Understanding Facebook Insights

Now that you have a page that should be fully operational its time to understand how people are engaging with your page. To do this Facebook offers a tool called Insights which after gaining a minimum of thirty likes will give you metrics relating to your page. There are now eight sections covered by Facebook Insights:

  1. Overview
  2. Likes
  3. Reach
  4. Page Views
  5. Actions on Page
  6. Posts
  7. Video
  8. People

Let’s take a more in-depth look at each one to better understand what insights you can gain about your page.

Overview

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The overview section covers your page’s performance over the last week. This features four areas:

  • Page Views – total page views for your page over a certain period of time.
  • Page Likes – shows the total likes for your page and the new likes your page has gotten including the percentage increase or decrease in them over the last week.
  • Post Reach – which is the total number of people that saw your page and posts, this also includes percentages for the last week.
  • Videos – the total of video views you’ve received with at least three seconds watched.

There is also an area that evaluates your five most recent posts in terms of type, reach, engagement, and promoting.

Likes

The next section to cover is Likes, the information under likes features another three sections:

  • Page Likes – this is the total page likes your page gets everyday.
  • Net Likes – this number evaluates your new likes versus unlikes for a net number.
  • Where your Page Likes Happened – evaluates where your page likes happened

Reach

Next is the reach section with covers four main areas:

  • Post Reach – the amount of people that received your post in their feed. This can be examined individually through paid or organic reach.
  • Likes, comments, and shares – these are forms of engagement that your fans use on your page. This shows how much of this engagement is helping you reach even more people.
  • Hide, Report as Spam and Unlikes – this is the opposite of the above, these are forms of engagement that have a negative effect on your page’s ability to reach people.
  • Total Reach – this is how many people have received some form of activity from your page in their feed.

Page Views

The visits section elaborates on how people are visiting your page through two sections:

  • Page and Tab Visits – this keeps track of the number of people that view your page and page tabs.
  • External Referrers – here you can see the number of people that found your page from an external website and were directed to your page.

Actions on Page

This is the newest addition to Facebook insights and covers your calls to action through a Total Actions on Page measurement seen below. This allows you to see how your call to action buttons are performing.

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Posts

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The post section helps you evaluate how to make effective post. There are three areas that cover the posts section:

  • When Your Fans Are Online – this shows the time of day that people who like your page are on Facebook and therefore more likely to see your content during those times.
  • Posts Type – allows you to see the different levels of performance your posts experience. Different posts with have a different reach and engagement this helps you identify those.
  • Top Posts from Pages You Watch – here you can see pages that you’ve chosen to monitor and how their posts are performing. It should help give an idea of what the competition or other businesses that excel in your industry are doing on Facebook to help grow their business.

Video

In the video section you’ll find the data you need to analyze for how your videos are performing. There are three areas Facebook provides to help evaluate:

  • Video Views – this is the number of times that your video has been watched. For a video to be considered watched the viewer must have seen a minimum of three seconds of the video.
  • 30-Second Views – this builds on the Video Views by showing how many people continue to see your videos for at least thirty seconds. For videos that are less than thirty seconds long, Facebook will count people who watched 97% of it as a 30-Second View.
  • Top videos – this tells you which of the videos on your page get the most views. Views in this case are the same as Video Views and are counted if the user sees a minimum of three seconds of video.

People

The people section helps you understand the people you’re trying to reach and connect with on Facebook. Three areas cover this section:

  • Your Fans – this lets you see information about the people that like your page. Here you can evaluate how your doing with a particular gender, age group or location.
  • People Reached – here you can see how many people your page has reached the feeds of for the past twenty-eight days.
  • People Engaged – tells you he people have liked, commented, or shared posts over the last twenty-eight days.

Now that you know what Facebook Insights have to offer try to tailor the information that best suits your business needs. Facebook Insights provides you with a valuable look of not only what you’re doing right on social media but also what you’re doing wrong. Don’t be afraid to make mistakes but try to learn from them with the tools you have at your disposal.

Making an Interactive Facebook Page

Now that you know what to post on your page. It’s time to work on your interaction with customers on Facebook. The best way to get started on this is to make a clean informative Facebook page.

Cover Photo

The first thing customers will likely notice when they visit your page is your cover photo. Make sure your cover photo is engaging and informative. It could feature information about upcoming events at your business or promote a product or a certain aspect of your business. When creating a cover photo, keep in mind the dimensions are 851 x 315 pixels. If you’re trying to be real efficient with your space note that your profile image covers the cover photo slightly. Below are the dimensions you need to know to use the space of a cover photo efficiently.

cover photos

About Yourself

One of the most overlooked parts of any Facebook page is the about section for a business. But you should be sure to utilize this area to really tell people what your business is about. A small about box shows to the left of your feed on your Facebook page. This is a great place to put links to a website or other links affiliated with your business. Nowadays you can even use a video in your pages about section to help promote your business.

Call Customers to Action

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One of the neat features Facebook has for your page is the “Add a Button” button. This allows you to add a button at the top of your page in the cover photo, next to the “Like” and “Message” buttons (seen above is an example with the “Use App” button). This can be a variety of different calls to action:

  • Contact Us
  • Book Now
  • Call Now
  • Send Message
  • Use App
  • Play Game
  • Shop Now
  • Sign Up
  • Watch Video
  • Send Email
  • Learn More

Choose whichever call to action is most applicable to your business and utilize it at the top of your page. Due note that you can only add one of these buttons but feel free to change occasionally to promote a different aspect of your business. You can also always try to incorporate a call to action inside your About section if you feel like you want to utilize more space.

Contests or Sweepstakes

Another great way to engage with customers on your page is to utilize your page for a promotional giveaway or competition. This goes back to what to post on your page with respect to sharing customer content. If you do a competition on Facebook with he winners content being featured you’re in a win-win situation. Not only do you generate more content for your page but you generate interaction with your business.

A sweepstakes can have the same effect. Sweepstakes are also a great way to collect information about your customers. A sweepstakes could be as simple as, to enter tell us your favorite flavor ice cream for an ice cream shop’s Facebook. Or it could be collecting more personal information from your customers like emails and handles on other social networking sites, that way you have an idea of who your active customers are and other ways you can engage with them

To do this you may want to enlists the help of a third party app. Here is a link to a WishPond post that explains how to run a sweepstakes. If you want to use a third party app such as WishPond, they explain further down how to do so.

The People

Of course you can’t forget the people engaging on your page either. It is important to take the time to look through what your customers are saying on your page. Engage with the good and bad comments to show that you care. Remember that even people who don’t like your page can see it and if they see a business that truly cares about its customers and engages with them, it will increase their likeliness to like your page.

This can also help you handle some customer service problems, if someone had a bad experience and wrote about it on your Facebook, you have a chance to make up for it. You can also make someones day by showing that you appreciate their business by taking the time to write on someones post. It can be as simple as thank you in reply to a post about how much they enjoyed a day at your store or something along those lines.

BONUS! Engage Outside Your Page

One last way you can engage with customers is to leave your page and engage with people on other pages. As the administrator of your business’ Facebook page you can comment on other pages as your business. This way you can get the attention of people that are engaging with that page. An example would be maybe you’re an ice cream store that sells a certain brand of ice cream. Commenting on that brands Facebook page as your ice cream shop would be a great way to raise awareness for your business to people that may be interested in that particular brand of ice cream.

Now go wild and engage with your customers to the best of your abilities on your page. Next post will be about Facebook insights!

What to Post on Facebook

Once you have your small business’ Facebook page up and running, its important to start thinking about what you should post to that page. You can post a variety of different things to your Facebook page, whether it be links, pictures, video, or just text, there are certain post you can do that will help optimize engagement.

Reaction Based Voting

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One of the most popular methods of engagement on Facebook is encouraging people to simply engage by asking them to support one of two choices by liking or sharing. Now with Facebook’s new reactions you could post two choices and say to Like or Love whichever one people prefer. You could even go a step further and offer 6 choices and assign a choice to each reaction. It’s a simple method of engagement that will spread your small business’ presence. Since Facebook doesn’t yet let pages post a poll this could be used to gauge what people like about your business. For example maybe a local ice cream shop post could ask what your favorite flavor is and say if it’s Vanilla react with the “Haha” reaction.

Fan Generated Content

Another method of posting and engaging with customers is by encouraging them to submit pictures of them with your brand and using the content they generated for post. This helps them feel appreciated as well as showing everyone else that you have real customers that are interested in your product. You could take it a step further and incentivize participation with a small discount or another prize of some kind.

Great Pictures

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If the small business you run centers around food or something that can be very photogenic like puppies, use it to your advantage. The picture above is from a small pastry shop and was posted to promote them on Valentine’s Day. People love to look at food, puppies, flowers, etc. so why not share some pictures of it. Better yet even if your business has nothing to do with puppies you can still find a way to work them into a creative post that promotes your brand. It also never hurts to have a variety of pictures of your products so that customers know what you have before they visit your business.

Creative Videos

One of the most effective methods of engaging with customers is creating a video for your page. It could be as simple as a tutorial of how to do something, or a cute and funny video promoting your brand. Videos are very impactful and a good video could be shared many times over. Sometimes the simplest things go viral, and for a small business you don’t need anything that will be seen by millions of people (though that may be nice!) you need something that gets seen by maybe a few hundred people or a thousand depending on your business.

Curate Content

One last thing of content to post on your Facebook page is content you curate from other sources. Share interesting articles that relate to your business, is a great way to do this. You can pass interesting information about the industry on to your customers and fans of your page. Curating content could even be noticing a post by a fan of the page and giving them a shoutout by sharing it.

If you’re looking for more insight into what a small business can post on their page check out some of these:

In this post by Wishpond, there are some examples of good Facebook post with some critique on how they could be improved even more.

Here is a post by Facebook  with some tips for promoting a small business leading up to small business Saturday and beyond.

 

Advertising on Facebook

Small Businesses Advertise on Facebook

Now that you’ve established a Facebook page for your small business, you can start thinking about the next step for your business. You will definitely want to post content on your page but posting on your page may not be enough. In today’s world, paying to advertise with Facebook could be critical to a business’ success. Don’t believe me? Just check out the success stories of some small business on Facebook here.

How Do Ads Look to Customers?

First thing to understand is how these ads reach customers. If you create an ad with Facebook, you can choose the kind of people you want to see your ad. You can set a certain geographic range, age, gender, or you can even target people by what they like and dislike on Facebook. Now if these ads find there way into a persons feed there are different forms the ad may take (seen below).

ad types

As you can see in the middle example, the ad mentions the friends that like the page, this is because people may be more inclined to like something if their friends are already. The ad at left would be an ad likely seen on a mobile device and the ad on the right is a small ad that one may see on the side of their Facebook.

Starting a Facebook Ad

Now if you decide to create an ad, here are the eleven objectives you can choose for your ad:

  1. Boost your posts
  2. Promote your Page
  3. Send people to your website
  4. Increase conversions on your website
  5. Get installs of your app
  6. Increase engagement in your app
  7. Reach people near your business
  8. Raise attendance at your event
  9. Get people to claim your offer
  10. Get video views
  11. Collect leads for your business

So you’re probably wondering how this helps impact who sees your ads. Well if you choose “promote your page” as your objective Facebook will show the ad to people that are more likely to like your page. However, if you wanted to choose the objective, “send people to your website,” it would instead target people that are more likely to visit your website.

Choosing an Audience

Once you decide on your objective, you’ll then be prompted to start choosing the audience you target. As a small business you may want to restrict the ad to your location, or maybe you’re more ambitious and can handle some national or even international attention.

From there decide whether your targeting a particular gender or age group. These should likely align with your current customer base unless you’re trying to broaden out beyond that. You can even develop a list of interests that you may want to target. Say you’re a small sporting goods store, try soccer, basketball, baseball, etc. as some interests you want the ad to target.

You can go a step further by deciding what connections to include, as mentioned earlier some ads can show users which of their friends already like that particular page. It can also ignore those that already like your page. It could be highly recommended to take advantage of the connections option to spread the word to people who may not have heard of you but have a friend that has. It can start a dialogue about your business between the two and lead to even more future customers.

Keep in mind you’re not just limited to this one ad, Facebook will always allow you to create more that can target different people in different ways. So while you may want one ad to target friends of people that like your page, you can also make another that targets the people who already do.

Budgeting for Ads

Next in Facebook ad creation is setting a budget for your ad. Facebook gives you the option of choosing an amount to pay per day for your ad or a lifetime amount that will cover your ad throughout the duration of your campaign. This means that while a pay per day budget will always spend the same amount every day, a lifetime budget may spend more one day and less the next day. To get an idea of how many people you will reach a day Facebook gives an estimate on the right side of the page that should look like the image below.

Screen Shot 2016-03-15 at 6.50.55 PMThere are more advanced options that depending on your objective may be slightly different. But in the advanced options you can decide whether to use the automatic or manual bid process and whether to pay based on impressions or clicks.

The automatic bid process means Facebook decides what ad will perform your objective with the most attention at best price. Manual you can decide what to bid on and when, this would be recommended for experts that know exactly what they’re looking for. Depending on the objective and what you decide there may be different things your paying for.

The two most common are CPC (cost per click) and CPM (cost per mille). CPC means you would be charged for overtime there is a click on your link for example. CPM would charge you based on how many people the ad was shown to. Facebook though will already have what they believe is the best option selected for you based on all the information you’ve given them.

So once you decide on a budget, based on understanding that there are a variety of different options for how ads work and how you pay for them, you will then be ready to create your ad.

Creating the Ad

First you should have an image in mind to use for the ad unless you have a video you would rather use. If you’d rather opt for an image, Facebook even offers design tips that you can find here. After you decide on an image or a video, you can then decide on the text you wish to include. From there you will see a preview of your ad and what it looks like for users.

Once you’ve created this ad you get to choose ad placement, which is fairly straightforward. There are only three options, the news feed for a desktop user, news feed for a mobile user, and the right column for a desktop user.

After all that you have created an ad on Facebook, this process can be as simple or as complicated as you want it to be. If you need more help navigating the complex world or Facebook ads and in particular understanding what you’re paying for here is an excellent offering from Wishpond.

 

Face-to-Face with Facebook

Market Share

Why you should care

Facebook is the preeminent social media site. It dominates the the social media world like no other, the graph above illustrates the lead Facebook has over the rest of the industry by comparing the market share of various social networks. Considering how large Facebook is, having a basic understanding of it is critical in today’s ever connected world. On Facebook you have the ability to reach millions of people, of course as a small business owner you shouldn’t expect a million likes any time soon, but the fact that its even possible proves how important Facebook is for a business of any size.

Facebook is a place where you can post important messages about your business along with photos, videos, and assorted other links to spread your business’ presence on the web. Users can like your page and share the things you post, thus spreading the word of your business to their friends!

The users of Facebook

According to Facebook there are some 1.4 billion users registered with the social media site, and the company estimates that more than 900 million visit it each day. As you can see in the graph below, the largest demographic on Facebook is the 20-29 years old age group. But that doesn’t mean the other age groups aren’t active in high volumes on Facebook.

Age

If you look at the next graph below you can see how many more adults in each age group use Facebook, compared to Instagram, Twitter, and Linkedin. While this may not include other important social networks, it illustrates the point that Facebook is the most used social network for all these different age groups. It also highlights that many adults 50+ years old favour Facebook significantly over other social networks.

Infographic: Social Seniors Flock to Facebook | Statista

When examined by gender, you will find Facebook is composed of more females than males. Females actually make up 54% of users while males make up 46% according to Statista. But don’t worry, as you can see below both women and men still use Facebook more than any other social media site.
Women More Likely to Use Pinterest, Facebook and Instagram; Online Forums Popular Among Men

Small Business on Facebook

A survey taken back in 2012 among small business owners revealed that most considered Facebook the most effective of social media sites. This was especially true for small businesses focused on the business to consumer side of things. Facebook was even considered the best for business to business marketing. But, the simple fact is no matter what business you have, chances are that Facebook will be the most effective social media for your business.

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First thing to know as a small business looking to get on social media, is getting on Facebook is easy. Some businesses may already have a following they don’t even know about, as seen below. This is because Facebook automatically generates pages for certain businesses based on people mentioning them on Facebook. As a small business owner you can claim this page as yours to help get you started, the page may already have content and likes from your current customers. If you by chance stumble upon one of these auto-generated pages after already creating a page of your own, you may claim and merge the auto-generated page with your own. Below are examples of a small business that is on Facebook versus one that is not.

Sidebyside

As you can see in the examples of pages above, whether or not you have a page yet, customers can easily rate and review your business. Now of course a benefit of having a presence on Facebook is the ability to respond to customers’ feedback and concerns. If you’re a business with an auto-generated page, and not on Facebook, these customers go unnoticed.

In future post we will go into more detail for how to interact with customers on Facebook and choosing what to post.

If there are a few things to take away from this first post it should be.

  1. Facebook has a broad appeal to all age groups
  2. There is a larger female than male audience on Facebook
  3. Seniors particularly favor Facebook over other social networks
  4. A business may already have an auto-generated page
  5. A business may always claim an auto-generated page