So far in our 7-part social media series, merchants should have gained a handle on the basics of social media, including specific examples of what to post on social media. This is the first of four platform-specific guides that will give merchants the tools they need to grab customers’ attention and keep it on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and YouTube.
With more than 2 billion active monthly users, Facebook is the largest active social network on the planet. That’s a lot of eyeballs and a lot of potential customers waiting to discover your merchant’s brand.
The good news is merchants don’t need so be experts to make Facebook work for them.
For most potential clients, Facebook will be their first point of contact with your merchant. That means it is extra important that all pertinent information pertaining to their salon is present and accounted for, and easily accessible on their Facebook profile. They can ensure all their bases are covered by including:
- Business Name
- Physical Address
- Phone Number
Tip: While these might seem self-explanatory and somewhat obvious, what might not be is that Google monitors these three pieces of information to verify a business’s website and to link it to a Google My Business page.
- About Section – This is where merchants really get to tell their story: how they got started, why they do what they do, and why customers should care.
- Website URL – Not only does this make it easier to drive customer traffic to a salon’s website (where bookings/conversions are more likely to occur), it also legitimizes the business.
A complete profile offers potential customers more information and allows them to more easily decide if they want to do business with your merchant’s salon.
Not only is a salon’s Facebook cover photo the largest piece of visual content on their Facebook page, it’s the first thing people see when they visit. That’s why it’s important to put serious time and effort into creating a quality Facebook cover photo. Merchants should ask themselves these three questions when evaluating their Facebook cover photo:
- Is the image high quality? (Nobody thinks a grainy photo is pretty.)
- Does the image represent the brand?
- Is the image up to date? (Never changing the cover photo is the cardinal sin of Facebook cover photos.)
- Bonus Question: Will followers be impressed? (Would you be?)
Merchants will never get a second chance to make a first impression, so make sure this is a good one.
But what if merchants already have a business Facebook page set up and are choosing to rebrand? While there’s never really a redo of a first impression, merchants can roll out their rebranding with a bang.
While the cover photo is a compelling visual representation of your merchant’s salon, the next place potential customers will probably look is their timeline. Users have the ability to pin one post to the top of their business page. This allows merchants to give more context coupled with another visual with which to introduce their brand.
Once Upon a Time
Storytelling is an art form as old as humanity itself and a powerful tool in marketing. “[It] is a fundamental human experience that unites people and drives stronger, deeper connections,” according to James Warren, founder and CEO of Share More Stories, a storytelling insights company. By presenting a brand through storytelling, companies can elevate the meaning and impact of the brand and better convey how their brand fits into customers’ lives.
Stories can also be used to transmit knowledge and meaning through observations and first-hand experiences. Consumers are not only looking for different experiences but different delivery. Storytelling not only offers a different, more creative approach to marketing, but it gives them a completely new way to be introduced to your merchant’s brand.
At the end of the day, facts tell, but stories sell, and consumers are more likely to connect with a business if they tell stories customers can connect with. It’s important for merchants to dig deep, get personal, and humanize their brand.
We’ve alluded to some of these tips in previous posts, but they bear repeating:
- Visual content generates more engagement than text-only posts, and since engagement is the name of the game, visual content is a core concept to any Facebook marketing strategy. Bonus Tip: Video content outperforms every other medium on all social channels.
- Know the audience. This will help merchants set the tone and overall personality of their Facebook page.
- Provide valuable content. Give clients a reason to keep following.
- Post regularly and consistently. Take advantage of Facebook scheduler to plan posts and set them to publish ahead of time. Bonus Tip: Facebook business pages have built-in analytics that will help merchants identify when their target audience is online and most likely to see and engage with posts. It also offers insights to assess how well a post performed after the fact.
- Interact with clients online; respond to comments and inquiries. This will help boost merchants’ social media authority and build long-term relationships with clients.
- They say variety is the spice of life. Vary the type of content being posted. While visuals are compelling, your merchant’s Facebook timeline should not be restricted to images. Too much of a good thing gets boring. Some great post ideas for salons could include special promotions, client testimonials, before and after photos of happy customers, how-to tutorials/tips and tricks, and product spotlights if your merchant’s salon has a retail component. Get creative.
Never Stop Learning
Whether your merchant is a seasoned social media pro or just getting their feet wet, there is a wealth of information out there to help salon owners get their social media game on point, starting with what’s available right on the platform.
Facebook Business has resources and free courses to help merchants learn exactly what the platform offers and how to make the most of the features available to them. There are also scores of webpages and blogs just like this one aimed at helping those new to the social media world get on their feet and hone their skills to better their business.