As more and more people use Facebook, it has evolved into a significant marketing tool and business information platform. More than 1.5 million organizations have a business fan page and 20 million users “Like” a fan page daily. Financial professionals are likewise turning to Facebook for client development as prospective customers increasingly use social media. Here are 7 simple steps you can take to start building your presence on Facebook and connect with potential clients:
How to Use Facebook for Marketing
1. First you need to create a profile on Facebook. Create a consistent description/bio and use a professional picture. Enable your profile to be viewable by all, even people who are not your friends. Don’t be afraid to share a little bit about yourself but keep it professional. Here’s a great profile example from a social media savvy wealth manager, Brian Lee Fricke.
2. Observe and learn from your connections to identify your target demographic. Interact with communities of people with common interests and make your content relevant, entertaining and shareable. Build relationships but be selective.
3. Create a business page and/or a group page. You can, and should, make more than one page or group. Try to think outside the box. You don’t have to necessarily make it about yourself or your company. A great idea is to make it about something connected to your business (i.e., investment info, financial planning, 401K etc) where you can share valuable information with your prospective clients. Project professionalism and personality at all times. Financial planner Cathy Curtis’ fan page below is a great example of how you can easily connect with your target market and provide them value:
4. Buy an easily recognizable domain name, preferably one with the same name as your business/group page name (or vice versa). Link your website/blog to all your social profiles.
5. Invite your contacts to join your business or group page. Generate traffic by syndicating your contents (i.e. blogs, videos, notes) across the web; provide a short description encouraging people to click the “Like” button along with a link to your page. Facebook provides multiple plugins to help you accomplish this by creating a welcome page to your fan page. You can also use Facebook ads to help increase your fan count. Below is an example of an attractive looking fan page from financial advisor Jeff Rose with a welcome page and a clear call to action to “Like” the page.
6. Don’t lose focus on your main goal. Post your services and business offers on your page but keep it to a minimum. Apply the 80/20 rule – for every 10 posts, 8 should provide useful information and value to the user, the other 2 you can sell your services or ask for a call to action. Further your business interests without being too aggressive. Remember to nurture your relationship with your followers – see Kahler Financial Group’s page below. Periodically share webinars, excerpts from an e-book, or other relevant information. You can incorporate your business offerings and services at the end of a video or an email.
7. Manage your online reputation proactively. Comply with FINRA regulations on social media.
The whole process may entail a lot of work and dedication but it doesn’t mean you have to do all the steps yourself. As long as your ideas and strategies are planned out, you can outsource to people who can help execute and realize your vision.
– Contributed by Vanessa Halloum, Marketing Coach and Social Media Manager at VanessaHallo.com, former marketing manager at Etrade & Citigroup
– InvestmentPal Guest