Over a decade into its existence, Facebook is an increasingly dominant presence online. With over 1.7 billion active users faithfully logging in each day, and powerful new advertising features being rolled out each month, the platform has emerged as the clear winner in the social media wars.
If you’re looking to capture customer attention as a small business owner, Facebook is the place to be. It’s not without its risks, however. Though the vast majority of smaller firms maintain a Facebook presence of some sort, many of them fall victim to easily avoidable mistakes and fail to truly capitalise on the platform’s power.
In this piece, we’ll break down the 3 three Facebook mistakes to avoid in order to get off to the best possible start with Facebook as a small business owner.
- Not Tracking Results
At the end of the day, you’re dealing with a constant opportunity cost in terms of your time as a small business owner – you need to be hard-nosed about actual results when using Facebook. Though it’s incredibly easy to get content onto Facebook and engage with some sort of audience, unless that’s translating into bottom line results for your firm, you’re probably better off spending much of that time elsewhere in your business.
In order to have a clear picture of how effectively Facebook is working for you, you need to be carefully tracking time spent producing content for it, and then measuring that against actual revenue you can prove that the platform brought in. Fail to do this and it’s all too easy for Facebook to be a pleasant diversion, rather than a powerful revenue-generating tool.
- Not Learning The System
At this stage in its development, Facebook is an ecosystem of considerable complexity – particularly when you look at it as an advertising and marketing channel. Many small business owners don’t engage with the full set of features Facebook offers. They’re then naturally disappointed when they throw up a few half-hearted updates that fail to truly move the needle.
Before you commit serious time to Facebook, make sure you’ve really explored all the options available to you. Start by stepping through the excellent set of small business resources offered by Facebook for Business – a little time invested upfront here will pay off handsomely down the line.
- Not Putting In The Hours
Once you’ve committed to tracking your results and actually mastering the feature set Facebook provides, you’ll still need to put in the hours to actually pump out the right sort of content every week. This is often a significant challenge for small business owners – carving out time can be tricky when you’re overwhelmed with a flood of competing priorities.
Rather than dipping in and out of Facebook, you need to force yourself to schedule an actual block of time devoted exclusively to the channel. Within that block of time, you then need to take advantage of two key tactics: batch similar tasks and automate wherever you can – a range of powerful scheduling tools such as Buffer are available to help with the latter.
There are plenty of other pitfalls to avoid as you start getting to grips with Facebook, but avoiding our three main mistakes above will help you navigate those waters with confidence. Keep steering clear of them over time and you’ll soon be ahead of the vast majority of your local competitors!