Let’s face it, Facebook is a tricky beast.
One week you get great reach and feel like you’ve cracked it, the next it’s like shouting into an empty cave and yet you’ve done nothing different. I get it. It happens to me too and because it happens to me, I’ve learned how to work around this unpredictability as best I can. I’ve come up with 5 ways to get people talking on my Facebook page and one or two of them usually work, no matter what Facebook’s algorithm is up to.
Are You Talking To The Right People?
There is another aspect of this, however, you need to be really clear on and that’s your audience. If you have the wrong audience, it doesn’t matter how many tips you put into practise, you are never going to get them engaged. Before you waste hours of your time and tons of energy trying to liven up your Facebook page, make sure you are talking to the right people. The trick to this is to make sure you’re attracting your Super Customers (here’s a podcast I recorded about it, and here’s another and HERE is a cheatsheet I made especially for you!).
Once you have the right people on your Facebook page, getting them talking becomes waaaaay easier.
So, assuming you’re fully up to speed with your Super Customer, let’s look at some ways to get people talking on your business Facebook page.
OK. Let’s Get Them Engaged
One thing I find works well for me is when I issue a challenge – say around money or accountability, marketing or ‘me’ time. When I issue a challenge it seems to touch a nerve and get people talking. I might say ‘OK, for the next 7 days I want you to get really clear on the money in your business. Every day I’ll post a little task for you to do and by the end of the 7 days you’ll know what your costs are, what your profit margin in, what the most profitable products in your business are, how to track them, etc’ and then I’ll schedule a daily post for the following 7 days. I will tell people to get notifications from my page and I show them how to do it so they don’t miss a post. Then I ask who’s joining me. It never fails to get my fans interested and engaged because it’s a mixure of accountability, peer support and they get real results at the end of it – and people love the competitive nature of it.
So, what challenges could you issue to YOUR fans? What would they enjoy? What would help them? What would be easier for them if they were held accountable and weren’t doing it alone? See what you can think of and test it out.
Something else you need to know- if it doesn’t work at first, don’t write it off, just try it again a few weeks later.
Sometimes I’ll make a little confession on my Facebook page – usually it’s because I’m going through mum guilt or I’ve not been looking after myself, something I know my fans will understand and resonate with.
I recently had a BAD MUM confession because my 7 year old daughter had to have teeth out and I felt dreadful, so I shared that I was feeling dreadful and why. Not only did it make me feel better, it also showed everyone else I’m just a normal mum like them and I got a huge outpouring of support with other mums sharing what had happened to them.
[Tweet “Ditch the ‘professional face’ and show people you’re human if you want to build relationships”]
Showing people that you are a real person and that you’re human like them can go a long way to getting them to know, like and trust you. It’s too easy to hide behind your business brand and be ‘professional’ but remember, people buy people and sometimes showing your fans that they are not alone can make a big difference. I’m not suggesting for one minute that you divulge your deepest, darkest secrets – I’m suggesting you show your human side and see what happens.
3. Make A ‘Rough ‘n’ Ready’ Video
There is nothing like hearing and seeing someone to help build relationships in business- it works far better and far quicker than a page full of words. And don’t wait until you’ve had your hair done and you look like a glamourpuss – just do it! With your hair as it is. With no makeup. Getting your hands dirty and without hours of practise. The best videos I’ve seen are people talking passionately about what they do, sharing fabulous information and not looking like they’ve been in make-up for hours, with perfect lighting and a cheesy soundtrack. The best videos come from the heart.
[Tweet “The best videos come from the heart – ditch your video fears and get one made today”]
Videos are BRILLIANT for engagement and reach on Facebook and lots of other social media platforms, so don’t let your perfectionism stop you becoming a video queen.
Get over your video nerves and stop worrying about what people will think – they just want to learn and if you can show them something they will love, they’ll keep coming back and they will tell their friends about you, too.
4. Ask For Suggestions
If you’re making a decision about what product to make next or you’re wondering whether to offer a particular service, put it out to your Facebook fans. There’s no better way to help them feel involved than asking them for their opinion.
Even better, why not get them to vote on something? I’ve seen this done really well with products and services, where you give several options and ask your fans which one they prefer. If your business lends itself to it, show them photos – make a montage on Canva and put a letter next to each option, to make it easy for them to vote.
If you have the right fans on your page, they will take a second to click and give you their vote – it’s a tiny thing but it gets them engaged and makes them feel that you’re listening AND you get valuable feedback. The times I’ve seen this done best are when craft businesses use it and show photos of the options and before very long, they have orders flooding in as a result.
[Tweet “Making people feel involved in your business is the best form of marketing!”]
5. Share Something Controversial
This one isn’t for the faint-hearted but if you want to get people talking on your Facebook page, share an opinion or ask a question that you know is controversial.
You will certainly get people talking and you might get a few heated words, depending on the topic, but it will also bring another benefit. You will get rid of the people who are not aligned with your views and you’ll turn some of your Facebook fans into loyal tribe members, who love what you stand for.
One of my lovely clients deals with baby sleep issues and her stance is not to let babies ‘cry it out’ and she talks about that on her page. This is a HUGELY emotive topic because every mum has strong opinions on the way they have raised their children so she gets some colourful arguments going on – some people storm off in a ‘virtual’ huff and others stick around, happy that they have found other people who think like they do. You have to be prepared to stand up for yourself (in a lovely but firm way) and know that you will never please everyone – and that’s a good thing. Business that try to please everyone end up as beige and vanilla – they don’t stand out, they blend in with all the other mediocre businesses out there. I’d love you to be Marmite instead (here’s a blog I wrote on this exact topic!).
[Tweet “Better to be Marmite and stand out than be a beige, vanilla also-ran…”]
What You Need To Do Now
So, if you’re struggling to get people talking on your Facebook page, here’s what you need to do.
First of all, make sure you’re attracting the right Facebook fans or you may as well not bother. Secondly pick one or two of these and give them a try – if they don’t work, try mixing them up and give another idea a try. And don’t assume just because something doesn’t work once, it won’t again – it totally might. Facebook is so unpredicatable that you just need to keep trying different things regularly and see which work for you at any given time.
Have you tried any of these? How did they go for you? And which one out of these 5 do you think might work best for you now?
Leave a comment and we’ll see what types of results we’re getting! Good luck!
Claire Mitchell is a best-selling author of the Awesome Marketing Planner and founder of The Girls Mean Business, a mum and business owner. She has been featured in Marie-Claire, The Guardian, Closer Magazine, Essentials, The Huffington Post and on the BBC.