November 20/27, 2017: Volume 32, Issue 12
By Jim Augustus Armstrong
“We paid a company to do Facebook posts for us and the results have been terrible,” the owner of four flooring stores recently told me. “We’ve pretty much given up on Facebook marketing.”
I’ve heard similar comments from a number of dealers frustrated with their results from Facebook marketing. This isn’t because Facebook can’t be very profitable for your business. It’s because many dealers are making common mistakes that hurt their results. One of the biggest is doing the wrong kinds of posts. Most dealers simply post photos of products, display racks or special offers with no thought-out plan for systematically generating business from this platform. Your posts must fit into an overall plan for generating customers, and each post should do one of three very specific tasks to make that happen. Let’s take a closer look.
Attract followers. Followers are the “herd” of people who have liked your page. If you don’t have many followers then your first task is to attract them. However, you must grow the right herd. If you attract followers who aren’t interested in your product, then you are wasting your time and money.
One effective way to attract new followers is with a contest. Facebook users love contests, quizzes and other forms of entertainment on the social media site. Pick the right prize and format and your contest can get good engagement. Make sure your prize is related to what you sell, like an area rug or floor cleaning kit. If you give away iPads or televisions you’ll attract followers, but they might not be interested in flooring. Running contests on a regular basis as part of your overall Facebook marketing system ensures you have an ever-growing, engaged base of followers.
Create engagement. Interaction on Facebook means likes, shares or comments. If your posts aren’t getting much engagement Facebook’s algorithms will penalize your posts, making them visible to fewer people. Text-heavy posts tend to get the least engagement. Product photos or display racks don’t get great engagement either. Photos of happy customers standing on their new floors with the caption, “Let’s congratulate Suzy Smith on her new floors by liking this post” can get great engagement, especially if you tag your customer so the post shows up on her timeline. Now her friends will see it and want to congratulate her, thus creating engagement and even attracting new followers to your page.
Get people off Facebook and into your store and/or database. You’ll hear a lot about attracting followers and creating engagement in social media seminars, but often you won’t hear much on getting Facebook users to come into your store and buy. This is unfortunate because unless Facebook generates customers you’re wasting your time, energy and money.
People don’t generally buy big-ticket items on Facebook, so you must get them off Facebook and into your store or database so you can market directly to them via email.
If you have any questions or if you’d like me to evaluate your Facebook page and give you tips on how to improve your results, email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Jim Armstrong specializes in providing turnkey marketing strategies for flooring retailers. For a free copy of his latest book, “How Floor Dealers Can Beat the Boxes Online,” visit BeatTheBoxesOnline.com.