Building a loyal audience for your business

Building a loyal audience for your business

One of the biggest components of growing a business organically is building an audience of loyal and raving fans. A dedicated audience should know who you are, trust the quality of content you provide, and be happy to share your brand when they hear of someone in need of your services.

Chances are, your business has competition.

Instead of focusing on what they’re doing, focus on making sure that you are the go-to and the service provider that people know and trust to do better. What better way to showcase your success and quality than by having other people support what you’re doing and cheering your name when they see someone needing help in your area of expertise.

Building that kind of loyal following isn’t as difficult as it seems, but it does take some grit, consistency, and dedication to helping others.

Here are three tips to build your fanbase, keep them engaged, and have them do some of your marketing for you:

Give more than you take

You’ve heard it a million times but I’m going to say it again for all the people in the back: Lead with value! Prove to your audience that you are a wealth of knowledge and can help them solve their problem and get on the right path. If you can help your followers, they will be thankful and come to you when they have another problem in your area of expertise. 

This is how client loyalty and brand loyalty is built. The foundation is set by delivering first and becoming a voice of authority and industry knowledge.

Reward people for their loyalty to your business

What better way to encourage brand loyalty than by rewarding it? Two factors are at play when you take this approach. First, the theory of reciprocity states that people like to do things for you when you do things for them. Second, people like to feel special and like they’re making a difference. Rewarding loyalty encourages your audience to share your content with their network and be a source of referrals when they hear of someone in need of your services. Rewards help build healthy and positive client relationships.

Be transparent and honest

This buzzword might be a no-brainer, but let’s dive into it for a second. Why would someone support something they don’t believe in or understand? By being transparent and open with your client base, they get to know your business inside and out, and most importantly what it stands for and against. If your core values align with theirs, they will be more inclined to support your enterprise—and know you’re being honest. It is important that your audience feels your business is ethical, supportive, and has integrity.

Building a loyal audience for your business means never wondering where your next client is hiding. It encourages them to build a relationship with your business, believe in your quality of service and integrity, and eagerly refer you to their sphere. Inbound leads are the easiest to convert because they come with an established sense of trust in your brand.

Looking for help taking your business to the next level with a clearly defined marketing and business strategy? Let’s set up a 20-minute consultation and get you moving in the right direction. Click here and fill out the form to get started.

Three things you need to do before running paid ads

Three things you need to do before running paid ads

It’s easy to get caught up in the hype of Facebook Ads and Google AdWords when the internet is abuzz about paid marketing success stories. A good paid ad campaign can drive targeted quality traffic to your website and convert into leads or paying clients. The caveat is you have to do it right.

With all the advertising and marketing tools in the world at your fingertips, creating a paid ad has never been easier. Gone are the days where you had to consult the advertising department of a newspaper or magazine to get your listing in their publications, now it’s as easy as a few clicks and entering your credit card number.

Because it is so easy to run an ad on social media or search engines, a lot of small business owners take the steps to boost their content without taking the big picture into consideration or having the fundamental knowledge of how to achieve high-quality results on these advertising platforms.

Here are three key steps to building a successful advertising campaign you need to know before you start:

Set a specific goal

When you create a Facebook Ad, the first step is to choose an objective. This is where you bring your goal to life (and is applicable to every other advertising platform as well). What are you trying to accomplish with your ad? You need to be specific about this. Being specific about the goal of each specific ad will help you chose your objectives and create content that is directly relevant to achieving your desired result.

 If your goal is brand awareness, you need your brand front and center in the ad content. If your goal is lead generation, you need a tasty offer and a way to capture contact information that’s easy to navigate for the person who clicks your content. Ambiguous ads do not perform well because people are not motivated to engage with content that has no direction, you need to direct them to a specific objective and make it easy to follow through.

Have systems in place

Running an ad with a pretty picture is nice, but a huge waste of money unless you direct people somewhere they learn more about what you’re offering and enter their information. This means directing people to a specific landing page or lead capture that is directly related to your advertisement. From there, you need to send an instant response or risk losing their interest entirely, website attention spans are short. 

When someone signs up for online content, they expect to have what they signed up for within seven minutes. To do this properly, you need a system in place to automate the process and track your results. Running a general non-specific ad to the front page of your website will not garnish the results you’re looking for. After you’ve captured information you need a follow up sequence ready to nurture those leads until they’re ready to pop.

Test everything

Every audience behaves differently. While you can predict behaviour based on demographics, sometimes their actions and interests are surprising. The best way to guarantee you’re getting the best results for your ad spend is by testing different types of content. Every piece of the puzzle should be tested and optimized so that you can spend the most money on the highest performing content and get the best results. 

Test everything including your landing page, follow up sequence, ad image or video, and the text descriptions. Even if your ad is performing well, make sure it couldn’t be performing better by testing your options. The more you test, the easier it is to build future campaigns that resonate with your specific audience the first time around saving you time and money.

Paid advertising is a great tool, but it is incredibly misunderstood as being so easy anyone can do it and be successful. The truth is it takes a lot of planning, testing, and hard work to get the best results and achieve the results you’re hoping for.

Looking for help taking your business to the next level with a clearly defined marketing and business strategy? Let’s set up a 30-minute consultation and get you moving in the right direction. Click here and fill out the form to get started.

Optimize your social media profiles for better business connections and growth

Optimize your social media profiles for better business connections and growth

If you use social media for your business in any capacity, it’s important that people know a few things about you and your business as soon as they click on your profile.

Social media is all about creeping. You see a post in a group, on a page, or on your friend’s wall and want to know who the people commenting are. While twenty years ago finding out a ton of information about someone without first introducing yourself was borderline stalking, it’s become the norm through social media’s easy to access information and front-page profile system. Imagine your profile as a first impression with a potential client, it has to be memorable and relatable.

The public elements of your profile can work to your advantage if you position yourself well and highlight the most important information that someone who’s never met you needs to know before connecting.

Profile picture

If your profile isn’t a picture of your face, you’re deterring more people than you can imagine. People often forget the ‘social’ part of social media. This is the biggest difference between an online message, a phone call, and a face-to-face interaction. Subconsciously, by not having a conversation with your ‘face’ your audience cannot build the same level of trust with you through the internet, even if it’s just a still photo. If you’re not showing who you are, nobody knows who they’re interacting with. It’s too easy to pretend to be someone you’re not on the internet. Give your audience something to recognize.

Cover photo

If your profile isn’t a picture of your face, you’re deterring more people than you can imagine. People often forget the ‘social’ part of social media. This is the biggest difference between an online message, a phone call, and a face-to-face interaction. Subconsciously, by not having a conversation with your ‘face’ your audience cannot build the same level of trust with you through the internet, even if it’s just a still photo. If you’re not showing who you are, nobody knows who they’re interacting with. It’s too easy to pretend to be someone you’re not on the internet. 

Short Bio

On every social media platform, there is a small space for you to create a custom introduction for your audience and anyone who visits your profile. This section usually allows for 150 characters of shameless self promotion. The best bios tell your audience what you do quickly, like an elevator pitch, in a way that entices them to want to learn more. Understanding your ideal client and their goals is the best way to craft a bio that speaks directly to their needs and wants. Don’t underestimate the power of a quick introduction and summary of how you can solve their problems.

Intro Section

Facebook added the intro section in 2016 and a huge number of people still haven’t figured out how to use these highlighted snippets of information to their advantage. Instead of sharing what college you went to and what year you joined Facebook, consider using this to showcase your business page. If you’re a locally based business trying to connect with local clients, like a real estate agent, make sure to include in this section where you service. The best way is by adding your current city. You can also include websites and featured images to introduce profile visitors to your funnel.

Optimizing your personal profiles on social media is critical to your success in creating new connections and building meaningful relationships through engaged interactions. If you want to make the most of your social media profile and use it for more than browsing dog memes, the first step is making sure your ideal client knows what you do and understands the value you provide.

Looking for help taking your business to the next level with a clearly defined marketing and business strategy? Let’s set up a 30-minute consultation and get you moving in the right direction. Click here and fill out the form to get started.

Are you boosting posts on Facebook? It’s time to stop.

Are you boosting posts on Facebook? It’s time to stop.

If you run a Facebook page, you’re probably familiar with the big blue Boost button.

Whatever you do, don’t click it.

There are over 60 million business pages on Facebook. As most of the social media giant’s revenue is driven through advertising, they implemented a tool to make it as easy as possible for business owners to input their credit card or PayPal information and boost their content to new audiences.

In theory, this is awesome: an easy two-click solution to small business’s biggest hurdle: cost-effective marketing to a targeted audience.

In reality: boosting a post on Facebook is the most expensive form of advertising on the platform with the least amount of targeting and customization options.

Yikes.

Here are five reasons you should skip boosting your posts and start building your ads through Facebook’s Ad Manager Tool:

Objectives

An objective in Facebook advertising is the outcome goal of the ad. This is where you choose what action you’d like people to take and what results you’d like to get through running your campaign. When you run a proper advertisement, you have tons of options including page likes, post likes, comments, reactions, lead generation, website traffic, conversions, and more.

Boosting only allows you to choose from two objectives: engagement and website traffic.

These options specifically target people who are either likely to comment on random posts or are click happy and enjoy opening web pages that show up in their newsfeeds. While the numbers may look nice if you aren’t used to running advertisements, they typically aren’t a relevant audience and cost more per action than creating a real ad using Facebook’s Ad Manager tool with the same objective.

Boosting only allows you to choose from two objectives: engagement and website traffic.

These options specifically target people who are either likely to comment on random posts or are click happy and enjoy opening web pages that show up in their newsfeeds. While the numbers may look nice if you aren’t used to running advertisements, they typically aren’t a relevant audience and cost more per action than creating a real ad using Facebook’s Ad Manager tool with the same objective.

Targeting

Targeting with a boosted post is incredibly limited. When you create a real ad, you have the option to target multiple audiences to compare performance and results. When you boost a post, you get to choose one specific group of people with an awkward meter telling you whether or not your audience is the right size—which, trust me, is a bullshit tool designed to increase how much you need to spend to reach the right amount of people in your chosen audience.

The purpose of this tool is to show the size of the audience you’re targeting and to encourage business owners and marketers to spend more money instead of narrowing their audience to be more relevant to their product or service. There is no right or wrong size for a Facebook audience and there is more to consider than simply your budget. It is important to consider your goals and how people respond to advertisements on Facebook.

The audience you target with your marketing is one of the most important ingredients in Facebook advertising. With so many active users, it’s important to make sure your content is only showing up to the right ones so your money isn’t wasted on people who will never convert into new business leads.

Budget

Budget is often the most important consideration for a small business looking to market their property with boosted content and Facebook advertisements. It should be the first step in determining the size of the audience you’re going to target and your end goal. Some results cost more than others and it’s important to keep that in mind when planning your campaign. For example, results from a lead ad typically cost more than a reach objective.

The budget options with Facebook’s boost tool encourage users to spend as much money in as little time as possible. This simplifies the process but gives you significantly less control over your spending.

There are three options between 1-14 days and a little calendar to choose from if you even notice it’s there. There is a rough estimate of how many people your content will reach for your spend—this taps into psychology and our need to reach more, often encouraging businesses to increase their spending without understanding how to improve performance for the same cost.

Placements

Ad placement refers to where your ad will show up in relation to Facebook and their affiliated advertising partners. In Ad Manager, you can choose where on Facebook your ad will show up.

There are many options including newsfeed, right sidebar, or in similar groups and pages. You even have the choice to customize whether your ads will be displayed on desktop, mobile, or both. When boosting a post, you’re limited to three choices of Facebook, Instagram, and Messenger. This means you don’t have the option to show your content on Facebook affiliated websites that are specific to your niche.

Content

Boosting a post only allows you to boost something that is on your page’s timeline. It does not allow you to create new content and test several versions of it to see which performs best with your specific audience. Some content is more successful with men than women, or with generation x than millennials.

Being able to test content across different audiences with slight tweaks to your words and graphics will help you understand your audience and what will garnish the most results from them based on the content they best respond to. Boosting does not allow you to modify any content or test across various audiences.

In conclusion, Facebook’s advertising options are amazing for businesses of all sizes. They offer a unique way to reach users wherever they are with a tool that they are actively engaged in. However, it takes time and practice to fully understand how to run a successful marketing campaign to your market or niche, and how to optimize your ads for better results and lower ad spend.

While boosting a post is a simple and convenient option, it should be used sparingly if at all. Take the time to learn and understand Facebook’s marketing and advertising tools to create better content that gets you the results you want.

Looking for help taking your business to the next level with a clearly defined marketing and business strategy? Let’s set up a 30-minute consultation and get you moving in the right direction. Click here and fill out the form to get started.