— March 9, 2018
Anyone can easily start a new Facebook page in minutes, but it’s not as easy to make a successful page that reaches and engages people. This is why we turned to three of our power users in hope of getting some practical advice.
Meet Alex Baer from Iris, Nicolas Griffioen from 90/24 and Alex Packham from ASTP. Combined they have started and still manage hundreds of Facebook pages with millions of fans. Who better to ask for advice than people that have started successful pages themselves?
Let’s go through the step-by-step process you should follow to successfully launch a new Facebook page today.
Research and understand your audience.
For all of our experts starting a successful page begins well before the actual launch. You lay the groundwork by researching and understanding the audience that you want to reach. Alex Packham uses the Facebook ads platform and the targeting options such as geographical location and interests to build a persona for his target audience. This helps him understand the size and potential of the audience and also helps him brainstorm content that is interesting to this audience.
Research and understand the competitive space.
Moving on from your own audience, it is also vital to research and understand the competitiveness of your field. Nicolas analyses competitors to understand what type of content works and what content doesn’t. This benchmarking process helps decide the content strategy for everything including what days and times to publish content, what multimedia to include in the posts, and what the most engaging way to write and structure a post is.
Understand who you are as a brand and identify your tone of voice.
When you know your target audience and you understand the competitive space you need to decide the brand personality and tone of voice that you will use in social media. This will help you differentiate yourself. For Alex Baer social media is a different type of animal to traditional media, which means that a brand might need to change its personality to better appeal to the social audience. However, that brand should still seek to remain consistent with the other channels it utilises. Alex Packham agrees that the social media branding should not be exactly replicated from traditional media but that it should have a slight spin on it. It should be more friendly, personable and appropriate for social media but still have the same values that the brand stands for.
Have guidelines in place for how to approach different situations.
There are several predictable situations that can occur in social media and it’s important that these are prepared for. These are cases such as customer support queries, new product ideas and negative comments. You should plan ahead in order to give your community managers better guidelines and tools to handle these cases. Work that iris does focuses on understanding how to approach different issues such as a social media crisis situations. ASTP also works with a similar approach and offers guidelines to the community managers on how to respond to negative comments and similar.
Setup and brand your page.
Now that you have laid the foundations of your Facebook strategy, it is the right time to actually setup the page. Go here to start your page. For 90/24 a good setup of the page includes adding a cover photo, profile picture, completing the full profile information and including links to the other key channels. Getting Facebook to verify the page, arranging the username and the URL of the page is part of this process too. ASTP works to brand the page effectively, to make it visually stimulating, and consumer facing.
Optimize Your Page Settings
When your page is branded, make sure to optimize it for the best possible performance. Ensure that you include all relevant business information. Full description, mission statement and other possible additional info are a must. Contact numbers and addresses are also helpful, depending on the type of your business. Don’t forget to put a relevant call to action button for maximum conversion of your audience.
Create at least one week worth of content and publish the first post.
Before announcing your new page to the public, you should prepare a content schedule. Alex Packham recommends having at least one week of content prepared before going live with the page. For Nicolas it is important to launch the page by publishing at least one really good post followed by frequent postings for the first few days in order to build a nice looking page.
Use All Possible Features You Deem Necessary
Facebook constantly introduces new features that make business pages more interactive and presentable. Make sure to use all possible features that you believe are necessary for your brand. The Facebook marketplace options are a nice way to sell your products directly through the network. Video covers are a great way to make the design of your page come to life. Consider these when setting up the page.
Let people know you are on Facebook.
Now your page is online, you have published your first post and you have several additional posts scheduled. It is now the right time to announce your new page and let people know you are on Facebook. 90/24 has a clear marketing strategy for the launch in order drive up awareness of their new Facebook page. They inform clients, partners and other sponsors relevant to the project and work with them to arrange announcement posts to be published on relevant pages. They also link from Twitter and their other social platforms.
Make a marketing push to grow your page.
This initial marketing push will hopefully result in some likes and engagement, but you do need a bigger push in order to dramatically grow the page. If you’re creating a page for a famous name or a big brand, you can look for any unofficial pages that already exist. Facebook can help you merge these pages with your official page which will help you easily acquire a decent fan base, suggests Nicolas.
For Alex Baer it is vital to put money behind your marketing campaign in order to get your page content seen. You do this best by using Facebook advertising. Alex suggests that you should not worry too much about the actual number of page likes you have, as that can now be considered a redundant number with the latest Facebook algorithm changes in mind. How many eyeballs your content gets is the key metric to focus on.
Following these steps does not necessarily mean that you will achieve huge fan numbers overnight, but it will certainly help you achieve success faster. You are now well equipped to start your new Facebook page and make it a success.