Why exactly should you have one?
The reasons are many why you should have an agency Facebook page working for you even if you do not have a Facebook account, so many in fact that the question probably deserves its very own article. Briefly, however, I’ll give you 750 million reasons plus 5 more just to start this conversation off:
#1 through #750,000,000 – Facebook topped 750 million users last month; if Facebook was a country it would be the third most populous, below China and India and above the United States.
#750,000,001 – A visitor does not have to have a Facebook account to visit and view your company page.
#750,000,002 – A Facebook page has GREAT search engine optimization benefits and rank highly if handled correctly.
#750,000,003 – Consumer interaction. Engage potential customers in 2-way communication without the psychological sales barriers people put up when shopping for a service provider.
#750,000,004 – Brand identity and name recognition. iModerate Research Technologies’ research indicates that 60% of Facebook Page fans “are more likely to recommend those brands since becoming a member. And an impressive 51% of Facebook members are more likely to buy the brands who’s Facebook Page they are a member of.”
#750,000,005 – It’s completely FREE to host a Facebook page. Many companies are actually foregoing a company website in favor of a very well constructed Facebook. You are getting all of the above named benefits for free if you build and manage the page on your own.
And there’s the rub… doing it yourself takes time and expertise to develop that page into an effective marketing tool and online presence, but as I said before, there are many other obvious, and not so obvious, reasons to set up a Facebook page for your private investigation agency!
Let’s say you’re ready to make a go if it though and you get the page looking great and it clearly conveys the message that will convert fans into evangelists and prospects into clients. The first question is “How do I get people to ‘like’ my Facebook page now?”
First, watch this video (hopefully you learn something), then we’ll get into the REAL methods used to attract and engage your page visitors in a way almost guaranteeing that they will “like” your page and come back time and again.
Here are 15 ways you can begin to add “likes” (and visitors, i.e. prospective customers) to your page right now:
- If you have a Facebook account, start with inviting your friends and family members to like the page.
- Post status updates, links to interesting articles, photos, videos and poll questions two (2) times daily. Ask your fans to share your posts with their networks of friends and family.
- When you get 25 “likes” you will have the opportunity to get a shortened URL for your page. Choose this URL wisely! Once it is set, you cannot change it and the difference between a good choice and a bad choice can hurt your search engine ranking, which is one way of attracting more visitors to your site.
- Include your new custom URL in your email signature and on your business cards.
- Include a Facebook icon, hyper-linked to your Facebook page, on your website (if you have a website).
- Include a “Facebook Like Box” on your website (if you have one).
- Try Facebook advertising. It can be ridiculously inexpensive and have laser-like targeting capabilities ensuring that you are paying for ads that are meant for your ideal client. Target by location, interests, groups, company, employer, occupation, age, gender, etc., or any combination thereof!
- “Use Facebook as your page” to visit, like and comment on other, appropriate, Facebook pages. DO NOT SPAM PAGES or risk being banned by the page’s administrator and eventually by Facebook.
- Link your Facebook page to a Twitter account. Facebook pages can upload posts automatically to Twitter, which is great for viral traffic.
- Use the “Featured Pages” display on your page to gain mutual partnerships with other page owners that target your same ideal customer demographics.
- Use “Facebook Events” to host virtual gatherings, meet-ups, product and service launches, or as a viral press release.
- Upload and post agency commercials… use video to engage your fans!
- Give genuine and meaningful discounts on your services or product offerings. Take a cue from Groupon: 10% is not a discount… 50% is a discount worth getting excited over.
- Use the “Insights” feature, an easy to understand analytics function, of your investigation agency’s page to see what’s working and what’s not. “Learn from history or be doomed to repeat it!”
- MOST IMPORTANTLY– Post original KILLER content that you have either developed or have found from the Internet on your own. If a fan is also a member of several other pages where you are finding content, why does that fan have to “like” your page when they are just going to see the same stories and information from someone else?
BONUS TIP: If your content is more about you than your fans, they will FLEE your page because no one wants to be blasted by sales messages. Think 90% fan interest content and 10% well-crafted marketing message and you should be safe.
There is a really great new agency page for a Private Investigator in Costa Rica who I think is doing about 95% of all the right things and his number of likes is rising steadily as a result. The only thing I might suggest right now is to add a “Welcome” tab (a “Fan Gate”) with the promise of a free giveaway in return for the visitor to “like” his page. It’s a great looking site, well optimized and filled out completely. Check it out at http://www.facebook.com/PrivateInvestigatorInCostaRica
There really is so much more to discuss if you want to turn your Facebook page into the marketing weapon it has the potential to become… “don’t worry about the number of fans but the quality,” gamification, EdgeRank and newsfeed optimization, Fan-gating and reveal tabs, add-on apps, etc.
Suffice it to say, if you simply follow the rule of building a good looking, functional basic page, keep the content fresh and original and you will definitely see the major benefits behind a solid social media marketing campaign. Social Media, Facebook in particular, is really pulling well for my own agency as well as the others I am currently mentoring.
Want to learn A LOT MORE about Marketing your agency on the web and via social media? Check out http://www.facebook.com/PIMarketing