The most popular strategies for a small business to use the internet to generate leads and sales was to focus on Search Engine Optimization (SEO) which is a strategy of getting your website top show up in the top 10 results on the search engines like Google for various keywords or phrases.
The other popular strategy was Pay-Per-Click advertising (PPC) which is a paid form of advertising on the internet when a small business can bid how much they are willing to pay when someone clicks on their ad when it appears in the search results and on various websites.
Both of these strategies work great and many small businesses use them with great success.
However it seems that where is a new kid on the block, like all technology the internet is a forever changing environment.
Over recent years social media is becoming a stronger and stronger force when it comes to marketing on the internet.
Possible the most popular social media website today is Facebook, in fact Facebook has grown so big and powerful that Google has opening admitted saying that they fear Facebook and that Facebook could be a real threat to the Google Empire.
The statistics about Facebook are simply incredible and cannot be ignored.
Facebook currently has over 400 million users, 50% of their active users log on to Facebook every day, the average user has 130 friends and people spend over 500 billion minutes every month on Facebook.
Clearly this is a pool you should be fishing in.
How to Grow Your Small Business Using Facebook? There are 3 main areas where you need to focus on in Facebook: Your Profile: This is your personal profile is where you would have your closest friends and connects, the limitations with your profile is that you can only have a max of 5000 friends, the advantages are you can send an email directly to these people which will usually get a much better response than a status update.
However the main advantage of your profile page is to add people of influence to your friends list.
A person of influence is someone who has over 1500 friends and preferably in your target market but that is not essential.
The quality of your initial friends will determine your success on Facebook.
"Like" Pages (a.
a Fan Pages ): These are pages you can create based on any topic and you can have as many as you like, Ideally you should have a 'Like' page based on your business and this is where you should be directing everyone to, they will have to 'like' you page to access the content on it.
The best way to direct people to your page is to mention people of influence in your status updates with a @nameofinfluence by doing this it will show up on the profile pages of all the friends of that person of influence.
Warning - do not spam you will rejected really fast in Facebook, provide value and interesting opinions.
The content that gets the best response is positive, uplifting material.
With "Like" Pages you can have as many 'likes' you can get however you cannot email these people.
Groups: These are kind of a combination between your profile and you're 'like' pages.
Groups allow members to be more interactive with each other, forming discussions, and sharing more.
You can have as many members join a group you like and you can send an email or message your members straight to their Facebook inbox.
When you first log in to your profile you will see two sections "Top News" and "Most Recent" to harness the full power of Facebook you want to get your updates and content to be shared and liked the most, this way your content will appear in the 'Top News' section more often which will give your more traffic.
Making Money: 99% of the time you are not going to make money directly on your Facebook pages, profile or groups, to convert your fans, friends and members of groups into leads and customers you need to direct all these people to your website where you can place them into your sales funnel or subscribe to your mailing list.
This is the real secret to marketing your small business on Facebook.