Facebook Video – Getting Over Your Fears

Facebook Video – Getting Over Your Fears

If you’ve been putting off doing Facebook video because it’s way too scary, this is for you.

In my last blog I shared Facebook expert Mari Smith’s excellent blog post about the changes going on at Facebook and the top things we can do to get Facebook working for us. She was very clear it was all about video and I shared her top 10 tips along with my own input and explanations on using video in your Facebook marketing and business.

I’m going to take those Facebook video tips one by one and show you how you could use them in your business. So, in this blog we’re going to tackle number 1 – focus on video but this is a HUGE topic in itself, so I’ll cover some today and the rest over the next couple of weeks. This is going to be a mammoth FACEBOOK VIDEO MASTERY series, I think you’re going to love it!

Video already takes priority in Facebook’s newsfeed. It’s only going to get bigger.

If you have tried putting videos on your Facebook page you’ll hopefully have found they get much better engagement than other posts? Obviously it depends on what’s IN the video, but if you can crack this, you will get lots of video views, which improves your Facebook page engagement, which in turn helps your page get seen by more people. At a time when it’s harder than ever to get seen on Facebook, it’s definitely worth grabbing video with both hands while its working well.

So, why might you NOT be using videos yet?

Let me take a guess…

Oooh, maybe you feel like you’re not ‘right’ for video. You might think you’d like to lose a bit of weight before going on screen? Maybe you keep telling yourself it would be better if your hair was tidier, or your voice was different or you had a more photogenic ‘look’. Hmm?

Or maybe you’re using the ‘I’m not techie enough’ excuse? I can’t ‘do’ videos! What about the editing? What do I use to record ON? Do I need a tripod? It’s all too scary!

Maybe you’re up for it but you’ve got video block – whenever you think about doing a video, you get stuck on what to make a video about? I mean what could you say that your customers and page fans would want to hear and watch? And what if they don’t like it? Oh heck, what if they laugh at me?

Blimey, what a lot of reasons NOT to do video! If you’ve talked yourself out of it before you recorded a single second  of video I’m not surprised!

But let me share something with you. I’m going to tell you how to work with and around all those reasons and excuses above.

GETTING PAST VIDEO FEARS AND OVERCOMING THE EXCUSES

Creating videos for your business, whether for your website or social media can be a nerve-wracking experience. It triggers all sorts of insecurities within in us about our appearance, our self-worth, our value – so why on EARTH would you want to drag all that up?

What if people laugh at me? What if they think I’m too fat/thin/ugly? What if I sound stupid? What if they think I’m unprofessional? What if my friends / old boss / mother-in-law see it? What will they think? What if people realise I’m just winging it and don’t really know what I’m talking about?

Run away! Run away! Why would you even want to go there? Even I had a wobble with those as I wrote them but do you know what? We all feel like that. Even people who are on TV every day!

But wouldn’t it be great to NOT worry about all those things? I mean, if they are holding you back from doing videos, imagine what else they are stopping you doing?

What if I told you these fears are not important and definitely not worth worrying about? What if I told you nobody really cares what you look like or sound like, as long as there is something for them in the video? What if I told you there are some things you can do to make Facebook video MUCH easier? It’s true!

Remember, it’s not about you

The first thing you have to realise is, it’s not about you.

People don’t watch videos ABOUT YOU unless you are a celebrity (sorry!) unless it’s an ‘about me’ video on your website (which is an awesome idea) but generally in our world, as small business owners (with big ambitions) people watch our videos to get help. They watch our videos to learn something they need to know or to see if they are missing something.

As long as you are sharing something interesting, relevant and of value TO THEM they don’t care what you look like or sound like, as long as they can understand what you’re saying. Occasionally you might get a nasty comment because Facebook does have trolls. I’ll tell you how to deal with them in a mo.

They want to know wiifm

What’s in it for me? Why are you reading this email? To see if I share something that could help you in your business, right? A tip, an idea, a new way of looking at something. Well, that’s the same for your Facebook fans, email subscribers, in fact anyone you come into contact with in your business.

Once you realise that, the whole Facebook video ‘thing’ gets much easier. What do your fans and customers want to know? What could you share that would help them in their life? What would make them take notice? What words or phrases could you use that would grab their attention? What are they thinking about or worrying about that you can help with? What would make them happy? What would they find intriguing?

“Why does my dog eat grass?”
“How long should my baby nap for?”
“Should I send e-newsletters to my customers?”
“How do I deal with email overload?”
“Why aren’t people visiting my website?”
“Why has my silver jewellery gone black?”
“How can cheese help my concentration?”*

*I have no idea how cheese could help your concentration, but if you know the answer then I know a load of people who would love an excuse to eat more cheese!

Think about what your customers and Facebook fans might be putting into Google. Think about what YOU put into Google! I know, right? Weird and random things (if you’re anything like me) but if you can figure out what your fans are bothered about, then YOU can be the person showing up on Facebook videos in their newsfeed with the answers!

What if I get a nasty comment?

It might happen, it might not. Depending on what you’re sharing, you might ‘trigger’ someone who then feels hurt or upset or angry or jealous and makes a nasty comment. The more controversial you are, the more likely this is to happen.

If you’re not controversial and you’re just sharing how you painted your latest picture of a puppy, it probably won’t happen. If you’re talking about vaccinations, politics, parenting, money, anything that people are likely to have strong feelings about, you’re probably going to get all sorts of comments, good and bad.

So what do you do? Well, understand first of all that people are very brave when they are on Facebook and will say things they would NEVER say in real life so they are unlikely to be a real threat. Don’t reply. Don’t bite. Don’t engage. Ban. Delete. Move on. No matter how hurtful a comment might be, don’t let it get to you. Don’t let it hurt you because then they win. Let it slide off and have a way of dealing with it so it doesn’t ruin your day.

As someone who has had ALL sorts of nastiness happen on my Facebook page I can tell you this is easier said than done – but for your own sanity you have to just ban (so they can’t comment any more), THEN delete the comment, then do something that requires you to focus so you can get them out of your head. Whenever you catch yourself dwelling on it, STOP IT. DON’T LET THEM WIN. Focus your precious time and energy on making your business stronger.

If you can’t BEAR the thought (yet) of putting your lovely face on a video, in my next blog (coming soon) I’m going to show you that you don’t have to be ON video to make a video.

And in the following blog  I’m going to give you some great ideas for Facebook videos.

And that’s just part 1! After that we’ll cover video production tips, technology tips, different types and sizes and lengths of video, monetising video, captions, and more! You’ll be a Facebook video pro before you know it.

The Facebook Feed Rumours Are True! (Sort Of)

The Facebook Feed Rumours Are True! (Sort Of)

The Facebook Newsfeed Rumours

OK so for AGES rumours have been flying around that very soon the only way we will get our business posts seen in the Facebook newsfeed will be to pay for ads. So is it true?

Well, sort of.

Very simply put, Facebook has so much content, paid and organic, that it’s impossible to show every user every post that’s targeted at them. And although Facebook has shareholders and advertisers to keep happy, they also have to keep their USERS happy, otherwise they will stop using Facebook.

This article by Facebook expert Mari Smith explains LOADS about what’s going on and what we can do about it.

I’ve pulled out some of the key things I think will help you. Firstly this video from Adam Mosseri, Facebook’s Head of News Feed where he explains how the newsfeed works. I found it really interesting. Here is the link to his article.

Secondly, here are Mari’s top 10 tips on what businesses can do to keep getting seen. Not unsurprisingly, it’s all about VIDEO. We’ve known for ages that videos, especially FB live videos take top priority in our newsfeed – this is just the start!  Mari’s version has a lot more technical detail that might feel a little overwhelming so I’ll leave you to read the tips in full on Mari’s blog here but here is my ‘translated for small business owners with big ambitions’ summary. 

Over the next few weeks I’ll take each of these tips and give you LOADS of ideas on what you could do, and how you can use them in your business, so make sure my emails aren’t going into your spam folder!

1. Focus On Video

Video already takes priority in Facebook’s newsfeed. It’s only going to get bigger. Facebook is putting even more things into place to make it a viable alternative to your TV, after all I tend to get my news via Facebook these day, THEN see it on TV later. How about you? If you’re not already doing videos then you need to start embracing the idea. They don’t have to have you talking to the camera, there are loads of alternative ways to create fantastic videos. Don’t worry, there will be a way that works for you.

2. Do More LIVE Videos

OK so the novelty of Facebook live videos has worn off a bit. To start with we watched all of them. Then we realised that some aren’t as good as others. Now we’re being more selective and picky about which we watch and there are certain things that DEFINITELY make your live videos MUCH more likely to be watched. I’ll share those with you in next week’s newsletter. Even though the novelty has worn off, Facebook Live videos are still top of the newsfeed priority list so it’s definitely worth doing them (but the RIGHT way). 

“We’ve seen that people comment more than 10 times more on Facebook Live videos than on regular videos. ~Facebook”

3. Do more short, punchy videos

According to Mari, Sheryl Sandberg, Facebook chief operating officer recommends creating ‘snackable’ video content. That is, between 6-15 seconds. This is the ideal length to be used as ad breaks. Now, I’m sure Sheryl was referring to the big brands when she mentioned this but how can we, as small businesses with big ambitions use it in our marketing? Well, 6-15 seconds is not a lot of time – what could you do as a teaser? What could you demonstrate in 6-15 seconds? What could you share that your fans would love? I’ll give you some ideas in one of my newsletters very soon.

4. Create longer videos too

OK so the short videos I just mentioned are what you’ll already be seeing while you watch longer videos – the longer video stops while a short video ad plays. Yes, I find it intensely annoying too.

But Facebook still needs longer videos in which to insert the ad breaks. Also, your fans won’t just want short videos, if you have something awesome to share with them. So, how long is longer? Well, according to Mari anywhere from 90 seconds to 30+ minutes for your regular Facebook videos. And, for your Live video broadcasts, a minimum of five minutes and up to four hours. And for Instagram, 60 seconds. Phew!

5. Add captions to your videos

According to Mari’s research 85 percent of videos are watched with sound off. It’s not surprising when you think how often you’re somewhere that makes listening tricky. Also, sometimes you just want to watch the story and read what’s being said – it’s definitely how I prefer to watch videos.  Adding captions is easy and lots of the work is done for you. I’ll show you how to do this in one of my newsletters very soon!

6. Create highly shareable videos

According to Mari ‘Share is the ‘holy grail’ on your Facebook business content. It’s free viral marketing, when you can get it. According to Facebook, “Recommendations from friends are powerful: in fact, 48% of video watch time on Facebook comes from shares. ~Facebook” So, how can you create videos that are sharable? Well there are lots of ways and obviously I’ll be sharing a load with you very soon in one of my newsletters but to get you started, think about sharing stories about your business. Think about sharing those time lapse videos of work in progress. Think about sharing videos of magical things in your business – I sat yesterday and watched a wax melt melting. I watched it 3 times. It was mesmerising. More ideas coming soon!

7. Create square videos

According to Mari’s research  “square videos perform better on Facebook, resulting in 28% more views, more likes, and shares, while leading to a 67% greater view-completion rate.” Wow! That matters when you’re trying to make an impression and build relationships. Also, you get more space in the newsfeed with a square video as opposed to a landscape one, which is a good thing.

Adobe Spark is great for creating square videos and it’s free! I’ll share some more apps and software very soon. Remember if you make your videos 60 seconds or under, you can use them on Instagram too.

8. Monetise your own videos

According to Mari, there are three primary ways to monetise:

  1. Your own offer. This is probably the most relevant to us as small business owners. It’s where you put a link to your offer in the video, or the post, or both.
  2. Sponsors. Worth a look but probably not your best option.
  3. Ad breaks. You need at least 2,000 followers and your live broadcast needs to have more than 300 people watching at the same time. Then, you’d qualify for ad breaks after you’ve been live for at least 4 minutes. You can take additional ad breaks every 5 minutes after your first break. But they are really annoying for your viewers. Just saying…

9. Stay away from the Boost button

According to Mari Smith, “most savvy marketers on Facebook have long known that the Boost button is a ‘lightweight’ ad interface. The Facebook ad algorithms know that you are a somewhat novice advertiser if all you do is boost your posts…” It’s time to get familiar with the Facebook Ads Manager and start looking at proper targeting and custom audiences. Luckily, I can help you with this – there will be a newsletter about it very soon!

10. Be a more sophisticated advertiser

According to Mari, if you “Use Ads Manager + install the Facebook Pixel + Standard Event tracking + use Custom Audiences and Lookalike Audiences + do retargeting + choose Traffic, Conversions, Products or Leads for your ad objective. This combo shows the Facebook ad algorithms that you are a much more sophisticated advertiser, compared to a business that only hits the Boost button.”

OK if that sounded like a very scary foreign language to you, I’m not surprised! What Mari is saying is that if you start to use the Facebook Ad Manager tools properly, your ads will perform better and you MIGHT get better organic reach too. Hmm. I don’t doubt it’s true but it feels like hard going! Try the first few options first, I reckon!

So, in my next few newsletters and blogs I’ll be taking Mari’s excellent advice and translating it into ideas you can use in your business. Don’t worry, you’ll be using Facebook like a pro very soon.

I’d love to know what you think of this. Does it make you excited? Worried? Scared? Are you already using videos on Facebook? How are they working for you? Tell me! 🙂

 

10 Ways To Use Facebook Groups To Grow Your Business

10 Ways To Use Facebook Groups To Grow Your Business

If you use Facebook there is a good chance you’re a member of at least one Facebook group – heck, you might be a member of several (if you’re thinking ‘more like 247’ you might have a slight addiction!) and why not? Facebook groups are great for socialising, supporting learning, buying and selling, organising events and generally giving you somewhere away from the ‘noise’ of the Facebook timeline to chat.

I’ve been using groups to support my business training since 2012 and to be honest, I LOVE them.

  • They allow me to virtually get to know my students.
  • I can support them in a safe setting.
  • They get peer support from other members.
  • We brainstorm and chat, tackle problems and challenges, celebrate success, practice videos and give feedback on blogs and websites and make friends.
  • We set up introduction threads, run competitions, support each other to hit milestones and help each other build our business.

That’s powerful – in fact you will often hear me talk about the Power of the Group. 

It adds a new dimension to my teaching – you’re never alone in your learning. And THAT is more important than it might at first sound because many of my learners are women business owners working by themselves, at home around busy lives where their friends and family just don’t get what it’s like to be taking on the huge task of building a business.

What’s Good About Facebook Groups?

Facebook groups are incredibly versatile. You have different privacy settings from secret (not findable – membership is by invitation only and only members can see group details and content) to closed (appears in searches for groups and non- members can see the group title, description and admins/members but only members can see content) to open (searchable, content is open to everyone, members can either join and be given immediate access or  can be set so an admin has to approve the request).

  • You can choose whether to allow members to add people automatically or set it so you have to approve requests. You can choose whether member posts automatically appear or whether you have to moderate them.
  • You can create group chats with the whole group (think carefully before making this a regular thing as it can be annoying to be pulled into group chats you neither requested nor wanted).
  • You can create events within a group, that all members can see. The events area lets you add images and videos, times and dates and information and it keeps it all together in one place.
  • Members can choose to receive notifications when someone posts or comments (that can get overwhelming quite quickly) but you can choose your notification level and control what you see.
  • Members can create Facebook live videos within the group. They can also upload videos, images and documents that are all then neatly stored in the photos/ videos/ files sections for future reference.
  • Members can search within the group for words, phrases or people.
  • Admins can set out group rules in the ‘about’ section and members can report posts they feel are not within the rules, which are then flagged up to admins to delete or approve.
  • Admins can ask questions of people requesting to join the group, to help them decide whether to let them in.

Businesses are using Facebook groups for a whole range of reasons, so could you be using them to build YOUR business? Here are a few suggestions to get your brain cells whirring.

 

1 Support a study programme

This is how I use Facebook groups in my business. Every programme or club I run has a Facebook group attached to it. It allows me to add value to my teaching and build a supportive community in which I can help my students and they can help each other.

 

2 Parent’s group

If you run children’s classes or have a business working with children or parents, a closed Facebook group can be a great way to share opinions, ideas and images away from the public timeline.

Often, parents worry about sharing images of their children on a Facebook page because it’s open and anyone can share from a page. In a closed group only group members can see the posts and images and if they try to share them outside the group, the post comes up with an ‘attachment unavailable’ message, you might have seen these before.

Yes, people can save images within a group to their device (or screenshot them) but if you limit group membership to parents and carers of the children you work with, there shouldn’t be any issues. Best make the group rules very clear, however, and tell people that they can only download images of their own children and must ask permission if another child is featured in the photo.

Finally, if you do work with children and parents it’s always sensible to ask them to sign an image permission/disclaimer form to allow you to use images of their children in your marketing. That way, you know who is happy for images to be shared AND who isn’t.

 

3 Interest Group

If your business sells wool, you could set up a local knitters Facebook group. If you run a toyshop then you might set up a local children’s event Facebook group for parents and team up with other businesses aimed at parents in the area, to pool your marketing. If you are a florist and you run local workshops, you could set up a local ‘florist workshop’ Facebook group.

You get the idea. Bringing together people with the same interests, who are a great fit for your business allows you to get to know potential customers, build a relationship and share your knowledge. That way, when they are ready to buy they are much more like to buy from you than someone else.

 

4 Special offers and sales

If you have regular stock clear-outs, or often launch new products  it can be a good idea to set up a Facebook group where your group members get first dibs at the deals. It makes them feel special and they are much more likely to buy than your general Facebook fans, as they have chosen to be in that group for that reason.

 

5 Feedback group

Imagine a place where you can get useful, honest feedback on your products and services in a safe place away from the public gaze. Imagine a group where you can share ideas you’re thinking of developing and get a steer on the best options (in other words, what people would BUY). Depending on your type of business, a closed (or by invitation only) Facebook group could be just what you need.

I recommend this in Crafty Business School as a way to gauge opinion on product ideas before you go to the time and expense of developing them into full-blown product lines. Also, if you listen to your group members and create what they have asked for, guess who will be the first to buy?

FREE BONUS: Download my 7-point checklist for running successful and profitable Facebook groups!

6 Networking Group

If your business involves selling to other businesses, you could create a virtual networking Facebook group to bring them together. Not only do you have a lovely group of people to get to know, but they all get to know each other too – it’s a win-win.

My study groups are full of business owners and even though the primary purpose of the groups is to support their learning, I find that friends are made and business is done, because they are all entrepreneurs.

 

7 Support group

Imagine you work with new mums, maybe you’re a breastfeeding coach or offer baby massage. It might be a great idea to set up a local mum and baby Facebook group – NOT for the purpose of selling to members, but rather to get to know them and see how you can help. It could become a safe, friendly place so the group members don’t feel alone and can ask questions they might not be able to ask outside the group. I have a policy in my groups, which is ‘there’s no such thing as a silly question’ and it’s true! If you don’t understand something, there is a good chance you’re not alone. This alone means your support group becomes a valuable resource for the right people.

 

8 Event group

If you run or regularly sell or teach at events, workshops or fairs, Facebook groups can be a good way to bring together people who want to know where you are (in a non-stalky way) or who have attended your events and want to keep in touch. It means you have a group containing raving fans, who are much more likely than the average person on the street to seek you out in future.

 

9 List building group

So, this won’t work for every business and you have to be careful not to spend so much time in there that your core business is neglected, but offering membership of a Facebook group to fans and followers can help you build your subscriber list. In essence, you are bringing together people who already like what you do and because they are members of your group (depending on their notification settings) there is a high chance they will see your group posts ahead of stuff from pages.

This, therefore is a great place to ask them to sign up to your newsletter because they are already warm contacts, and if you let them know you will share offers, deals and valuable information regularly, they will probably sign up. It’s important to build your email list because with social media you can never guarantee your posts will be seen (yes, even in groups) so it’s a good idea to build an email list, so you can get your helpful messages in front of your fans on YOUR terms and not just when Facebook decided to show it to them.

It’s also good if you can offer an incentive to get them to sign up – a little freebie tips list, or one-off discount code, or some other nugget of awesome that they can only access in return for their email address. Just remember, the right people (your Super Customers) will love it. Don’t worry about everyone else.

 

10 Market night

If you sell lovely products, Facebook groups can be a great place to host market nights. There is definitely a trick to getting these to work and much of it is about building a buzz before hand. Showing photos of what will be for sale on your Facebook page and telling your fans they can only buy them on Market Night and it will all be happening in the Facebook group, is a good way to get them chomping at the bit and ready to buy. Don’t assume that because you’ve mentioned it once that’s enough. Oh no – you need to market it like crazy, because people are busy and will forget.

Make sure you post for at least 10 days prior to the event, showing bits and bobs that will be for sale, then ramp up the volume closer to the day. In other words, post LOADS of gorgeous things they will be able to buy, tell them which are one-offs, tell them which are bargains, treat it like an exciting bumper-sale!

Usually Market Night holders issue a password in the group at the start of the event and the first person to comment with that password on a particular item has bought it. This avoids confusion. You just need to make it really clear in the group rules and on explanatory posts that this is how it works.

Finally, make sure you get paid! People need to ideally pay on the night (it’s good if you can have someone generating paypal invoices and doing the admin as you go) otherwise you waste valuable time chasing non-payers and then might have to list the item again, which is a shame

Is it for you?

Running a Facebook group definitely isn’t for everyone. It can be time consuming, you can get plagued by spammers and every so often you get personality clashes and full-on battle taking place in groups!

My best advice for you is first of all, don’t set up a group for the sake of it. Make sure you know what you want from the group and how it will help your business.

Secondly, put some rules in place, so everyone knows where they stand. Are ‘sales’ posts allowed? Do you need everyone to introduce themselves when they join the group? You don’t need to go overboard – just keep it firm, but fair and let the group find its feet.

Finally, it’s often helpful when you have a new group to ask a series of questions, maybe pop some videos of you in there, things that will bring people out of their shell and make them feel comfortable and confident to ask questions.

I’d love to know how you have got on so far with Facebook groups in building your business, and what plans you have to try them. Pop a link in the comments and let me know 🙂

 

 

Facebook Live Tips For Nervous Business Owners

Facebook Live Tips For Nervous Business Owners

Videos are easily the best way to get seen on social media. Most of the social media platforms are putting a big focus on video and live streaming and if you’re brave enough you could really benefit from this. Facebook in particular gives its Facebook Live videos priority over other types of content so, if you post a video, it is more likely to be seen than anything else on your page. It’s a quick and easy way to get more engagement and it’s so simple to do, if you can get over yourself and give it a go.

If you do decide to try them, here are a few tips to help your Facebook live videos be the best they can be, for free!

1. Make sure you have a good internet connection because any sort of live streaming takes up LOADS of bandwidth. If you have a poor signal, your videos won’t load for your viewers and if you DO manage to get one to play, it will usually cut you off in your prime. Ouch! If you don’t have good internet, opt to record a video on your webcam or phone/tablet and upload to Facebook instead of live streaming.

2. Have a point to each video and keep it short. You don’t need to waffle for ages just to fill space. A 15 second video that shows us something interesting is better than a 5 minute one that sends us to sleep.

3. Make good lighting a priority. You don’t have to spend money – a couple of desk lamps with daylight bulbs, positioned in front of you while you are recording, can make your video look much more professional. Alternatively, sit with a window in front of you (not behind you, or you’ll look like a silhouette) and choose an overcast day. If you’re trying to record in bright sunlight, you’ll squint, your eyes will water and you’ll get a runny nose. That’s not quite the look you’re aiming for. Also, bright sunlight on your face will bleach out your features. Natural but not too bright light is best.

4. Look at the camera, NOT at yourself on screen. I know it’s tempting, but you will look as though you’re talking to someone else and you need the viewer to feel you are talking directly to them. If in doubt, stick a little sticker next to your camera to remind you (you can put some bullet points on there too, to keep yourself on track).

5. SMILE! From the minute you reach to hit the record button until after you’ve pressed ‘stop’. You’re on camera as soon as you hit ‘record’, so even if you’re sitting back down again or haven’t started talking yet, smile and engage with us. It will make you look and feel more relaxed and you won’t have that ‘rabbit in the headlights’ look you see on so many videos.

Remember, when you create any videos for your social media accounts but particularly live ones, it really helps to build a relationship between you and your viewers. When they can see and hear and even talk with you via chat in real time, they feel a part of the business and they feel like you’re no longer a stranger. Marketing is all about people and relationship – people buy people, as the saying goes and it’s true! We are much more likely to buy from someone we ‘know’ than a total stranger, even if we only virtually know them from videos.

People aren’t watching to judge you or laugh at you (unless that’s your aim) but instead, they want to get to know you and hear what you have to say so ditch the nerves and give it a go. After all, if you fluff it or forget what you wanted to say, you can always delete and start again!

Facebook Page Like A Ghost-Town? Try These Tips

Facebook Page Like A Ghost-Town? Try These Tips

Hands up if your Facebook page feels like a ghost-town? You know what I mean, right? You ask a question or post a photo and you get…..nothing. It’s like your fans don’t exist. And then you wonder why you even bother (and usually start muttering about stupid Facebook under your breath).

The trouble is it’s a vicious circle. Facebook will show your page to more of your fans if you get lots of engagement (likes, shares, comments) on your posts. But you can’t get lots of engagement on your posts if nobody is seeing them in the first place, right? It’s chicken and egg.

So how do you break this fiendish Facebook cycle and finally get seen?

Well, that can vary from week to week. We all know how unpredictable and fickle Facebook is – something that worked brilliantly last week falls flat as a pancake this week. However, the good news is that there are a few things that stand more of a chance of working, no matter how tricky Facebook is acting.

I want to share 3 things you can do to give yourself and your Facebook posts the BEST chance of being seen by the people who love your business, and without having to pay for ads.

Share Stuff From Big Pages

This might sound a bit odd – you’re trying to get people to see your page so why share other people’s content? Well, there are a few reasons.

Firstly, big pages usually get big because their content works well. They have tried and tested lots of posts and they only use what works, so you’re using proven good content.

Secondly, Facebook seems to give more visibility to a post from a bigger page so when you share it on YOUR page, you kind of borrow some of their popularity. I’ve tried this lots of times and so have my clients and it does seem to work – posts shared from big pages get more reach and get seen by more people.

Why This Works

This works in your favour two ways – it means that you start to get people over to your page because you appear in their timeline due to the ‘big page popularity’ factor and there’s a good chance they’ll stick around and look at your other stuff while they are there. Also, because more people are seeing your ‘shared from a big page’ post, the Facebook pixies think ‘aha! This page is interesting to people, we’d better push it up the queue and show it to more people because it’s popular’. Bizarre, but true.

Won’t It Devalue My Own Content?

If you’re worried that you’re somehow devaluing your own content by sharing someone else’s then don’t. Your page fans want to see content that’s interesting to them. In the nicest possible way, they don’t care about who wrote it – they just want to read good content and they will appreciate you sharing it.

It’s not something you’d do for every post, but one out of five is a good option. If you’re posting once per weekday, then make one day a ‘big page share’ day. The filter needs to be if you find it interesting and useful, your fans probably will too.

Share What Goes On Behind The Scenes

But why do people want to see my mess? I hear you ask. Ha! We DO! Not necessarily your mess but definitely stuff you’re working on, or planning or some ‘before and afters’.

I was teaching 160 florists recently about social media and I explained that we want to see what they are working on. They were gobsmacked. They couldn’t understand why anyone would want to them them in their scruffs working on wedding flowers, or something half finished or even a photo of their flower delivery from the wholesalers. ‘Why on earth would anyone want to see THAT?” they asked. The answer is ‘because we don’t know what goes on and we are nosy’.

What ‘Behind The Scenes’ Stuff Should I Share?

I shared a ton of tips and ideas with them of ‘behind the scenes’ things they could share and I could see the penny dropping and light-bulb moments happening all over the place. Just because THEY work with flowers and see this stuff every single day doesn’t mean WE do. For people like me who love flowers, I LOVE to see rooms full of gorgeous blooms. I love to see artists at work. I would love someone to make a little video and talk me through each sort of flower because I don’t know what most of them are called.

Whether you’re a florist or an artist, a crafter, HR consultant or beauty therapist, there are ‘behind the scenes’ photos and videos we’d love to see and the best thing is, you don’t need to do anything special to prepare for this. If you’ve just scoped out a class you’re going to teach, or you’re setting out the materials or doing a sound check, get some photos. If you’re sorting fabrics or threads, or you’re preparing ingredients or equipment, take some photos. If you’re working on a spreadsheet, take a photo of your computer with your cuppa.

You Have The Curse Of Knowledge

I know it doesn’t sound interesting to YOU but you work with this every day. You have what I call ‘THE CURSE OF KNOWLEDGE’. You’ve forgotten what it’s like NOT to know this stuff but WE don’t know. And we are interested. And it shows you’re human. We like that.

 

Get Over Yourself And Use Video

Those ‘behind the scenes’ things we just talked about? You can do them on video as well as in pictures. Facebook LOVES video, it gives it preference over text or image posts most of the time and the more views your video gets, the more people it will show your video to and the more your page will get seen.

Facebook makes it super easy to use video, especially as it’s just introduced live streaming too. Live streaming is like doing a live broadcast from your phone or tablet (it’s not available on computers yet). You’ll see a little head with circles radiating out from it when you look at your Facebook app option for a post – that’s Facebook LIVE. If you’ve heard of Periscope it’s the same thing, but for Facebook.

If the thought of live broadcasting brings you out in hives, just record some short videos on your phone and upload them to Facebook. It’s better to upload them direct to Facebook rather than sharing a YouTube video because Facebook gives preference to videos hosted on its system (in other words, they will show it to more people).

What Videos Could You Record?

Exactly what we just talked about. Behind the scenes things are a great option but here is a blog I wrote with a few more ideas for you.

The main thing to remember is that your fans will watch the videos because they want to learn. It doesn’t matter if you think your voice sounds funny or you are having a bad hair day – you don’t have to be on camera. You can buy a little phone tripod for hardly any money and just set it away recording as you demonstrate something or answer a question.

What You Need To Remember

It’s unlikely any of these will create an immediate huge buzz on your Facebook page but they will definitely help and if you are consistent, and post regularly then within a few weeks you should start to see more people interacting on your page.

If that still doesn’t work then it may be you have the wrong fans. By that I mean you’ve been attracting the wrong likes – your fans aren’t interested in what you do and therefore don’t want to engage. If you think this might be the case (and it happens quite a lot) then it’s time to revisit your Super Customer. Here’s a blog that will help you get clear on who you REALLY WANT on your Facebook page.

Is It Working For You?

If you’ve got any more tips that work even when Facebook is being temperamental, I’d love to hear them – pop them in the comments below. And if you use any of these 3 tips above and they work for you, I’d LOVE to hear about that too!