Facebook pages are not worthless for small businesses!

A lot of businesses have a difficult time getting people to ‘Like’ the business on Facebook. I have a theory that this is partially because smaller businesses don’t know how to mine the full potential of Facebook pages because they aren’t very familiar with them (yet). As a result, I come across a lot of small businesses‘ Facebook pages do not offer more than a brief description of the business and some photos on the Facebook page.

Come on!

The Facebook page should be used to ask questions, post giveaways, promotions and other things that are interesting and inspirational like simple quotes, photos and websites. Having interesting content on the Facebook page gives people a reason to ‘Like’ the page, and as long as the content is consistent and good quality, they don’t have a reason to ‘Unlike’ the page. The most successful Facebook pages I have seen and follow are the ones that post maybe once a day, don’t always come up in my feed, and have contests that reward people.

An example of a popular small business’ Facebook page would be my favourite radio station in Vancouver – 100.5 The Peak. In case you’re interested in checking out their Facebook page, here it is: https://www.facebook.com/thepeak

Let’s do a mini case study on The Peak’s Facebook page and find out what their success factors are, shall we? Here we go!

3 things that small businesses can apply to their Facebook pages

1. They post regularly. The Peak’s page is not something people ‘Like’ on a whim and then forget about it – they come up in my newsfeed maybe once a day, so it’s not annoying but it does keep them floating around my mind.

2. They don’t just talk about themselves. The Peak posts links to funny pictures they come across on the Internet, links to recent interviews, cool things to do in Vancouver, etc. Having them on my newsfeed is not too different from having one of my musically obsessed friends, and their content is consistently funny and/or informative.

3. They interact with people online. A Facebook page isn’t a one-way conversation! I really appreciate when they post general questions and get their fans to respond, but they also answer questions that fans post on their wall! For some reason, there are a lot of businesses on both Twitter and Facebook that throw that rule of common courtesy, answer the questions people ask you, out the proverbial window. If a business is too busy to respond to every question, that is a different matter. But small businesses need to stay on top of the online interactions coming their way.

So what are the benefits of having a Facebook page, anyway?

Well, according to this article (http://www.fastcompany.com/1816982/dear-local-businesses-your-facebook-page-is-absolutely-worthless) they are only good for a place for customers to locate you, and post questions and complaints for you to address. I understand the point of view that the objective of Facebook pages is to generate talk about your business, rather than broadcast what you think of your business. But I think one of the biggest benefits of having a Facebook page is to have your business floating around people’s minds. When I think of local Vancouver radio stations, my first thought goes to The Peak automatically because I see their name more often than I see any others.

And besides, having a Facebook page and posting interesting content is one way to drum up talk about your business. People can respond to comments, questions or give their opinion or recent experiences of the business if they choose to. As the old saying goes, any publicity is good publicity. And by having another method to interact with your business, customers will be more inclined to stay loyal to businesses that take what they have to say seriously.

Oh, and this is in addition for the search engine optimization benefits that being listed as a Facebook page offers.

What Facebook pages have you Liked? And why do you still Like them? I’d love to hear some thoughts on this 🙂

– Shiv 🙂

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