Published on November 11th, 2014 | by Derek Overbey0
How to Build Your Social Media Audience from the Ground Up
Like a talented musician playing music to an empty room, you need to attract an audience if you want to be heard. The same goes for social media – You have to grow and engage an audience in order for people to ‘hear’ all of the great things about your business. But, you’ve got to start somewhere. In this post, we focus on building your Facebook and Twitter audiences from the empty room, so to speak, so let’s get to it!
Growing Your Audience on Facebook
Invite friends to Like your page
Sometimes you get by with a little hep from your friends. In this case, your Facebook friends. After you create a business Facebook Page, you’ll want invite your personal friends to “Like” it. Friends are likely to see, Like, share, and comment on your content, which also increases the likelihood that your content will show up often in the News Feed. Here’s how:
Please note: It’s easy to invite friends to Like your page, however, keep in mind that Facebook is also consistently testing various page designs and layouts, so your options may differ depending the layout Facebook has given you. If you don’t see either of these options, let us know and we’ll be happy to help!
1. You can either A) Go to your Business Page and click the three dots just to the right of the Message button.
Or B) Go to your Business Page and click on Build Audience found in the upper right hand side tool bar.
2. Click on Invite Friends and a drop down menu or pop up will appear. Here, you can scroll through your personal friends and click the “Invite” button. If you’ve previously invited them to Like your Business Page, it’ll indicate so by displaying a check mark. If you click on Search All Friends, you have the option of narrowing your friends down by city, club, those you’ve had recent interactions with, family, school and more.
Promote your Page
1. If you want to attract people who don’t already know about or Like your business, promoting your Facebook page is a (paid) option. To make a clear distinction, this option is to create an ad promoting your Business Page so more people see it and may Like it. You aren’t necessarily buying or guaranteed Likes.
There are websites that promise to provide a large number of Business Page likes, but we strongly advise against using them. Why? As we outlined in a post earlier this year, paying for followers may have a negative impact on your engagement, as these users are not actively interested in your business. Uninterested users don’t interact with your posts as often, which affects when and how often others see your content in their News Feeds.
An ideal scenario is to use Facebook to help supplement your growth in addition to other activities, like trying to connect to existing customers to help build your audience over the long run.
With that, here’s how to promote your Business Page:
Either A) click the Promote Page button on the left-hand side.
Or B) Under the option Build Audience (as seen above), select Promote Page.
2. A pop up titled “Get More Page Likes” will appear. You’ll want to upload an image, (or simply use your Facebook Page cover photo that automatically populates), fill out sections for location, interests, age and gender that are applicable to your business, as these are the people you’re targeting to Like your page. Determine your budget (you can opt for as little as $5 a day) and schedule how long you want your Like campaign to run.
Growing Your Audience on Twitter
Maximize Twitter Search
In your Twitter account, you will see a search box in the top right. To find people that you want to follow, enter a search term that’s relevant to your business. In this example, we used the term “small business.” Click the magnifying glass icon to initiate the search, and narrow the results by clicking the different options on the right-hand side. Choose people to narrow your search to Twitter accounts of people rather than businesses. You can also choose from “everywhere” or “near you” to further narrow your search.
You can then browse for people who may be interested in your business by reading their bios. Following them and engaging with their tweets may initiate and encourage a follow back. This method isn’t guaranteed, but it will provide you with a targeted list of folks that you can start to build relationships with.
Promote Your Tweets
If you have some budget to dedicate towards building your audience, like Facebook, Twitter also provides a paid option. Just follow these steps:
1. Set up a Twitter account for your business.
2. Set up a Twitter Ads account for your business.
3. Enter your new ads account and click on the campaigns link in the upper left-hand corner.
4. Click on the Create new campaign button and pull down to Followers (Promoted Account)
5. When the new window opens, Twitter will walk you through the setup process for your promoted account. You can choose your audience by interests or followers, or if you have your own data (like a list of email addresses) you can target potential followers more specifically. Just like Facebook, you can choose all the parameters, then set a budget and you will be provided an estimate on how many followers you can expect.
One of the key differences between the Twitter and Facebook is that brands on Twitter can proactively follow accounts that could be interested in a certain product or service. This is not the case on Facebook. Because of this difference, you may have a better chance of building an engaged following on Twitter if you choose to go the paid route.
So there you have it – A quick and easy overview of a few ways to build your social media audience on Facebook and Twitter from the ground up. For more social media tips, get the VR Buzz.
© 2014, Derek Overbey. All rights reserved.