Clients often come to us with no social media presence at all. So from the ground up, we build Facebook Pages, Twitter accounts, Google Plus profiles, and more. Every social media campaign has to start somewhere. While simply being present on social media outlets is important, building your audience is vital to looking trustworthy and professional to others who come across your profiles. We’ll be specifically discussing Facebook profiles here, but many of these same ideas apply to other social platforms.

Myth: Good Content is Enough to Build a Following

The biggest misconception that we often run into is that social media should be responsible for generating an audience all on its own and that good content will have people crawling over each other to ‘Like’ your page. It’s true that content is extremely important to attracting and keeping followers, but content alone can’t bring an audience to a page that they don’t even know exists.

It’s crucial in the beginning to reach out to your employees, friends, and family to build a base following for your profiles. Their new ‘Likes’ will then show up on their newsfeeds for all of their friends to see. This is an easy way to increase your reach and for potential customers to come check out your page.

Unlocking the Facebook Admin Dashboard with Likes

One thing a lot of people don’t realize is that it takes at least 30 ‘Likes’ on your Facebook page to unlock the admin dashboard, which shows you analytics related to what’s happening on your profile. This will show you page views, help you know what content is working, and reveal the demographics of your fans. Here’s a look at some of the info you’ll find in the dashboard:

Facebook Dashboard

The admin dashboard will also show you information about:

  • Total likes
  • Friends of fans
  • People talking about this
  • Weekly total reach
  • Each individual post and its reach
  • Virality
  • % male and female
  • Countries and cities of the audience
  • Language they speak
  • Page views per day
  • And more

While asking friends, family, and employees to ‘Like’ your page is an excellent starting point to build your audience, it’s just the beginning. There are many other ways that you should be supporting your online efforts with some offline marketing to build up your social media following.

Ideas to Grow Your Social Media Following Offline

Again, it’s not enough simply to have a Facebook page. You need to drive traffic to it and increase likes to be seen as trustworthy and professional. It is critical that your social media profiles are linked from your website. Beyond that, I have several ideas to share with you on how to increase your audience using offline marketing tactics:

  • Placing your Facebook Page URL on your receipts with a message that encourages people to follow you there for up-to-date info on your business.
  • Creating flyers that you can display on your counters or registers that includes the URLs to all of your social media profiles. Restaurants should feature this info on their menu.
  • Place the logos of the social media outlets that you use on your business collateral to let people know they can find you online.
  • Promote your online promotions with in-store signage. For example, ‘Like’ us on Facebook for 20% off [insert product or service here].

Social Media Logos

Overall, social media should be something that is fun to do. It is important to be active on social media even if you think your activity does not drive bottom line results. The numbers show that social media is, in some way, growing your business.

  • 67% of B2C companies and 41% of B2B companies have acquired a customer from Facebook
  • Companies that use Twitter average 2x more leads than those that don’t
  • 45% of marketers note social media has a below average cost-per-lead compared to other channels

Go out there and have fun with your social media. It will be contagious.