Michelle's Question of the Week
Is Facebook working for you?
Since we have covered Instagram and how to utilize hashtags, we've decided to evaluate Facebook and discuss how to use this outlet as a tool to grow your business. Facebook is run much differently, focusing on the text more than the image itself.
Dyan Brisson has been trying to grow her business through Facebook for years and has found it to be difficult. "My Facebook page has over 200 likes and I swear, the same five people see my posts," she explains. Like Instagram, Facebook has an algorithm. Ever notice that you have 500 friends but you see the same 20 people on your newsfeed? Unfortunately, working out the system of the algorithm on Facebook is not as easy as Instagram. We do not have an answer on how to fight your way through it so that viewers can see your posts more. Unless those viewers are following you, or your page, they most likely will not see it.
The best exposure I personally have gained on Facebook was using the promotional ads. Every once in a while, I will pay Facebook no more than $10 to create an ad for my page. You can pick a location, the interests you want your audience to have, and so forth. It isn't costly. You have complete control over how much you'd like to spend, which is the upside. Of course, the more money you spend, the more exposure your page will get. I have seen positive outcomes with this tactic.
It's also difficult to get your family and friends to share it. This can be discouraging at times because it feels like a lack of support from your peers. However, your friends and family are a powerful tool, and they may not know this. It's not so much that you're asking them to support you, but to -
support local businesses.
Since launching this collective, I have a new and deep respect for all of the creatives in the world. Going forward, I will go out of my way to support local businesses rather than shop at Walmart or Target.
My best piece of advice when trying to get family and friends to share your work or your page is to simply ask them. Send them a quick message and say, "Hey! I'd really, really appreciate it if you would share my last post. The more shares there are, the more exposure I get which will help my business tremendously!" Of course, I wouldn't do this for every single post. This can get annoying. Even writing a Facebook post for the masses may help in this endeavor.
My second piece of advice would be to make art friends. Art friends are the best; they understand you and they appreciate you. Collaborating with them can help immensely because they are not only supporting and promoting you, but you are doing the same for them! How great is that!?
And finally, my third piece of advice would be to join other Facebook groups. I'm currently in Color Crush Creative and The Inspire Network. Both Facebook groups are very different but they offer the same services. Color Crush Creative is an art group that runs workshops and discussions. This is a chance to meet fellow artists and learn together! The Inspire Network is strictly "networking", but from the comfort of your own cellphone.
I've never been comfortable with networking, or attending networking events. It can be awkward, and it can sometimes feel like you're using people to get what you want. It's like that saying,
"It's all about who you know..."
The Inspire Network is dedicated to women in the Newcastle, UK area who are either entrepreneurs, women looking for work, or women seeking something in particular and hoping to find it within the group. For instance, one member posted that she needed a cake for an upcoming party, but it's a bit short notice, and asked if there were any bakers in the group who would be able to perform this service for her.
Every week, the founder of the group will pose a question for the members, which is a great way to introduce yourself, your Facebook page, and get to know the other women in the area.
While Instagram is more "eye candy", Facebook requires more hands-on work. Dedicating a small window of time to join other groups, chime in on discussions, and put yourself out there may help in this journey.