If you’ve already got a business Facebook page for your solar company, that’s awesome. Being the largest and most popular social media site you really need your company to be on Facebook as a supplement to your most important online tool, your website.
In a future article I’ll talk more about how to use your Facebook page most effectively to engage with customers and drive business to your website, but for now I’d like to speak to newbies to Facebook about why you should set up your Facebook page.
Let start with the reasons first.
Why Social Media?
As Curren Media Group CEO Erik Curren explains in his newly released book The Solar Sales Leap, it’s long past time for the solar sales model to leave the door-knocking, cold calling, and ad-buying of the 20th century and enter into the more powerful online opportunities of the 21st century.
That means having a kick-ass website — good looking, optimized for search, mobile responsive, and filled with great content. It also means engaging on social media like Facebook, Twitter, Google +, and visual sites like Instagram and Pinterest, along with other digital venues.
If you’re not doing anything on social media yet, a great place to start is Facebook. The large audience of Facebook users, together with its rich visual look and a host of options (photo galleries, video stories, calls-to-action) acts as a powerful, centralized portfolio of sorts, making it a mini-site that’s easy to navigate with the added benefit of being a two-way street for conversation— your customers can easily ask questions or follow along with your latest projects or news.
So if Facebook is already so great, isn’t it enough? Why have a website when you can just have a Facebook page?
Erik tackles that in his book in more detail but in short, Facebook is more like the convenient interactive online Yellow Pages to your website — it helps spread the word about your website and business, but it itself is no replacement for your website and business.
Your business page on Facebook remains owned by Facebook, whereas your website is the digital home of your business, with far more possibilities to tell your story, educate visitors, and gather the data to turn visitors into leads, prospects, and ultimately customers.
Facebook is great for teasers and awesome for quick views into who your company is.
It’s really good for sharing upcoming live events that you’ll host or attend (whether online or in person), and at this point it’s just become a necessary tool in the B-to-C relationship, and even somewhat in the B-to-B framework.
So embrace Facebook, and use it well (as I’ll explain in an upcoming post) but whatever you do, don’t cede your brand and online profile exclusively to their territory. Not only will you not be able to build the customer relationship well enough, you won’t own it — and if Facebook disappeared for some reason, your Facebook-based business connection and followers would too!
Other social media sites offer different opportunities, though all share in common a way to engage with customers and potential customers and to drive those customers back to your website, while being, like Facebook, owned by that company and subject to its whims, successes, and failures. But we’ll tackle those other venues — Twitter, etc. — in an upcoming post.
For now, plan to start with Facebook and in my next post, we’ll talk more about how to do it.
— Lindsay Curren, Creative Director, Curren Media Group