Top tips for small businesses on using Facebook

With over half the UK population on Facebook, for most online retailers in the UK, it’s a very effective way to raise awareness and provide key information to customers. Olivier Chameyrat, Managing Director of Pixmania-PRO, has put together some top tips and hints for getting the most out of Facebook.

1. Start conversations
By tapping into one of the most influential social networks on the internet, retailers have a fantastic opportunity to start conversations with the consumers they are trying to reach. Engaging directly with your customers on Facebook will not only increase your customers’ loyalty to your brand, it will give your company a personality and someone customers can interact with.

2. Post engaging content
Draw on experience from your own Facebook page – look at what friends of yours have engaged with the most – it will be something where you have given them a conversational springboard. Review other companies’ activity on Facebook, such as Pixmania-PRO; look at their posts and how they manage their profiles.

3. Develop relationships with your customers
Once the conversations are started with your customers, ensure that you keep them going. Constant interaction with Facebook fans who are customers can help you grow your business; by gauging their opinions and interact directly with them you have an invaluable and instant market research tool at your fingertips.

4. Use it in conjunction with existing marketing activity
While your presence on social networks like Facebook or Twitter should be an integral part of developing strong relationships with your customers, Facebook shouldn’t replace your existing marketing activity. It should be part of your overall marketing strategy. If you have an advert going out, make sure you reference your Facebook page, or include a line which says ‘like for exclusive discounts and offers’.

5. Use it for customer service
71 per cent of UK businesses, like Pixmania, use their social media channels as a way of dealing with questions or customer complaints. Customers are turning to this more and more as it means they don’t have to spend time on the phone and can easily get an answer. Queries resolved by social media channels are more likely to result in positive feedback posted to profiles and fan sites – not something you get with a phone call.

6. Push discounts exclusively through Facebook
One of the easiest ways to gain more fans is to offer exclusive discounts and offers. For example, when you hit a certain number of fans reveal a code for a 20% discount on your website. Or offer the first 10 people to ‘like’ a status a free product. This will encourage your fans to talk about your company on their profile – especially if they win.

7. Link back to your site
Make sure you embed links to your website within the content you post – customers won’t buy anything from you if they are not on your site. Check out Pixmania-PRO’s Facebook page, they showcase a new product with a picture and a link back to their site – remember, traffic not on your website is traffic not making any purchases.