6 ways to grow your local business using Facebook
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After talking to many businesses about their experience on Facebook, we noticed that there was a lot of misinformation out there about how to actually succeed on Facebook.
So we decided to create this article to give you some real-world examples of how some local businesses are using Facebook to grow and what strategies they’re using.
One key thing to keep in mind with Facebook is that most people who go on there don’t want to see an ad for an offer from a company they don’t even know. They go there to be entertained or educated or to catch up with friends and family.
And so the key to winning on Facebook is to use a mix of organic and paid content that first warms your audience up to your company/brand and then leads them up your value staircase.
This one shift in strategy alone could be enough to help you leapfrog your competition.
But enough of that, let’s get into the good stuff:
If you’ve built up a little fanbase on Facebook, a good way to engage them is to offer an evergreen discount – this is a discount that’s good all the time and attractive enough to get people to come into your business.
This works especially well for restaurants because when they create their post with the discount in it, they can boost that post to people who like the page and friends of people who like the page.
This has the added benefit of displaying social proof (“e.g. Frank, Mary and Robert like Fresh Kitchen”) and increasing the likelihood that the post will be clicked on and seen by potential customers.
If you want to take this to the next level and build goodwill with potential customers, you can do a behind-the-scenes video where you get a simple video of your interior on a busy night or a short interview with your line cook or some other staff member.
And what you write in the post can be simple as well, saying something like ‘Hey Orlando, tonight is karaoke night. Come on by!’ If you want to make tracking easy you can also put ‘Mention that you saw us on Facebook for 20% off’.
“If you’ve built up a little fanbase on Facebook, a good way to engage them is to offer an evergreen discount – this is a discount that’s good all the time and attractive enough to get people to come into your business.”
As a local business, the strength of your Facebook marketing relies on the quality and variety of your offers. For example, some chiropractors run ads that offer free consultations.
To get people to claim that offer, they also run a video testimonial ad which is linked to a landing page where the person has to give their phone number. If the people don’t show up, the chiropractors have their assistants follow up with phone calls.
Another strategy they use is referred to as content amplification and this is one that almost every business should be doing.
This means that they drive traffic to blog posts or content on things like sciatica or lower back pain or herniated discs, which allows them to find out who’s really interested in what they have to offer, thus lowering their remarketing costs.
Another overlooked benefit of this strategy is that the chiropractor ends up branding and positioning himself as a trusted source of valuable information, which makes potential patients much more likely to do business with him.
“As a local business, the strength of your Facebook marketing relies on the quality and variety of your offers.”
This example comes from a cosmetic dentist who has a number of practices in town. He ran ads that offered free teeth whitening for a limited time and clicking on his ad would take you to a landing page where you could opt-in for more information.
Now, you might be thinking that it’s pretty expensive to give away something like that for free, but it makes sense for the doctor because once these people come in, a certain percentage of them can be signed on for more valuable packages, thus more than recouping his ad spend and enjoying a very high return on ad spend.
The point here is to think of something that you can offer that gives your customers a compelling reason to do business with you or lowers the barrier to entry for them so that you can then upsell them on your more profitable services/products.
Are you going to get people who only come for the free stuff? Of course, that’s just how it is sometimes. But you’ll also find new lifetime customers who will become repeat buyers if you treat them well and give them a positive experience. Not to mention that they’ll also tell their friends about how much they liked you.
“The point here is to think of something that you can offer that gives your customers a compelling reason to do business with you or lowers the barrier to entry for them so that you can then upsell them on your more profitable services/products.”
Using live events
Live events are a great way to use Facebook advertising to build your customer base. If you already do events, this will be especially easy because people love great events. And it doesn’t even have to be that fancy.
Next time you have an event coming up, use Facebook to fill it so that you can get more people to come and use that audience for future remarketing.
To do this successfully, you have to make sure your event has a good ‘hook’ – this is whatever will draw people to the event and make it more likely that they’ll show up e.g. a car dealership giving away $1000 cash or a school doing an open house.
Once they come to the event, that’s where you can really do your magic and begin to build the relationship.
It’s no secret that most people hope they’ll win the lottery someday. And so using a sweepstakes or a giveaway where someone can enter to win something of great value is a guaranteed way to drum up interest in your business.
This can work great for services like plumbing, HVAC, landscaping, and cleaning etc. The issue with using Facebook for these types of businesses is that a lot of the people on there may not have intent – they’re only wanting these services at very specific times.
This means that Google Pay-per-click (PPC) will likely be the best place to start for these companies because that’s where customers are going to be searching for them.
Yet, only about 5% to 10% of people are actually going to be searching for these specific services so it begs the question of how to reach the other 90% to 95% before they start actively thinking about your service and doing thorough research. The answer is Facebook.
Offer something that your ideal customer wants (preferably something physical) but maybe wouldn’t buy for themselves. With display advertising or other social advertising, you have the opportunity to reach the people you want to reach, like homeowners with certain interests. Also, Contest Domination is a good software tool to use for generating leads through contests.
We get it. Good leads are important for your business. But so is building goodwill through valuable content. When you don’t only drive traffic to an opt-in page, but instead drive traffic to valuable content like videos or blog posts, you build a lot of engagement and goodwill for your Facebook page.
The added bonus of this strategy is that this can sometimes get you immediate leads and increase the quality of your leads. What the content does is build a foundation for your strategy and works alongside your lead generation campaigns.
This example comes from a kitchen and bath company doing kitchen and bath remodeling. They drove traffic to a blog post that showed homeowners the mistakes to avoid when deciding to remodel their kitchen. Then they coupled this with their lead gen campaign and started noticing a lot more calls. So you see, valuable content works. Period.
A great formula for success for services companies is having a goodwill campaign and a lead gen campaign that are feeding off each other. If you can, try to get a dedicated number for your FB ads so you can track it or you can simply ask people where they heard of you. For call tracking you can use something like CallRail. And of course if you collect email addresses from your customers, you can use that to create custom audiences in Facebook as well.
That’s that! Are you interested in growing your business with Facebook? If so, click the button below to claim a FREE Blueprint™ session where we’ll help you map out your complete strategy.
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If you’re looking to grow your business with Facebook, click the button below to claim your free Blueprint™ session.