It’s the classic question—quality versus quantity. When it comes to Facebook and its notorious ‘Like’ button, are businesses better off with more ‘Likes’ or with fewer people who will take real action and support their business in the real world?
People want Twitter followers, but how many of them really know you, engage with you, or see 98% of what you write?
The numbers game is easy to fall prey to, especially for small companies, who can get consumed with the numbers. Every time you court a new fan or customer, or try to get someone to ‘like’ you, you are missing out on marketing to the people who already like you (whether on Facebook or otherwise).
Our advice here is two-fold. One, concentrate on properly servicing your current fan base. This paves the way for more efficient and trustworthy marketing (which is known in the old school world as word-of-mouth recommendations). And two, concentrate on offering a product or service that you are good at providing. If you do this, you will grow your business, no matter the number of likes or followers.
Facebook has tried to recreate word-of-mouth marketing with its like feature, but actually seeing that someone online has “liked” a business – does that impact an individual’s decision to support or hire that company? Pressing the like button takes very little time or effort, and everyone knows that, so there isn’t much credibility in it.
Business owners’ time might be better spent focusing on how customers are treated offline, because there is new emphasis on user-generated review sites like Yelp.com and Google Reviews. Those affect your business more because people feel they have an outlet for their opinions. It’s more interactive in people’s minds.
To engage followers, be sure you are sending them the right kind of information at the right time, and engage with them at least twice a week. Keep it brief. The better the content, the more people will want to engage with you and your brand. Focus on your story, and keep it simple. Sometimes more isn’t better.
That said, Facebook’s new Timeline for businesses has some great features. This new format brings a greater ability to better personalize the page (with the new cover photo approach). There are new ways to highlight, and give prominence to, posts. There is more real estate for photos and video (to make your page more aesthetically pleasing) and new admin tools for quick access to page performance and to highlight consumers looking for a response.