Using Facebook to Further Promote Your Shop Business

| Wednesday, November 24th, 2010 | No Comments »

So you’ve got yourself a Facebook page for your shop business and have updated it with comments, photos, links etc. So what do you do now? Just sit back and wait for the fans to come streaming in? Like all websites your Facebook page can be improved upon and successfully marketed with just a little more effort.

Now that you know your way around Facebook a little more it’s time to change up a gear and make your Facebook page a successful marketing tool that brings in more business.

Log onto your Facebook page now and take a good look at what you see. Ideally your page should feature all of these:

  • Links to your blog (if you have one)
  • Links to useful and relevant articles
  • Photos
  • Lively discussions
  • Promotions

If you have a blog page about new products coming in or just what it’s like to run a shop business, then you may want to link this to your Facebook so that users can see your latest blog posts on your wall.

Relevant and useful content, even if it isn’t yours, will create a more interesting and informative page. So for instance if you have a shop selling gadgets and you come across an article on the Top Ten Gadgets Of All Time, linking to it will make for interesting reading and help cement your site as an authority on gadgets. The trick is to create an interesting page that people will ‘Like’ and share amongst their friends.

Here are some tips to keep your Facebook page looking fresh and unique:

  • Photos/Videos: You could encourage fans to upload pictures of your products, such as your wedding cake on their big day, or one of your ballgowns being worn to a high school prom. Even if you don’t sell a product, taking pictures of your shop and your staff will help the user to feel connected to your business.

You could shoot a video of a member of your sales team (or yourself) in your shop showing off your products and show how they are used or what goes on behind the scenes.

  • FBML: This stands for Facebook Markup Language and it can be used to create a custom page, like a websites home page, for your Facebook. If you shy away from codes, no matter how simple they are, then get someone to do this for you, even if you have to pay them – it’s worth it. See this FBML tutorial for an easy guide on using it. You can then take a screenshot of the homepage on your website, save it on an online site such as Photobucket and then enter the HTML code in your FBML application. Change the target URL address to your own website address and then your custom page will look like, and link to, your home website. For a good example of the landing page being used to its full extent take a look at leatherandbags. You can also change the name of the tab as LeatherandBags have done to ‘Welcome’, ‘Home’ or the name of your shop (so long as it’s a short name).
  • Facebook Questions. This is a new application not yet in the UK – but watch this space – that allows Facebook to join the ranks of Yahoo and LinkedIn whereby users can ask and answer relevant questions to boost their networking ability. You can browse through questions asked and answer them as a business. This allows anyone reading your answer to visit your Facebook page and not your personal profile. Questions and answers are rated by users and are visible to everyone. Facebook are currently working to ensure that questions also come up on your wall.
  • Landing Page. You can now choose which page people view when they come across your Facebook page. Most Facebook accounts have the landing page set as the Wall by default. If you go into Wall Settings and click on edit you can change the landing page to your new custom page. Now whenever a new user visits your page for the first time they will be directed straight to this page.

The main rule of thumb here is to keep marketing your Facebook page, keep it looking relevant and updated and converse with your customers as much as possible. Once you have an active wall you can start adding discussions by asking relevant questions such as: “What are your memories of your wedding cake?” or “Suggestions for a Mother’s Day gift!” Once you enable users to feel a part of your Facebook they will keep coming back and recommending you to their friends.

Keep updating your page every day, a neglected Facebook page will not attract any new fans as most people will assume that it is redundant.

Use the same personal touch with users on Facebook as you would to a new customer who’s just walked through the door. Pay attention to your spelling and grammar to keep your page looking professional (this is not a site for teenagers to text speak each other) and just talk to your users, even if it’s just asking what they are planning for the weekend. This personal touch speaks volumes about your service and it’s what will set your Facebook page apart from the rest.

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