Followers = Trust. The more followers you have, the more people will trust your brand, because others do. And, the more followers you have, the more your message reaches people. But, you can’t deposit followers into the bank. It isn’t just the number of followers that matters…it’s the type of followers. Are they engaging with your brand? Are they customers, potential customers, or potential brand ambassadors?
On Facebook, it can be more difficult to grow your audience, because you can't just follow people in hopes they will follow you back as you can on other platforms. It tends to be the most difficult platform to grow an audience on.
But, we've got your back. We've compiled a few ways to gain "healthy" followers on Facebook:
Invite people to like your page
Inviting people to like your Facebook page is simple. Click "Invite friends" and Facebook allows you to either select all of your friends, or individually choose who you want to invite.
Build a Powerful Profile
In order to attract the right kind of followers and potential clients, it is absolutely vital to create a professional looking Facebook business page and personal profile.
Your Facebook’s business page should inform clients and employers what you have to offer. As for your personal Facebook profile, if it is viewable and not set to private, you want to carry that professional presence across this profile as well. Check out our blog on how to Build a Professional Business Page and Personal Profile.
Use Facebook Ads
Take advantage of Facebook Ads to increase your followers and engagement. You can easily run “engagement ads” which increase your visibility across Facebook. There is also an option to choose page likes as your objective. “Conversion ads” are useful too because if users see the content and like it enough, they will engage with it. This could potentially lead to likes, followers, and sales.
Facebook ads can be highly targeted to your specific audience, based on location, age, and other demographics like pages they like or recent searches. They are also inexpensive, as you choose your budget and how many days you want to run the ad. Unsure if it will work for you? Run a small $20 targeted ad to see if this works for you.
Post visual content
It is proven that people are more likely to engage with a captivating photo or entertaining video than a long paragraph of text. That doesn’t mean your visual content should not have a caption, though. Use those words to draw them in further after you’ve caught their attention with an educational video, funny meme or inspirational quote graphic.
Visual content drives engagement and boosts interaction, so use it often and consistently
Host a giveaway
A fun way to drive engagement and boost your follower count is to host a giveaway. You must offer a prize or reward that they can’t resist. Try giving away a free product, mystery box, discount code to your store, or a free tutorial.
By requiring entrants to follow your page and tag their friends in the comments in order to have a chance at winning the giveaway, you’re boosting your followers and engaging with more people. This gets the conversation going and more likes, comments, and shares happen, so your reach greatly expands.
You don’t want to lose followers after the giveaway has ended, so engage and respond as much as possible. It is vital to show that you’re personable and friendly and that you value them as followers.
Add follow buttons to your website
Link Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, LinkedIn, and all of your other profiles to your website by adding follow buttons..
On each social media profile, link to your website and your other profiles. Visitors to any of your platforms should be able to easily navigate across your entire digital footprint.
Add a pop-up
If you’ve ever browsed on a website for a few seconds or were about to exit, you probably received a pop-up asking you to sign-up for their newsletter or subscribe. You can test this type of pop-up out on your website by asking people to like/follow your Facebook page. Use a tool like OptinMonster to install this feature on your website.
Include a Facebook follow button on all of your marketing emails. Also add it to your email signature within Outlook, Gmail, or whichever provider you use.
When new users visit your profile, they want to see that you are active and engaged, and providing valuable content. Scheduling posts in advance can keep you strategic and consistent and save you the trouble of scrambling to post on the spot. When you have time, sit down and plan your posts for the next week, two weeks, or even a month. The beauty of scheduling Facebook posts is you can schedule a lot, for a long time.
Write out the captions, hashtags, and include any links and visuals you need for each post. Then, set the time and day you want it to go live.
Engage with the Community
Posting captivating content with consistency and frequency is great, but you should also take the time to remind your audience that you’re conversational and that you care about your audience. Respond to comments and mentions as quickly as possible when they appear on your posts. Answer questions and engage in a discussion with people to appear more personable and approachable to potential followers.
Get involved with the community by finding other accounts and posts related to your niche and engage with them as well. Leave thoughtful comments on posts, videos and images, and try to start a conversation.
Share interesting content to your profile, if it’s relevant and something you believe your audience will want to see, to keep the conversation going as much as possible. You want to be an active member of the community on Facebook to ultimately strengthen bonds with followers, clients, and potential followers.
Keep Your Profile Professional
If you do share, create or engage with content, make sure it is professional and on-topic. Don’t make disparaging remarks towards anyone in posts or comments. Avoid using slang, profanity, suggestive phrases, racial slurs or derogatory language of any kind. Keep dialogue open and friendly. Everything you post online is visible to anyone at any time. If you want to create and maintain strong relationships with your followers, it’s best not to post something that will be potentially offensive to them.
A rule of thumb to follow: if you wouldn’t say it in-person, don’t say it online.
Keep Your Content Visibility Open
You want people to be able to publicly share your content, so don’t set it to private. The goal should be to circulate your content far and wide to every niche possible on Facebook, to broaden your reach and increase your followers.
Connecting with your audience through Facebook Live drives engagement, which can increase followers. People are actually drawn to watching Livestreams on Facebook, Instagram, and other social media sites. This tool allows you to connect with your viewers on a personal and fun level. You can engage with them, answering questions and showing off products and tutorials.
Many videos that go viral on Facebook are actually Facebook Live videos. Try hosting weekly or bi-weekly Livestreams, and advertise to your followers to keep coming back for more. For a rundown on all the ins-and-outs of using Facebook Live check out our Blog: Tips for Going Live on Social Media.
Partner with an influencer
Influencers with a large following can help you to boost yours if you collaborate on a product, design or campaign. Sometimes they’ll agree to do shout-outs or give you a mention out of the goodness of their heart, but often, you have to pay for their recognition.
Finding niche pages who are willing to do the same thing for no real payment other than returning the favor can also help drive your follower count because it gets the word about your content out there beyond your immediate audience.
Shout-outs, share-for-shares (S4S), and mentions
Another way to have influencers, promoters, brands, companies and entrepreneurs mention you is by mentioning them first. Mention them in your posts, perhaps referencing that they are influential to you or inspirational. Don’t overdo it, but occasionally it can be very effective, as they often will comment or mention you in reply.
Having customers, ambassadors, supporters and loyal-fans give shout-outs can also show a loyal fan base. Others will see someone raving about your brand or product and begin to follow you to learn more.
As for S4S, many groups and pages are established within niche communities to support one another. Likes, comments and shares groups are extremely popular on all social media platforms, because it’s often about collaboration rather than competition. Many accounts choose to band together to support one another because they understand the value of reaching a larger audience.
Start by searching for other business accounts and profiles within your industry or market and make acquaintances with them. Comment on their content and slowly build friendships and network with others who may be willing to help promote you.
As with any piece of your social media strategy, growing followers takes time. Use your business analytics tool to see what is working and don't be afraid to change things up if something is not working. Most of all - be patient!
The significance of creating an online presence, especially on Facebook, is crucial to running a successful business. We hope you found these tips useful to grow your Facebook followers, and curate a healthy flow of supporters.
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