We'll get you noticed in the crowd
Where's the new go-to place for business and pleasure?
Not using the Events feature on your Facebook Page or Group yet? Then it's high time you did! Facebook's goal is to provide fans with the best, up-to-the-minute information about local events. This is good news for consumers and businesses. Events that you list on Facebook are automatically published to its sister app, Facebook Local, providing local businesses with a simple event marketing tool to help fill upcoming events.
Facebook's previous events app has been refreshed and renamed Facebook Local. Following its latest enhancements, it's likely to become everyone's go-to app for local events and finding places to visit.
A blogger's checklist: Fourteen tips to get your blog noticed
Whenever you start a new blog post, no matter how passionate you are about the topic, you must also consider your plan for getting it noticed.
I'd love to say there's a magic formula for sharing a blog post quickly and efficiently with your target audience and beyond, but there's no quick fix. The truth is, you have to put as much effort into publicising a blog as publishing it (if not more!)
But there's some good practice you can follow to attract readers, and I hope you find the following list of questions helpful. You can refer back to this blogging checklist each time you write a new blog post.
'Facebook Inspiration' supports Chris & Charlie's Adventures
I'm happy to receive book reviews of Facebook Inspiration any day of the week, but this one was particularly pertinent. Facebook Inspiration: 30 days of creativity for your page was first available on Amazon on 2nd March 2017, and I received this review the day after the book's first anniversary.
I wrote the book to help anyone with a Facebook page (or group) generate conversation and interest in their page, helping it reach a wider audience organically. So when I first stumbled upon Chris and Charlie's Adventures page, and saw that their page was relatively new, I shared details of my book with them. Having read A walk in the woods by Bill Bryson a few years ago, I was particularly interested in Chris and Charlie's walking adventure.
I was delighted that they offered to review it for me. And even more delighted when I received this detailed review, published originally on their website, Chris and Charlie's Adventures.
Eight low-cost tools every start-up business owner needs
I don't suppose you received any emails this week tempting you to a free trial of an amazing new app, did you? How many apps did you try out? And which ones are you still using?
Are you addicted to subscribing to new apps that you never have a chance to use? Don't feel bad - we all do it! When you first start out in business, you're pulled in all directions, so of course every minute is precious. Any extra app or tool that promises to help you manage your business more easily is enticing.
Most organisations can't do without email, Word, Excel and PowerPoint (or their equivalent), but there are thousands of other software apps you could add to your suite of business applications. Our digital world offers so much choice that even the smallest, simplest business can find it overwhelming.
I've been running my small business for more than ten years. I've tried hundreds of apps because I love productivity tools. But I've continually been refining my list and I now have a shortlist of eight tools I'd recommend to any small business owner just starting out or in their first couple of years of business. The majority are free or include a free version, depending on the features you need. I use all of them daily and they ensure I keep my business running smoothly.
Blogging comes easy when you're in flow
Does it seem to take you forever to come up with new ideas for a blog? And then actually getting it down on (digital) paper takes an eternity? Then I have a tip for you.
Write less. Snap more.
You might just prefer a more visual approach to blogging...
Market your business with 'Facebook Inspiration'
I'm delighted to announce that 'Facebook Inspiration' is now listed on Amazon. I wrote Facebook Inspiration especially for business owners who don't have a marketing department, but know that they cannot afford to ignore social media.
How to schedule a post on your Facebook page
Did you know that you can prepare posts for Facebook and schedule them to be published later? With Facebook’s handy scheduling feature, you can ensure your posts get maximum exposure by sharing them at the perfect time for your audience. This may not necessarily be the same time you’re creating your marketing content, if you're a night owl like me.
It doesn’t matter what type of content you’re sharing, the procedure for scheduling is the same. You can share a simple text update, a photo, a video or a blog link. In this example I'll walk you through seven simple steps for sharing a plain text update. Next time I'll show you how to share a link to a blog post you've written.
Creating a vibrant community on your Facebook page
Facebook business pages are a low-risk way for you to market your business. All you need is a profile photo and a cover photo for your page and you're ready to go. You should add your full contact details to the About page right away, but you can incorporate further information, such as Awards and Products, later.
Success is the sum of details. - Harvey S. Firestone
Since you don't need to invest a huge amount of time to start, a Facebook page is a must for any business. But creating a business page is only the first step. Next you must focus on creating a community of Facebook followers who appreciate your posts and find them valuable.
Highlight your value with a splash of hashtags
One of my favourite quotes from the book Oversubscribed by Daniel Priestley is:
What do you stand for? What do you stand against ?
Our values determine the direction we take and the decisions we make in our business. If you’re confident about the value you provide to your clients, those who value what you stand for will choose to work with you.
Businesses that are unclear about their value are easy to recognise. Their online marketing is smothered with hashtags, like hundreds and thousands. The content looks interesting, but it's a bit of a mess. Used sparingly, however, hashtags add a sprinkling of clarity to your messages on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram.
Don’t have a website? You can still find customers in Berkshire (or anywhere).
As a new, small business owner you know you need to market your business. How can potential customers buy from you, if they don't know you exist? But what if you don't have the budget right now for the professional website you dream of?
If your budget is limited and you don't have a website, there's still one way you can promote your services. Whether you live in Berkshire, in Buckinghamshire or indeed the Outer Hebrides, you can use one fabulous marketing platform for free: Facebook.
Effective marketing demonstrates your value to customers in a simple, clear way. Facebook is one of the best tools available for communicating with consumers. It's easily accessible, most people use it and its established ethos of liking, sharing and commenting is perfect for small businesses intent on raising their profile.
I am not a number!
"Get 4K American Likes on Facebook."
"Get me 1,000 likes on Instagram!"
"I need 3K Followers on Twitter."
Do these numbers make such a big difference to online marketing?