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Three Secrets to Planning your Facebook Content

 

In this week’s episode, I’m going to talk to you about using Facebook to create engaging content so that you post things that your ideal client wants to see. 

Now, I know your time is a precious commodity these days, and as small business owners, we have so much to do, so it’s time to really think about your Facebook content strategy. Whether you adore social media or think it’s a necessary evil Facebook can be the gateway to your tribe, to the people who need to hear your message and who can benefit the most from it. With, well over 1 billion daily users around the world, your audience is there. It’s just a matter of crafting your message and getting engagement on your posts. 

It may sound like a daunting task, but once you get to know your ideal client and pinpoint the best time to reach them online, the rest of the process becomes easier. 

Episode Highlights:

  • (03:47) You need to know your audience
  • (08:01) Learn how to track your metrics 
  • (13:40) Give people content that they’re actually craving 
  • (16:01) Check out what others in your niche are posting
  • (18:05) Think about what caters to your audience
  • (19:46) The three P’s
  • (22:16) Create themes for each day of the week
  • (22:50) Use time blocking for creating content
  • (24:18) The perfect time to post 

 

 

Transcript

Hello, and welcome to the Midlife Business Show with Suzanne Mountain. This is the podcast that celebrates all those of us who are building a business during our middle years. I’m an ex corporate girl who started my business six years ago in my fifties. And I’m loving it. This podcast is here to inspire you with conversations with other entrepreneurs about the messy and magical ups and downs of this period of our lives. Plus, I’ll be sharing simple, actionable step by step strategies to help you build a business with impact and a life that you love

 

Suzanne (00:43):

Hey there, and welcome to this week’s Midlife Business Show. Today, I’m gonna talk to you about using Facebook to create engaging content so that you post things that your ideal client wants to see. Now, I know your time is a precious commodity these days, and as small business owners, we have so much to do so it’s time to really think about your Facebook content strategy, whether you adore social media or think it’s a necessary evil. Facebook can be the gateway to your tribe, to the people who need to hear your message and who can benefit the most from it with well over 1 billion daily users around the world, your audience is there. It’s just a matter of crafting your message and getting engagement on your posts. It may sound like a daunting task, but once you get to know your ideal client and pinpoint the best time to reach them online, the rest of the process becomes easier.

(01:44):

So grab a cuppa, sit down and have a listen and let’s talk about this some more. Now you might be thinking, well, I’ve already created my ideal client avatar, but if you created it, say three years ago, I suggest that you stop and think about that. You want to work with the most current information and a lot can change in your market in two or three years. In fact, if we look back over the past two or three years back to 2019 buyer behavior has changed significantly. I certainly see that in my ideal client group. And I’m sure you would see it in yours too. If you stop and take a look before we get started, I don’t want you to stress yourself out over making the right decisions, especially when it comes to the best days and times to post on Facebook. Your audience is unique just like you.

(02:39):

And there are simple guidelines to get you started. Nothing is written in stone. You can make changes as you see fit. And don’t compare too many notes with friends because their results and plans may be vastly different from yours, social media and all your content plans are meant to be fluid so that you can go with the flow with your audience and adapt to what they’re thinking and what they’re feeling. Just focus on the content they need from you and you’ll soon learn to love the connections that social media brings. So let’s get started today. I’m gonna talk to you about the number one thing you need to know before putting together a Facebook content strategy. We’ve all been in that place where you post something spectacular in your eyes on Facebook only to have it ignored. Sure, super cute puppy pictures and funny baby videos always get likes and shares, but generally speaking, those won’t help you grow your business.

(03:41):

Your marketing strategy is only as strong as your foundation. So you need to know the basics, namely your audience, before you can decide what and when to post on Facebook, you can post the most amazing content all day, every day. But if the right people aren’t seeing it, you’ll never get that coveted engagement. You need to know your buyers and everything about them. You need to prove to them that you relate to their problems and that you’ve done your homework inserting yourselves into their lives. With a strict intent of just making money is disingenuous, providing them with a product or service that helps them solve a problem because you care is authentic. And the only way to build a sustainable business that works with your sole purpose. So creating your ideal client avatar is obviously the place to start. You need to know the details about your ideal client.

(04:41):

So creating an avatar is like creating a composite of that person who would be most likely to buy your product. This avatar does not have to be based on anyone. You know, however, you will want to include demographics such as gender location, education, family, life, but the main focus needs to be on the pain points. What is the pain that you are solving for them? What will make them turn to your service for help? That’s the key really that in itself is actually more important than some of the demographics. Once you have your avatar created, compare these demographics and answers with the features of your product. So you may discover that certain features don’t mesh well with your ideal client demographics. Maybe your price point is drastically higher than what your ideal client can afford. Maybe your price point isn’t high enough and your ideal client questions your value.

 (05:46):

If you already have a Facebook business page, check out the audience insights page to take a look at who is already looking at your page. This can help you get a better understanding of your ideal client. Looking at this in reverse, comparing these audience insights may give you a flash of inspiration for a new service that will help these people. So now that you know who your ideal client is and what they’re looking for, you can customize your Facebook posts more easily. You’ll have a much better idea of the content they need to hear. And you can then experiment with different formats to spread your message, discussing a hot topic issue during a Facebook live might be the engagement boost you are looking for, but also try creating a written post about the same subject for those who don’t like watching videos or create a simple infographic to further express your message, then test these formats, to see which ones resonate with your audience the most.

(06:52):

So you can continue creating that form of content going forward. And just to reinforce that tip from earlier, your ideal client will change over time. So revisit your avatar, demographics, at least annually. If you are aware of changes in your market, you can then address them with your services and your marketing strategy. Now you’re running a business. So it’s important for you to have some sensible metrics to help you understand what’s happening. Now you can follow all the gurus and their advice for best times to post online, as well as what kind of content will get engagement. But your business is different from those of the gurus, even those of your peers. And with a good reason, you are unique and will attract a unique blend of people into your ideal client pool. So you create an ideal client avatar and a strategy mapped out.

(07:54):

How will you know, if your posting plan is actually getting results, you need to track your progress. And that means learning how to track your metrics. If that makes your head spin. Don’t worry, once you’ve created a process for tracking your metrics, you’ll know immediately, which posts are performing, which times of day are best. Even what days your audience responds to the most. 

Remember, it’s not about the quantity of posts. It’s about the quality of the posts and the engagement they get. You don’t want to post for the sake of posting. That’s wasted time that you could be devoting to another money making task in your business. You want your posts to get results, don’t you. And that means engagement. Engagement is what makes social media work. You’re interacting with your audience. You are proving your worth by sharing your expertise and other people are lapping it up.

(08:50):

Once they get to know, like, and trust you, they will tell their friends about you and they might even buy your services. And none of this tends to happen without engagement. 

So I’m talking about Facebook metrics now, but be aware that every page of your website that offers a call to action should be assessed each month too. Here are some of the most important Facebook metrics you should track and what they mean. 

So engagement, what does that actually mean? It means whenever someone reacts to a post, shares it or leaves a comment counts as engagement. This is your opportunity to learn about this person and to see if they felt your ideal client criteria. And to start a conversation in the hope of building a relationship. The easiest way to track engagement is by looking at your Facebook insights page regularly.  

Reach: this metric simply means how many people are seeing your posts.

(09:54):

As we all know from experience Facebook, like to update and change their algorithms quite frequently, which often means fewer people. Seeing your posts to track those numbers, go into your Facebook insights and click on reach organic slash pay. As the name suggests organic reach includes everyone, accept those who see your paid advertising. Not every post will have wonderful numbers, but tracking reach allows you to analyze what worked in each post. So you can re replicate it going forward. Impressions. While this may seem similar to reach, impressions are the actual number of people who have seen your post. This metric also includes those who have seen your post multiple times. Why are impressions important? Impressions measure how viral your post has become? 

Don’t worry about those multiple impressions. If you subscribe to the theory of seven, where a customer won’t buy, until they’ve been exposed to your message at least seven times, then multiple impressions can land you a new customer more quickly.

(11:08):

Video metrics: Video is powerful and Facebook encourages its use. So this is gives you one more set of data to track included in these metrics are video retention. Are your viewers watching the whole video or just a portion and video engagement? Is your audience interacting during your videos by liking or commenting? Also, do they allow use of auto play or do they actually click on the video to play it? 

 

Facebook ad metrics: Now you may be running Facebook ads. Facebook ad metrics are important if that’s the case. If you are spending your hard earned money for advertising tracking reveals your return on investment, why spend more money on ads? If they’re not performing, you’ll find your Facebook ads metrics within Facebook ads manager, and these metrics include click through rate (shorten to CTR). That means how many people are seeing your ad and click through to the landing page.

(12:21):

Another one of those metrics are cost per click CPC and cost per impression, CCPM. These are the two most popular ways to pay for ads. With cost per click, you pay only for those who click your link.  With cost per impression you are paying for every thousand impressions. 

Now I would suggest that you create a document to actually list down your metrics that you are going to be tracking. This could be a spreadsheet, and I suggest you pick a specific day each month to log this information. I always do mine on the first day of the month or the first working day of the month. And I set aside two hours to go through and track all my metrics. So let’s talk about the easiest way to create irresistible and engaging Facebook content. As we already established earlier, guessing at what type of content to publish on Facebook is futile.

(13:25):

If you don’t know your ideal client, but even knowing all the data about your ideal client, doesn’t fully explain what content they’re looking for. So how do you make sure Facebook content is actually engaging well? It’s by giving your people content that they’re actually craving, instead of guessing what that might be, try asking them. Instead, every conversation that you have, whether in person on the phone or via social media is a chance to learn what your ideal client wants, but instead of reading between the lines for subtle clues, be more direct and ask the question, take notes about every conversation, especially if they’re having difficulty finding specific services, programs, or information, make someone explain that they love videos because they can multitask while listening, or maybe another person will fill you in on the content that other coaches in your market offer so that you can improve yours, pay attention to social media post from others in your niche and their comments are clients requesting certain information that isn’t being produced or easily found.

(14:37):

Can you find a hole in what other coaches are offering that you can fill with your top notch content conduct, a content audit odds are you already have a lot of content out there? And some of it is probably quite popular. Did you cross promote that popular content on Facebook? If not, why not start by looking at your own blog posts, email newsletters, and thinking about which posts have received the most like shares or comments, write down the topic, the content type blog or video, or any other notable attributes. IE, was it a trending industry topic or about a current event or was it a personal story or maybe it involved a case study. Now look at your audit results with the most popular topics and formats. These are the topics that resonate with your audience. You’ll notice the same thing with the formats. Have your written blog posts more comments than your videos or vice versa.

(15:46):

Even if you’ve only blogged in the past, try recording a video about one of the popular topics and see what type of engagement you receive. You might be really surprised, another easy and reliable way to know what to post is to check out what others in your niche are already posting about and seeing great engagement from their ideal clients. Now, this doesn’t mean that you are going to copy what they’re doing, and it doesn’t mean that their ideal client is exactly the same as yours. However, it can be really, really useful. 

Remember that plagiarism is never acceptable, copying and pasting anything, including blog posts or graphics that do not belong to you is copy infringement and highly unethical. That’s a surefire way to ruin your credibility and your business. 

Instead, simply observe which of your competitors’ topics receive the most engagement from their audience. Your audience is different.

(16:47):

You’re not out looking to poach customers from them. You are merely researching and testing. If the same topic will be as popular and engaging for you as it was for them in the corporate world, we call this competitive analysis where you look for what’s working for your competitors, and what’s not knowing this information can enlighten you about what marketing efforts may be worth pursuing and which others are better ignored just as your audience is different. Maybe you have a different perspective on the same topic. If you see one generic topic is performing well for your competitors, put your own spin on that topic. Or maybe if you hold a different perspective and it’s quite controversial, share that instead, go further by drilling that general topic down to fit your specific industry, discuss hot button topics from your industry as a way of showcasing your expertise while keeping your audience in the loop.

(17:52):

You’re not copying what others are saying. You’re crafting a response to an inspirational idea. Also, don’t just concentrate on watching other coaches or people similar to yourself. Think about who else caters to your audience, but offers different services. Check them out in an indirect competitor and do the same content audit. In the end, you are looking to be inspired by this competitive analysis, not to copy your competitor strategies, exactly your brand and voice need to be authentic. Have no fear. Your audience members will call you out if you are not being authentic, or if there’s even a hint of plagiarizing. Also remember that this research needs to be done on an ongoing task just as your brand and voice will evolve over time. So will your competitors continue monitoring their content, engaging within indirect competitors and stay on top of the industry happenings once you perfect your processes for doing research and creating all your Facebook content, you can then delegate these tasks to your VA.

(19:05):

So all you have to do is give your stamp of approval on your posts. So let’s talk about the secret to creating super hot content again and again. Now you’ve collected a ton of intelligence about your ideal client and the content they love. It’s time to figure out how you’re going to uniquely and memorably deliver that content, developing a content creation plan and keeping a content calendar are two easy ways to keep your social media marketing on track without inundating your audience with too many sales pitches or meaningless posts that go ignores. 

So here’s Secret Number one, use the three PS, all social media content will fall into one of three PS. 

It will be personal, it will be purposeful, or it will be promotional. 

Striking a balance between these types of posts is a safe way to grow engagement and relationships with your followers.

(20:08):

Too many of one type will bore your followers. And they’ll think you’re only out to make a buck or two, if you post too many promotions. 

So perhaps today examine your current posts, which of the three PS does your content fall into? 

Are you getting engagement? 

Are you lacking a balance across all three? 

What feels most natural to you to create? So start there with what’s natural, but don’t get stuck in your comfort zone. You want to find a balance between what your people love and what you are able to create on a regular basis. Why not try stepping out of your comfort zone and add a different type of post to your rotation. Now next, remember that social media marketing is similar to business networking in that you are not trying to make a sale in the first conversation you have with someone. 

(21:08):

Instead, you are learning about that person’s business. Asking questions and thinking about if this is truly someone who can benefit from your services, not everyone will be part of your ideal client pool, but all of these conversations are worthwhile and networking conversations can lead to a referral, more introductions, or they themselves may say yes to you down the road. 

This process is all part of building relationships, which is so vital to businesses these days. 

Does it make more sense now why you want to balance your social posts? Use a variety of the three PS. So your followers get to know like, and trust you. 

If you’re constantly posting hard, sell posts, you’ll chase prospects away instead of worrying them into your inner circle. 

And of course, if you never post sales posts, people will not know about what you have on offer and we’ll go buy from someone else. 

 

Now, secret number two is one that many of my clients find really useful.

(22:14):

And that’s about creating themes for each day of the week. Sticking with a daily theme, makes it easy to keep your post balanced, have some fun with throwback, Thursday or motivational Monday, create your own themes based on your business and your audience. Then go one step further by creating a custom hashtag. Then you can encourage your audience to use the hashtag in their own themed posts. 

 

And Secret three is one that’s good for using in your business in general. Use the time block message for creating content. One popular time management tool that helps create content fast is the time block method. Simply block off a chunk of time, such as two hours and get to work time blocking is especially helpful when recording videos, when you can set up your equipment one time and record four or five videos in that session. Now, if you’re a writer who gets in the zone, you can easily write three blog posts and a selection of Facebook posts in that time.

(23:28):

So think about doing it in a time blocked fashion. Now that you know what messages you want to share, it’s time to decide how to share them. Facebook is a multipurpose platform and there are several ways you can share your content written posts, pre recorded videos, live videos, reels, and now stories. This is when knowing yourself and knowing your ideal client avatar comes in. What type of content do you want to create? What type do you know your ideal client world of our, again, it’s about finding the intersection of the two. You won’t know until you experiment with all types though, the only sure fire way to figure this out is through action. Okay. So let’s talk about the perfect time to post for maximum exposure and engagement. As I said earlier, social media gurus are plentiful and each one has their own takeaway on the perfect time to post for maximum exposure while these are terrific starting points, don’t think this is the definitive time to get engagement from your audience.

(24:42):

Every market has its nuances and you’ll likely find some exceptions to the posting rule while there’s no blanket magic time to post on Facebook for crazy high engagement, with a little experiment, you can find the magic time for your business. Generally speaking experts agree that businesses should post on Facebook once a day at a bare minimum post at least three times a week. Firstly, let’s use a little bit of common sense if your market is working moms, then most likely won’t be online until the early evening hours after dinner and bedtime routines are completed. So posting to those people at midday will likely get lost. However, if you are targeting small business owners who work from home, anytime during the regular nine to five will likely work for you because these people will take breaks from their work and possibly log into Facebook to schedule their own posts and see yours in the process.

(25:49):

This is why knowing your ideal client is so important. You’ll know what type of job they work in and you’ll understand their responsibilities outside of work. And these details will help you narrow down a timeframe where they’ll be online. Second, take a look at your own calendar. You should be available during the same perfect timeframe. So you can respond quickly to questions and comments. This one step makes you appear approachable because you’re able to have these short conversations in real time. Your followers will understand that you are not just a robot scheduling post. You are a real person with a passion for helping them with you being available in real time engagement, you’ll increase the like factor and others will see how easy you are to speak with. Why is catching people in real time important? Because we all know that posts get lost due to the Facebook, algorhythm.

(26:51):

So it’s a risk to assume someone will see your post hours later. It’s also easier to carry on conversations in real time because you’ll receive notification when someone responds to you, which usually entices people to click on their notification immediately. Also, when you see a post from eight hours ago, you’ll be less tempted to leave a comment or ask a question based on an older timestamp, and let’s not forget your Facebook lives. 

Do you want to speak to an empty room or would you like for you to watch you and ask questions in real time with a little bit of experimentation, you’ll discover the perfect timing for your Facebook content distribution. So you’ve done the hard part. Now it’s time to make sure that you keep up with it all, take all the data that we’ve talked about, that you’ve collected and create an editorial calendar listing.

(27:49):

What days of the week you’ll post, what times you will post, what topics you’ll post on which days and which formats will you create. You’re not only going to want your content plan on paper in the form of an editorial calendar or actual posting schedule. You’ll also want to make sure you can easily track what’s working. If you don’t want it on paper, then Trello is a great system for you to use that will help you create your content calendar. Now you can streamline your planning by using a social media editor calendar, keeping your social media post organized and well balanced is essential to making your Facebook posting process easy. You’ll create all the content in advance and set it up in your content calendar. Then schedule it in a third party management platform. Many social media management systems have calendars built in. So it’s really a two step process.

Speaker 1 (28:53):

You can use the Facebook inbuilt tool for scheduling your posts. It’s currently called Creator Studio, and you can do that for free and schedule your post to Facebook, including videos or another one that you pay for that. One, I have used is called Social Bee. Social B goes one step further in making your Facebook posting easier. It allows you to create evergreen content that you load into your library. And this is automatically scheduled at various times in the future. It’s almost like set it and forget it, except you still need to show up in person to engage with your followers. If your budget at the moment, doesn’t run to having a social media management platform right now, then create a simple Trello board strictly for your Facebook content. You can always upgrade to a paid programme at a future date when it comes to tracking your results, keep it simple and use the tools you have at your disposal.

(29:59):

If you are paying for a platform, use those metrics and spend time really understanding what you can track and what your results mean. Once you have your results, determine if you want to make changes with the hopes of increasing your engagement, that could be trying a different format or trying posting at a different time of day. Perhaps a particular day of the week is awful for your audience. Remember nothing is written in stone, so make changes and continue tracking the results of those changes. Once you’ve created your calendar, the process will be much easier. You’ll only have small tweaks here and there. So your focus will be creating your content and tracking the results every 30 days or so. 

So that’s what I wanted to say to you today about Facebook. I’d love to hear what you think and how you get on and what metrics you currently track within your business. 

Please feel free to email me suzanne@suzannemountain.com. I hope that you’ve enjoyed this episode. If you have, please take a moment to rate and review the midlife business show. And please also tell your business buddies about it so that we can spread the world and look forward to speaking to you again next week. Why for now?

Speaker 1 (31:23):

Okay. That’s a wrap for today. Thanks for listening. Please subscribe, rate, and review the midlife business show. And if you’ve enjoyed it, tell your business buddies all about it. Bye for now.

 

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