Collecting a large number of fans is great, but you have to decide whether you’re happy with exposure alone, or whether you want fans to become customers. Do you want your Facebook page to help you sell more products and services?
Having a lot of fans may not increase sales immediately, but it should at least increase the strength of your brand through reputation management, improved customer support, and the conversion of fans into advocates.
Over time these tactics can even grow sales!
Your initial goal, however, should be to expand your reach, provide relevant information about your business, influence potential customers, demonstrate that you have authority in your field, and engage fans.
How to start…
Invite Contacts and Friends to Become Fans
Invite your personal Facebook friends right from your business page, and shoot an email with a link to your contacts.
You will also have the option when logged in, to import your email contacts to Facebook.
Some contacts will become fans of your page, while others will ignore the request. It’s best to send the request only once; otherwise, you risk annoying potential fans. You can even make an offer or incentive to them to like you page (like an item discount, a free consultation, etc.)
Add a Facebook ‘Like’ Box
I also recommend adding a Facebook “Like” box to your website. This will allow the traffic to your website to directly connect with you socially, on Facebook.
Target a Specific Niche
After you start to grow your Facebook fan base, you can target a specific demographic. This may be the group most likely to become your fans–or you might want to focus on growing your customer base in other ways.
You will start to see who’s liking your posts and you can adjust the type of posts you do to get the most interest.
Link to Google+
Currently you can integrate a personal profile on Facebook so that your wall posts show up in Google+, but you cannot perform this procedure from a Facebook page. If you want to integrate the two, you will need to add a Google+ tab to your Facebook page. Go to the Facebook application and then to Google Plus Tab for Pages, and add the application to your page.
Plus, I’ve heard from others in the field, that Google+ is like a secret SEO weapon…you’re more likely to have website and Facebook activity if you set up and maintain a Google+ page! It can’t hurt anyways!
Perform Ongoing Maintenance
You’ll be making a big time investment up front by setting goals, creating a custom page, crafting special offers. Make sure to post links, comments, and questions to your Facebook page regularly, as well as to respond to customer concerns. Depending on your company size and resources, this effort could be weekly, daily, or even hourly. You can make this time more efficient by tracking your page’s progress through Facebook Insights.
Facebook Insights will help you determine the level of fan engagement, and it will let you know if people are discussing your posts, saying positive things about your company, or sharing your content with their Facebook friends.
Consider Facebook Ads
Advertising on Facebook can be an affordable way to increase the visibility of your business to other Facebook users. You can target each ad based on Facebook user location, demographics, and interests, and you can set a budget. For example, if Insights shows that I have a lot of visitors from Sweden, I may consider creating an ad campaign for users there. Or if most of my visitors are male, I might want to consider a campaign for female visitors in a certain age range.
Start with a small budget and determine how well your ads perform by how many new fans you get, as well as by Insights data. Once you’ve used up your budget, your ad will no longer appear until you add more funds. Ads are available via the Resources section of Facebook; go to Edit Page, Resources, Advertise on Facebook.
Article By Kim Woodbridge, PCWorld | Nov 3, 2011 6:30 PM