Facebook executive’s top five social media tips for small businesses

Limited by time and resources, Australian small business owners often view having a presence on social media channels as a daunting task.

Recent research by the Australian Communications and Media Authority found that only 26% of Australian SMEs used a social networking channel for marketing.

However, with over 12 million Australians on Facebook, setting up a page for your business is a simple and cost-effective way to be more discoverable, build relationships with new and existing customers, and drive in-store or online sales.

It’s easy to set up a Facebook Page – you can get started here:

Once you have a Page, here are five easy steps to amplify your page and help grow your business:

1. Say more with less

When posting Facebook content, keep updates to 90 characters or less. People are more likely to browse short updates, so it’s no surprise that posts following this rule see 60% more engagement.

2. A picture says a thousand words

Engage fans visually by using photos. If you’re stuck on a subject, try snapping pictures of your latest products or personalise the page with pictures of yourself and your workplace. Posts with images receive 120% more engagement than those without.

3. Be searchable

Make sure your company’s address, phone number and hours are up to date on Facebook. As more Australians start using Graph Search, a product that enables people to find information through the filter of their friends, having relevant and up-to-date information on your page will help your business be more discoverable.

4. Find the right audience

When sharing a post, make sure you’re targeting the right people. Select the asterisk on the right side of your post to determine the audience receiving it by age and location. For example, do you own a local floral shop? Use Facebook’s targeting option to drive increased traffic around Valentine’s Day by targeting people in a relationship in your city.

5. Timing is everything

Generally speaking, the greatest number of users are logged onto Facebook from 9 to 10 p.m., but this may vary depending on your business. If your business is testing a new flavour of ice-cream on Saturday, schedule a picture to post Friday night and Saturday morning to drive increased traffic to your store.

Mia Garlick is head of policy, Australia and New Zealand, Facebook.

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