your posts.  But generally other wise you will only reach a certain number of people with your page.

Inevitably you will need to do an advert.  The recommended thing is NOT to ‘Boost’ your post, but use the ‘Ads Manager’ instead – I find the phone app easier to use for some reason.

Do NOT do an advert for likes – generally people end up with useless people in countries that are not useful for them, it seems a little dodgy.  Instead, do an advert on a facebook live that you have already had good interaction with, so you know it’s popular.

Hacks & Viruses

It’s unwise to get involved in chain messages or chain Facebook posts – they just fill up timelines with repetition and are like a virus because they take up space.

It’s unlikely the message saying ‘THIS IS TRUE’, or asking you to share and copy to your timeline to warn everyone about something catastrophic is real.  Check Snopes.com for updates on hoaxes.

Don’t click on links from people you don’t know.

Don’t add a Facebook friend again when you are already friends with them – it’s likely not them.

The cute girl/soldier who just added you, who has no mutual friends to you, is likely not a real person.

Generally

The most important thing is to remember, that just because it’s online doesn’t mean you don’t have to work at creating relationships.  Think of your posts on social media as a conversation – are you being boring?  Are you only posting about what you want (more clients), or are you also sharing information, being interesting and being helpful with no agenda?

If you are selling a network marketing product, please don’t use the technique of being vague about what you do and not mentioning the company.  It is unwise, only attracts people who don’t know about network marketing (so are a bit daft), and makes you look bad.  The rest of us do know what you are trying to do!

Time Management

The biggest complaints about facebook are how it eats into our time, other people’s poor behaviour and the struggle to consistently show up.

I recommend that every now and again you look at the groups that you get notifications for and if they are not of value any more, either leave or switch notifications off, so that you don’t keep clogging up your notifications list (they will still show on your timeline if you stay in).

Do NOT waste your time disagreeing with people or arguing on there – if you have enough time to do that, honestly, I recommend you find something more important or interesting to do with your life.

Consistency has been my key issue as well, due to handling my fibromyalgia and Lyme disease.  What I tend to do is tune in to my week ahead and think about what posts I would most like to make, with some gaps for spontaneous stuff and lives.  Then I will create the posts, and schedule them onto my page or in my group.

 

To Learn More

Things change constantly in Facebook land and always will.  We never like their updates, and it can be a pain to keep up, but they like to keep improving.  They are a business, it is not bad that they need to make money.

I follow ‘Mari Smith’ on facebook – she updates us about all the important changes.  But you’ll also find that there are people running social media groups, where for a small fee, they update you and do small trainings.  Ask on your social media feed for recommendations, and I’m sure you will find someone amazing.  It might be useful if you are running a business on facebook.

In Conclusion

Take it step by step.
Don’t do anything you don’t want to & be wise, but don’t be put off by fear either, and just have a go.
Try to manage your facebook time, so that it doesn’t take over your life.
Remember it is for creating relationships – treat it just like you would walking down the street and meeting strangers/friends.

I love hearing what people think about my posts!