The best way to think of your web presence is in terms of sales vs PR. If your website is an unambiguous advertising space, then your Facebook business page is your public relations representative – attracting people to your property without giving them the hard sell. Having said that, it can be hard to judge how to increase awareness in a ‘generalised’ way without becoming vague or unfocused. Here are some tips on how to maximise the business potential of Facebook:
A lot of B&B owners just display a photo of their property as their profile picture on Facebook. Doing this may seem pleasingly informal, but it doesn’t really make their Facebook presence feel distinctive – it just looks like countless Facebook profile (i.e. non-business) pages. Think about designing a logo for your property and displaying that instead. Even if it’s really simple, it’ll stand out because it’s unique.
- Having said that, do have lots of photo albums. Well chosen photos sell properties. Tagging photos is incredibly helpful too. Take photos of your guests (as long as they don’t mind!), create a “Guests” photo album and then tag the photos with the relevant guests’ names. Now their friends on Facebook will be alerted (albeit indirectly) to the existence of your property.
- Below your profile image, restrict your menu items to 4 or 5, so navigation doesn’t become confusing. Try to stop your Facebook page becoming cluttered.
- Creating special offers and promoting them on your Facebook page will make people more inclined to return frequently to it. If you offer promotions in association with local businesses you can also show that you’re contributing to the local economy – an admirable thing to do in these financially straightened times.
- Mention upcoming local events on your Facebook page. If you attend any of these events, write a brief description of what they were like and post some photos of them. This keeps your page fresh in a way that is relevant to your property but – once again – not too “hard sell”.
- If your Facebook account is linked to your Twitter account, use Selective Tweets. Otherwise, when you put a picture on Facebook it’ll tell Twitter like this: “I’ve just posted a picture on Facebook.” Not very informative! Only post links with a proper description of what each one is about.
- You can put films on Facebook too. These don’t have to be professionally made adverts. It could just be a fun ‘home movie’ filmed with a digital camera – or, once again, film of a fun local event you have just attended.