Branding Your Business on Facebook - Utilizing Search Engines
A Beginner's Guide to Improving Online Presence
There are lots of social media platforms that are popular today, but forgetting the immense popularity of Facebook is a strategic error for any business. Instagram, Pinterest, Snap, and Twitter all have their place in any successful, comprehensive marketing plan, but Facebook is the modern day version of the Yellow Pages. Every business needs a presence there.
Billions of people around the world use Facebook every month, but few businesses truly need to target an audience that large. Your product or service may truly be an international one, or it may be limited to a small geographic area around your store or restaurant. Whatever the case, it is imperative that your Facebook content targets only the audience that best benefits your business. One way to do that is through proper use of search engines.
There are plenty of search engines, but Google handles over 80 percent of all US searches. While Yahoo, Bing, and others may be important, it is what Google wants that can make or break your online success. So, the question is obvious: what does Google want?
Google loves regular updates of new content. It loves photographs, video, audio, and user engagement. And it loves hashtags.
Creating Regular Content
When people launch a new Facebook page, they often assume there is plenty that they want to share with their potential audience. There are great products, services, ideas, etc. that seem to be topics for endless posts. What frequently happens is that social media becomes a second-thought in a short period of time. Posts drop off or become erratic. Soon your Facebook page is stale and/or out of date.
Creating new content is not just posting a new product, service, or even an upcoming sale. Those are all important, but it is essential to create an online atmosphere that is welcoming and engaging to your reader. If you are constantly hawking a new product or service, your readers will soon feel that your page is nothing more than a sales flyer. If that is your intent, great! If not, then mix it up a bit.
Key words are important, but choosing the right word is imperative. When creating your posts, think like your potential customers will think. Place words and phrases that are likely to be what a person would type into a Google search. Forget all the technical knowledge you possess about your business—you need to think like your customers.
One of my clients is Golden Corral restaurants. To create a hashtag of #HomeOfTheGoldenChoiceBuffet is counter-productive. Anyone looking for Home of the Golden Choice Buffet already knows it is Golden Corral. Instead, focus on #AllYouCanEat, or #Restaurant, or whatever term best expresses how you feel people will search for businesses or services like yours. At the same time, don't use hashtags in your posts that name your business. People who know your business name are not searching for it—they will go straight to it. Think like the person hunting for search results.
When creating your content, be sure to use the schedule feature on Facebook. This will allow you to create future content that Facebook will automatically post at the date and time you specify. Creating holiday greetings can easily be done for the whole year in one short session and scheduled to post on the appropriate day. That's one way to ensure you never miss extending holiday greetings to your customers.
Attracting search engine bots is very important to the success of sharing your content within the search results. Try uploading posts at different times each day. This keeps the bots coming back to check for new content. Many companies only upload at a specific time of day. This trains the bots to only check at that time of day.
Using hashtags is extremely important for Google. While Facebook does not identify hashtags in its search algorithms, by placing them within your posts, other search engine bots will identify and pick up on them. Don't overuse hashtags though. A few sprinkled throughout your post is all you need. You can always create other posts to pick up on different hashtags. In other words, one post does not need to cover the enormity of your operation.
Be sure to include your city, type of business, or other linking hashtag to your posts. This helps those searching for your product or service to narrow their results to include our business.
For more tips, check out my other posts in this series.