How to Drive Engagement on Facebook Without Paid Ads
Most marketing professionals are well aware of the ins and outs of Facebook advertising and how useful it can be for generating leads. However, paid ads are far from the only way Facebook can help boost business and improve brand awareness. While having a motivated customer click on a paid ad and then immediately make a purchase is an ideal scenario, in most cases, playing the long game will work in your favor. Developing a loyal following of users who are active on your social media sites not only increases the chances of purchase conversions but also brings others into the mix, creating an ever-widening circle of influence. Here are just a few ways of directing your Facebook marketing strategy to promote engagement, as well as direct sales, to produce a more well-rounded space, and a deeper pool of prospects.
The Facebook Insights tool allows you to learn more about your users and figure out exactly which content appeals to which segments of your audience. Adapting your strategies on an ongoing basis in reaction to the results you see on Insights can help you constantly improve your results and target specific users. This can also be used to guide the amount and timing of your posts.
Ask and Answer
People love to share what they know. Your social media engagement really takes off when you are able to inspire discussion and debate, plus have it take place in your space. Asking questions is a great place to start as it entices people to offer their opinions, which then leads to agreement or debate and, therefore, further activity. Promptly and thoroughly answering any questions posed by users is crucial too. This establishes you as a resource for future queries and adds to the overall discussion.
As Page Vandiver, founder and CEO of Simply Heaven Design, explains, “Ask questions to your followers. Ever had a friend that only talked about themselves? How long did that relationship last? … Follow the same principle with your page to get engagement. The world isn’t looking for one man on a platform to follow. They’re looking for a community experience. People don’t just want to listen; they also want to contribute and be heard. Because of the fragmentation of media and niche audiences, everyone has something valuable – an insight, a connection, a resource to offer. No matter what your niche – coaching, eCom, or real estate, find ways to ask questions to your followers. Don’t pretend that you know everything… As a leader or page host, be vulnerable and ask for what you need or questions to get to know your followers. Also, remember that Facebook as a system is designed to promote content that gets the most engagement… Comments are a huge part of that.”
Along the same lines, focusing on content that promotes further action increases the likelihood of a user getting involved in your online community. Popular tools include:
These tools will not only add some variety to your usual content and posts, but also generate engagement.
The fastest-growing segment of social media outreach, videos are becoming an essential tool for any business. Marco Hernandez of Kaizen Social describes how existing content can be used as well.
“Move your content to video, users spend less time reading today than they did before. Revisit all those blog posts and ‘video-ize’ them. Consumers on Facebook are hungry to watch videos that educate them on topics.”
There are endless statistics that illustrate the importance of video in marketing, but consider this one in particular: 92% of mobile video consumers share videos with others.
Because of this, videos can increase overall engagement and boost your social media audience. Whether the videos are informative, entertaining or even promotional, including video as part of your strategy opens up your reach to an entirely new – and rapidly growing – demographic.
As Jide Alufa of Sophiads tells us, “Organic posts and content are the keys to drive more engagement but Facebook groups are the door… creating a group is an easy way to drive engagement and identify your market, with one added benefit; you can narrow your focus to your audience in the group instead of posting the same content at 1000 places. A Facebook group is what good soil is to a farmer, plant your content seeds, and watch your audience grow.”
When people join Facebook groups, it generally means they have more than a passing interest in the group’s focus. Finding people willing to be part of an interactive group provides a captive audience for whatever content drew them in the first place. This means you already know what they are interested in and have them right there in this nice, tidy online space to be used as a core piece of your marketing strategy.
Having a lot of followers is one thing, but having those followers actively engaging on your pages can increase your reach exponentially. Every like, comment or share expands your network and makes it more likely your product ends up in front of a member of your target audience. Keeping your site current, interesting, and unique will ensure you get the most out of your following.