Starting a social media marketing campaign can be extremely overwhelming if you're not familiar with the digital space. Just the thought of creating a company Facebook page or tweeting to your consumers can cause stress and anxiety. Last month, Mashable hooked up a few small businesses with social media experts from our Small Business Panel, to offer some mom-and-pop shops advice on how to amp up their presence on various social platforms.
We paired local salt-maker Borsari Food Company with social media marketing expert Ben Pavlovic, founding partner of VineSprout. After reviewing Borsari's social assets, Pavlovic immediately suggested that it focus its efforts on increasing its Facebook following. In order to do this, Pavlovic recommended that Borsari implement a targeted ad campaign on Facebook, include a call to action to "like" the Page in its marketing materials, create a vanity Facebook URL to boost SEO, and to change its cover photo to better reflect the brand and its product.
In one month's time, Borsari has seen an increase in its Facebook following from 133 fans to 167, and it's also seen a slight increase in Twitter followers, from 73 to 86. Additionally, when you now visit the Borsari's Facebook Page, you are welcomed by one of its store's wooden signs, and a thumbnail image that showcases one of its products. Before our makeover, the Page didn't have any cover image — and its thumbnail was of a random garden.
Although the increase in followers is modest, the changes will surely continue to increase Borsari Food Company's social presence. In an interview with Mashable, Meghan O'Keefe, the social media marketer taking over Borsari's campaigns, told us about the pay off from implementing some of Pavlovic's suggestions. "Everything is still under the process of being implemented; for example, they are waiting for their cover photos and profiles pictures to be designed — so once things like that are done, they will be able to tell. They hadn't put much effort into social media previously, so the increase in attention will definitely help and they will see improvement in the number of likes, followers and engagement immediately."
Furthermore, O'Keefe noted that the advice was easy to implement, fast, and it fit their budget — all very important factors to consider when marketing for a small business. Of course, it's not easy to create — and maintain — a Facebook strategy. It takes time and dedication, and it can be, understandably, a bit overwhelming.
If you're just getting started with your social media marketing campaign on Facebook, here are some tips for setting up your Facebook Page.
1. Customize Your Page URL
Customizing your Facebook Page URL is essential for SEO in both Google and Facebook. If your URL is a jumble of numbers, your brand won't surface when someone searches for it. Your brand also doesn't seem as legitimate without a customized URL — you take your company seriously, and your URL should always reflect that. Here are some quick steps to changing your Facebook Page URL, which can only be done once your Page has 25 or more fans.
1. Go into your "Page Settings," click on "Edit Page" and then select "Update Public Info."
2. Click on "Basic Information" in the left column, and below "Username," click on "Change Username."
3. Enter your desired vanity URL. Then click on "Check Availability" to make sure it hasn't already been taken.
4. If it is available, a box like this will appear — click on "Confirm" to finalize your URL change. Congrats!
2. Choose a Thumbnail and Cover Image That Reflects Your Brand
Consumers are constantly being inundated with stimuli, so it's crucial that your brand stands out from the masses. Choosing the thumbnail and cover images for your brand's Facebook Page is extremely important, as you want them both to quickly convey your product or service, with a bit of personality. If you create something homemade, whether it's soap or chocolate, show the product in your thumbnail image, and set your cover photo with an image that shows where you make the product — or even who makes it, which will put a face to the brand. Dimensions of the photo are 851 px by 315 px.
You want people to instantly recognize your brand and know what you offer — without having to search for it.
3. Ask People to "Like" Your Page in Marketing Materials
This is a really simple way to gain some traction for your Facebook Page. Using the Borsari Food Company as an example, they should include a business card or pamphlet that has its Facebook URL along with every product they send out. All of your marketing materials — whether they are fliers or business cards — should have links to your social media platforms, as well as the URL for your company website. This provides customers with an opportunity to learn more about your business and encourages them to engage with you and your community online.
View the full article here: http://mashable.com/2013/06/21/social-makeover-facebook/