In the last post, we took a look at why industrial businesses should consider using Facebook. Examining general statistics about Facebook is important. Beyond the statistics, there are some other considerations that should inform your decisions.
You need to carefully address the pros and cons of Facebook . Then decide if it is the right social media tool for your industrial business.
To create a basic presence on Facebook is free. You need to invest your time. If you desire to do ads and sponsored posts, you would need to pay. In comparison to other tools and the potential reach to a billion people, Facebook is one of the most affordable marketing tools available.
Facebook is fairly easy to learn. The basics of how to navigate the platform and utilize its resources are intuitive. There are help links and portals throughout the site to assist people to get the most out of Facebook. You can also find outside resources that walk you through step-by-step.
There is a strong likelihood that a significant percentage of your customers or clients are on Facebook. If your business doesn’t have a presence on Facebook, you could be losing quite a bit of income and market share to the competition that is on Facebook.
Among the social networking platforms out there, Facebook is the most popular, at least for now. That’s a big benefit to you as it makes it easier to connect with your market.
Your market will assume they’ll have greater success finding what they need given the word of mouth recommendations and media promotions on the value of Facebook.
Facebook offers plenty of space for posts/updates and these updates can include videos and pictures. This kind of flexibility helps to engage your audience. Engagement is vitally important when it comes to realizing your return on investment.
Facebook is the most wonderful place for interesting and stimulating ideas and activities. However, precisely because Facebook is wonderful in these ways it can also be a very distracting place that can waste one of your most valuable commodities – TIME!
You’ll need to have a plan to follow when using Facebook to help ensure you do not get distracted.
There are so many ways that you can use Facebook to grow your business that at times it can seem overwhelming. With new apps or applications (programs that allow you to do any number things online, quickly and efficiently) being launched all the time, and experts recommending dozens of new strategies on an almost daily basis, anyone from do-it-yourself marketers to big corporate marketing managers can feel overwhelmed at the options to consider.
Sometimes overwhelm can lead to inaction and you’ll need to be careful not to fall into that trap.
Remember that successful marketers always use a variety of tools to reach their target market. If something was to happen to Facebook down the road you’d be stuck if your entire marketing strategy relied only on Facebook. Even though you may direct a sizeable percentage of your marketing effort to Facebook (given its immense ability to reach markets) you should still ensure that you continue to use other marketing tactics like traditional media promotions, in-person networking, your own website marketing, and blogging, etc.
Even if you have a targeted approach to using Facebook and are very disciplined, depending on the comprehensiveness of your Facebook marketing campaign, quite a bit of your time could be taken up with managing Facebook activities. Think carefully about how your time is used and explore outsourcing options.
One of the greatest things about Facebook is that it facilitates engagement with your target audience. Communication is transparent and fast-paced when managed well. Customers like transparency and the fact that they can read recommendations from happy customers via comments.
The flipside of this is that not all customers are happy all the time and when you do have an unhappy customer, that customer may, in fact, make his problems with your product/service very public. By deciding to post on his own profile that is made public to the world (if he chooses) or by posting on your company’s Facebook business page (if you allow fans to post), an unhappy customer can let everyone in her circles and yours know about the issue.
How you counter this is with great customer service and an immediate reply to any concerns made known in this way. This will mean that you or your community manager will need to monitor mentions of your brand on Facebook and throughout social media.
Often other customers will come to your rescue and comment in a positive light about you as well.
So now that you know the pros and cons, you can decide if Facebook is right for your industrial business.