You’ve probably seen Facebook in the news for all the wrong reasons, right? Despite this, businesses have continued spending advertising dollars on Facebook, and some businesses have even been increasing their advertising spend on the platform.
As a marketer mentions in this article about Facebook’s data-misuse scandals, they don’t see an advertising alternative that would have the same reach as Facebook.
Facebook’s user base continues to grow. The number of Facebook users worldwide has grown from about 100 million in 2008 to over 2.4 billion in 2019. And, the number of Facebook users in the United States is now over 51% of the entire population. That’s pretty healthy.
As we discussed in our articles about how magazine publishers are using Instagram and how magazine publishers are using Pinterest to grow audience and revenue, we’ve seen publishers successfully using Facebook to reach their target audiences and to add value to their print advertisers.
Reasons to use Facebook for marketing
Here are a few reasons to use Facebook as part of your marketing efforts:
- Big reach on a small budget. Facebook allows you to spread your message far and wide without spending a great deal of money. Facebook also has targeting capabilities to help you reach people who are most likely interested in your publication.
- Community building. Communication leads to community, and Facebook is a platform that, in addition to providing a platform to communicate with your audience, also provides a way for them to share your message and extend your reach.
- Facebook offers audience insights that enable you to learn more about your readers and promote your advertisers when their products and services match your audience’s needs and interests.
How to get started on Facebook
The first thing to understand is that there’s a difference between a Facebook profile and a Facebook page. You must have a personal profile to create a page for your business. The two are separate but inseparable.
Once your personal profile is set up (and chances are good you’ve already done this), you can create your business page. Then you can focus on what you want to accomplish with it.
You can use your business page for:
- eCommerce, if your business has items to sell online,
- Polling, if you want to take the pulse of your audience in an engaging way,
- Promote content, to spotlight information from your magazine, and
- Conduct live events, to engage your audience with streaming content.
The idea is to make your page a place where people come for an experience that they find engaging and that supplements your print magazine. Did you know that Facebook has a print magazine of its own? It’s a testament to our assertion that print and digital support each other.
Advertising your page on Facebook is one way to build an audience, and advertising your publication can be effective and economical. The best approach to using Facebook advertising is to consult the Guide to Facebook Ads, which provides you with a step-by-step process to maximize returns on your advertising spend.
Some tips for successful Facebook marketing
Remember, Facebook is about building a community around your brand. Consider these suggestions to market your business on Facebook:
- Establish your goal and strategy. What do you want to do? Build ad revenues by 15%? Add 10% more subscribers? How will you use Facebook to do that? What’s the best approach or combination of approaches? In other words, what is your goal and, strategically, how will you attain it?
- Don’t be pushy. Facebook isn’t like a used car commercial. It’s a place people go when they want to connect. If you push the sale too hard, you’re likely to push people away instead of drawing them in.
- Keep at it. A regular posting frequency is recommended.
- Be creative. You can share information with a trivia contest or by partnering with other organizations to create, post and share content.
- Warm it up. Again, Facebook is a conversation. Warmth and a personal approach are often best ways to connect with your audience.
- Practice patience. Don’t be discouraged if Facebook users don’t come flocking to your page right away. Keep adding content people can use. Engage people in comments. Set up loyalty programs that give users a reward for coming back.
- Excite the senses. Facebook is visual. You need lots of pictures. Use video where appropriate. Engage your visitors with interactive content, such as polls, questionnaires and contests.
- Get insights. Use Facebook Insights to learn more about the people who visit your page. Are you keeping up with their interests? Is your content relevant and engaging? Facebook’s analytics can help you answer these questions.
There’s no doubt Facebook has had its problems regarding user privacy, and public backlash and legislative action will ensure they continue to work on that. But, in so many ways, Facebook is exploring new territory and the platform remains a powerful marketing tool you can be using to grow audience and revenue.