The blueprint for building a FREE Facebook marketing strategy
Here is a complete blueprint for building a free Facebook marketing strategy for your business without having to run any paid ads. Having a proper Facebook marketing strategy can help you to make more sales, build a loyal customer base, and grow your business, without having to pay a dime.
When people talk about building Facebook marketing strategies for businesses, they focus only on running paid ad campaigns. Of course, running paid ad campaigns on Facebook will help you to reach new customers for your business instantly. However, in this guide, we will discuss more on how to build a FREE Facebook marketing strategy that relies heavily on content marketing and inbound marketing concepts. So, if you are running a small business, following this particular Facebook marketing strategy will help you to save a whole lot on your marketing budget.
Building a FREE Facebook marketing strategy
Facebook is literally everywhere. And, there are around 2.5 billion monthly active users on Facebook, and the numbers are still climbing. Let’s put that in perspective. That’s nearly a one-third of the global population. Undoubtedly, this makes Facebook the biggest social media platform. Also, nearly two-thirds of the adult population use Facebook as their primary source of news. So, do you need any more reasons to start a Facebook marketing strategy for your business?
Facebook can help you to get in touch with new and existing customers
I bet you already know that marketing is all about reaching the right audience for your products and services. Since a lot of people all over the world use Facebook every single day, there is an extensive chance for you to find your target audience on Facebook too. So, it is the perfect place to get in touch with existing customers and new customers. And, that’s why starting a good Facebook marketing strategy can help you to bridge the gap between your products/service and your audience.
There are different ways to use Facebook for marketing
There are many different ways to use Facebook for marketing. It can help you to make sales, increase traffic to your website, and build customer relationships. Also, there are free analytical tools on Facebook that helps you to understand the customer behaviours and their likes and dislikes. Then, there are tools to measure your goals and achievements too. And, most importantly, if you need, you can even start using Facebook paid ads along with your marketing strategy to reach new and existing customers whenever you want, no matter your budget.
Facebook can be the cash cow of your business
By having a proper Facebook marketing strategy, you can make Facebook the cash cow of your business. So, when you start an online business, forget about everything else in the beginning, and focus only on Facebook marketing. Here we are talking about a whopping 2.5 billion audience. Of course, you will not be able to reach this whole audience. However, even 0.0001% of that audience is worth pursuing.
So, in this guide, I’ll take you through the complete blueprint of creating a perfect Facebook marketing strategy for your business for free. Let’s get started!
Facebook marketing course outline:
These are the topics that we are going to discuss in this guide
You can click on any of these topics to scroll down to that particular section.
Lesson 1 –
What are the different ways to build your presence on Facebook for free
Some people believe that Facebook marketing is all about ads, and this is not true. In fact, Facebook marketing is all about going inbound and building trust and loyalty among your customers. So, there are many other ways to put the face of your business on Facebook than running paid ads. And, most of these methods are super effective as well.
Lesson 2 –
How to set up a Facebook page?
The first step to start building your free Facebook marketing strategy is setting up a Facebook page. Today, every business needs a Facebook page to engage with their customers. So, starting a Facebook page is the first step of building a Facebook marketing strategy, and it is FREE and EASY. We’ll tell you the right way to set up a Facebook page in no time.
Lesson 3 –
The 6-step method to build a FREE Facebook marketing strategy for your business
Learn these six steps to building a failproof Facebook marketing strategy. In this section, we will tell you how to set marketing goals, ways to find your potential customers on Facebook, and how to find the best time to post on Facebook (basically, we will discuss everything that you need to know about building an amazing Facebook marketing strategy).
The most important lesson! –
What types of content that you can share on Facebook to grow your audience
After all, the core function of running a Facebook marketing strategy is to create and share the most engaging content that can attract your target audience. So, in this last lesson, we’ll discuss how to create some amazing content types that can help you to build a loyal customer base and to intrigue your audience to become paying customers.
Facebook for marketing – Lesson 1:
How to put the face of your business on Facebook
Marketing on Facebook is not all about running paid ads to get leads. In fact, advertising should be just one part of your complete Facebook marketing strategy. So, there are many other ways to put the face of your business on Facebook, even for free. In this lesson, we are going to discuss the best methods to build your presence on Facebook.
Method 1 – Using your personal profile for Facebook marketing
Probably you might already have a personal Facebook account. If so, promoting your products or services on that personal account is the easiest and most effective way to start a Facebook marketing strategy for your business. However, this should be done cautiously! Otherwise, it can do irreversible damages to your business as well.
Advantages of using the personal Facebook account for marketing
When you promote your business on a personal account, more than 90% of your audience will be the people who already know you. So, they can trust you (depending on how you did in the past). Apparently, “trust” is not something that every brand can pursue from the very beginning. Brands spend thousands of dollars to get positive customer testimonials and on Influencer marketing to build trust among their potential customers. So, by promoting your business on the personal Facebook account, you can easily overcome this barrier.
Disadvantages of using the personal Facebook account for marketing
However, there is also a negative side to promoting your business on a personal account. As we have mentioned earlier, unless you are a trustworthy person, putting your real face on Facebook can harm your business. Similarly, there are a few other considerations of using your real Facebook account for business marketing. Let’s have a look.
- It can limit your reach for a suitable audience
- Trying to sell things directly on the personal account can harm your brand’s authority
- Then, you will not be utilising the core features of Facebook marketing tools
- It can also indicate that your business is not “serious enough”
So, what is the right way to build a Facebook marketing strategy on a personal account?
Promoting your products and services on the personal Facebook account would work if you are starting a small business targeting mainly the local customers. For example, if you are starting a food truck, a local tailor-shop, or bakery that serves to the local customers, you can build an effective Facebook marketing strategy on using your personal account.
However, if you are targeting a wider audience (for example, a nation-wide or an international audience), trying to sell your products on a personal Facebook account can degrade your business’s authority. Therefore, in such cases, it is better to start using a Facebook page for your business.
Method 2 – Using a business page for Facebook marketing
Having a Facebook page is the most versatile way to starting a Facebook marketing strategy. By having a Facebook page, you can get access to all the powerful marketing tools on Facebook. Also, Facebook will automatically suggest your page to suitable audiences helping you to expand your organic reach. Below we have a whole lesson to teach you how to correctly set up a Facebook page to support your Facebook marketing strategy. So, we’ll go into details in a bit.
Method 3 – Using a Facebook group for marketing
A Facebook page is like having a website built on the Facebook platform. On the other hand, having a Facebook group is like hosting a discussion forum on this platform. By starting a Facebook group, you can build a controlled group of the target audience in your reach. One of the best things about Facebook groups is that since group members can post by themselves, your group usually stays alive and active, even without your involvement. So, it can grow by itself. We’ll tell you how to start a Facebook group in a bit.
Method 4 – Promoting employee advocacy for Facebook marketing
Another great way to promote your business on Facebook is through employee advocacy. You can encourage your employees to share their Worklife, company culture, and other good things about your business to create brand awareness. When they do so, they make your brand tangible by making it more relatable to your customers. So, your customers would start trusting your business. In fact, people trust employees than brands. Therefore, your employee’s posts on Facebook can act as testimonials for your business, which can be extremely useful for your Facebook marketing strategy.
Facebook for marketing – Lesson 2:
How to set up a Facebook page and a group
As we learnt from the previous lesson, having a Facebook page is the first step of starting a Facebook marketing strategy. So, in this lesson, we are going to learn how to set up a Facebook page for your business in no-time. There are just nine steps to set up a Facebook page. Let’s have a look.
Step 1 – Create a Facebook page
- Go to https://www.facebook.com/pages/creation/
- Choose the Business or Brand option. Let’s create a Facebook page for a business called Letto Cupcakes.
- Then, type in the name of your business and select the category of your business from the dropdown list.
- Also, add the business details like the address, telephone number, etc. You can change any of these details later, except the page name. In some cases, Facebook restricts the name changes of pages. Unless you already have a business name, make sure to brainstorm and add a proper name for your Facebook business page.
Step 2 – Add photos
Next, you can upload a profile picture (you can use the logo of your business) to your Facebook page. Keep in mind that this profile picture will appear everywhere as the first impression of your page. So, make sure to upload something that represents your business well. The best choice is to use the business logo as your profile picture. The recommended photo size of the profile picture is 180×180 pixels. However, it is better to use a 200×200 pixels image to improve clarity.
Btw, if you still don’t have a business logo, you can get a professional logo design from a freelancing designer under $30. Also, in most cases, this logo design includes a whole social media pack. That means you will get cover images with the same theme for Facebook and other social media accounts as well.
Then, you can add a cover photo for your Facebook page. You can usually use that space to notify your visitors about special offers, promotions, and events. Think of it as an advertising space for your business on Facebook. The standard cover photo size for Facebook is 820×312 pixels. However, keep in mind that the left and right side edges of your cover photo will usually get chopped off on mobile. So, keep the important parts of your image to the center.
Step 3 – Add a short description and other details
Now, you can add a description for your Facebook page to tell your Facebook visitors about your business. So, if someone doesn’t want to click on the URL of your website, they can still learn about your business from Facebook.
To add a page description, you can go to the Settings tab and select page info. Remember, this page description can also appear with search results. So, add a descriptive and attractive description to improve your organic reach.
Also, at this stage, you can fill up all relevant information about your business on your Facebook page. For example, you can add the website URL for your online store, business phone number, and locations etc. BTW, if you still don’t have an online store, here is a complete blueprint to start an online store.
Step 4 – Create a username for your page
The next step is to create a unique username for your business on Facebook. So, your customers can easily find your business. Also, this will change the URL of your Facebook page to a more meaningful one. In this example, our URL will be changed to https://www.facebook.com/lettocupcakes/
Step 4 – Add a page CTA
The final step of setting up your Facebook page is to add a page CTA (Call To Action) button. You can find this button right below the cover photo of your page. Having a CTA button will help your visitors to move on to the next step of their purchasing journey.
You can select any of the options given by Facebook to add as your CTA. For example, if you want your customers to visit your online store, you can add this button as a URL to your online store. Or, if you would like your customers to message you or call you, there are options to add them. So, think what would be the most popular choice for your customers and add that as your CTA.
Step 5 – How to get followers and likes for a Facebook page?
Now that you have set up the Facebook page for your business, you are almost done with the first step of building a Facebook marketing strategy.
However, there is no point of having a Facebook page unless you have a good share of voice from this page. So, in simple terms, you want people to visit and like your page. Then only you can get a chance to build brand awareness from your page. So, let’s discuss some practical strategies to get more followers, or more Facebook likes for your page.
Buying Facebook likes
Buying Facebook likes is a big no-no! In fact, it can harm your organic reach. Let’s see why.
Of course, having a large number of Facebook likes for your business can build some credibility for a new business. So, many startups tend to buy fake Facebook likes as an easy way to get thousands of likes for a few dollars. Even I used to do that too. However, there is a downside to this strategy.
Our main goal of starting a Facebook marketing strategy is to sell our products, not to get more Facebook likes. So, there is no point of getting more Facebook likes unless it can drive sales to your business. Usually, these likes are generated from click farms, where they create a large number of clicks from fake accounts. So, even though you get thousands of likes, none of these accounts will ever engage with your content. When you don’t get enough engagement rate for your posts, Facebook will automatically stop showing your posts even for the real followers of your business. So, this can harm the Facebook marketing strategy that we are building for your business. Therefore, do not buy Facebook likes.
Promoting Facebook page on site
If you already have good traffic to your website from other channels, you can simply encourage your site visitors to like your Facebook page. You can do this by adding a Facebook page plugin to your website. Also, you can start embedding the Facebook posts into your blog articles, so your blog readers can follow your page while they are on your blog.
On-site promotions at physical stores
If you own a physical store, you can still convert your foot-traffic to Facebook followers. You can either place a Facebook sticker on your shop window with the name of your Facebook page on it, and you can include the URL to your Facebook page on receipts and bills to encourage them to like your page.
You can find customised like us on Facebook stickers on Amazon. You can click on the below image to open the listing on Amazon.
Also, you can run a simple promotion at your store to get more Facebook likes from your store visitors. For example, you can offer them a special discount if they like your page on the spot or add a check-in to your store tagging your Facebook page. So, you can have a jump start for your Facebook marketing strategy.
Advertise your page to get followers
Apparently, advertising your page on Facebook and Instagram is one of the easiest ways to get a large number of followers for your page. The best thing about using paid ads is that you can use the Facebook audience insights tool to show your ads to the perfect target audience of yours. So, you can make sure that anyone who liked your Facebook page is someone who genuinely interested in your products and services. Anyway, we are not going to talk about paid ads on Facebook in this guide. However, you can check this guide about the best practices of running Facebook ads to learn more.
Facebook for marketing – Lesson 3:
The 6-step method to build a Facebook marketing strategy for your business
Here are the 6-steps to build a fail-proof Facebook marketing strategy for your business. This Facebook marketing plan will help you to piggyback Facebook, the juggernaut audience platform, and make more sales.
- Set goals for your Facebook marketing strategy
Define what you need to achieve by building this Facebook marketing strategy. Do you need more leads, or do you need to create brand awareness? Are you looking for ways to increase web traffic or leads? It’s your choice.
- Identify target audience demographics
Pinpoint your target audience. Remember, the effectiveness of your Facebook marketing strategy depends on how well you can reach the right customers for the business. Define your target audience; it can be soccer moms to graphic designers to cooperate-leaders. Don’t worry; they all are on Facebook.
- Create a Facebook content calendar
Having a Facebook content calendar will help you to schedule your posts in advance. So, there will be no gaps between your posts.
- Find out the best time to post on Facebook
Facebook algorithms are more focused on serving content that is related to the audience’s personal preferences. So, business’s get a less chance to show their content to target audiences (unless you pay them). Therefore, you can increase the chances of getting more reach by posting when your followers are active on Facebook.
- Schedule your posts
You can’t go online every 15 minutes to post on Facebook. You have a business to run. So, by scheduling your posts in advance, you can run your Facebook marketing strategy smoothly with good consistency.
- Start using Facebook chat bots to make sales
Similar to the previous step, you won’t be able to stay online 24×7 to answer the Facebook messenger questions. So, you can start using chatbots that can sometimes make sales on their own.
Step 1 – Set goals for your Facebook marketing strategy
The first step of creating a Facebook marketing strategy is setting goals for your plans. Then only you can measure your process against a reference to decide if it is successful or not. So, in this step, we will discuss how to come up with the right goals to build your Facebook marketing strategy.
Create a list of a minimum of three things that you need to achieve from the Facebook marketing strategy
Here are the most common goals that marketers expect from a Facebook marketing strategy.
- Raising brand awareness – 34%
- Increasing community engagement – 24%
- Sales and lead generation – 11%
- Increasing web traffic – 10%
- Others – 21%
Pick the right goals for Facebook to overlap with your overall marketing goals. Then, we’ll find out how to design your Facebook marketing strategy to achieve these targets.
Make sure your Facebook marketing goals are SMART
SMART (Specific, measurable, attainable, realistic, and timely) goals make it easy for you to stay in track throughout the process. So, when you set goals, make sure that they are smart.
goals – Set specific goals. For example, “growing your business”
is not specific enough. However, “growing your business through brand
awareness” can be a specific goal, because you can clearly define a
process to achieve that goal.
goals – You need to set measurable goals to evaluate the success of your
Facebook marketing strategy. So, if you are off the track, you can take the
necessary actions to correct yourself. For example, “Getting 20% of sales
through the Facebook marketing strategy” is a measurable goal.
goals and Realistic goals – Even though it would be lovely to set a goal
like “500% increase in sales through the Facebook marketing
strategy”, it won’t be an achievable goal. So, you will lose the focus and
give it up easily. So, make sure to set realistic goals based on your current
- Timely goals – Set clear timeframes for your goals. Also, you can add milestones if you want. For example, “25% more sales during Christmas time” is a well defined, specific, realistic, and timely goal for your Facebook marketing strategy.
Step 2 – Identify target audience demographics
Pinpoint your target audience. Remember, the effectiveness of your Facebook marketing strategy depends on how well you can reach the right customers for the business.
Choose the right target audience for your business
If you haven’t defined your buyer persona or the target audience for your business yet, take some time to select the right target audience for your business. Kowing the right target audience will help us to create amazing content that resonates with their way of thinking. Then let’s try to create Facebook audience groups that match with the demographics of your target audience.
Start using Facebook audience insights
Facebook has this awesome tool called audience insights that let us find the demographics and behavioural data of its users. Even though the audience insights tools is meant to use with the Facebook ads, you can use it without running any ads.
Using audience insights tools is not complicated. All you have to do is, go to the audience insights and select Everyone on Facebook to get a fresh start. Then, on the create audience column, you can find several tabs that define different demographic categories for your audience. For example, here, you can select target countries, interests, page likes, income levels, and many more.
So, spend some time on this tool and dig more to explore the right audience demographics for your business. This research will come in handy when we start running ads as a part of our Facebook marketing strategy.
Step 3 – Create a Facebook content calendar
Hey, don’t get overwhelmed by all these new fancy terms. A Facebook content calendar is a simple excel spreadsheet, where you can keep track of all the planned posts. There are a few advantages of using a Facebook content calendar.
- It helps you to maintain a good mix of content – When you can see a monthly overview of your posts, you can easily plan your posts to cover all popular content formats. For example, you can efficiently plan videos, photos, links, and polls without having your audience to get bored.
- You can align your content with holidays – You can increase the engagement for your posts by making them relate to popular holidays. So, you can plan your content to wish and greet your audience to keep things alive. Here is a link to the popular US holidays in 2020 to target with your Facebook marketing strategy.
You can download a sample Facebook content calendar template from here for free.
Step 4- Find out the best time to post on Facebook
Facebook algorithms are more focused on serving content that is related to the audience’s personal preferences. In simple terms, Facebook will not show your posts to your audience as much as they do for personal posts. So, you need to overcome this barrier to improve the organic reach on Facebook. Otherwise, you will have to depend on paid ads for your Facebook marketing strategy, heavily.
Therefore, the best way to overcome this barrier is by sharing posts when your audience is active on Facebook. For example, if your target audience is in the USA, you need to publish your posts when the USA audience is active on Facebook.
What is the best time to post on Facebook?
Finding the best time to post on Facebook is a simple thing to do. There is plenty of research done on this subject, and there are many data sets available online. As a rule of thumb, plan your posts between 6 AM to 6 PM during the weekdays, when your target audience is highly active on Facebook. However, you can check the above link to see how the best time to post on Facebook can vary depending on different niches.
Step 5 – Schedule your posts
When you start building a marketing strategy on Facebook, it is advisable to publish at least five to ten posts every single day. Well, obviously, you can’t log on to Facebook every hour to share a post on your page, because there are plenty of other things to do when running a business. So, to overcome this struggle, we can use the post scheduling feature on Facebook. You can use this option to schedule all your posts for the upcoming week and stay with peace of mind.
To schedule a post on Facebook, Go to the publishing tools tab and click on +Create to make a new post.
Then, instead of clicking on share now, select Schedule to select a date and a time to publish your posts.
Facebook marketing strategy – Lesson 4:
Examples of different posts that you can share on Facebook to grow your audience
So far, we have discussed some basic steps to help you set up everything you need to build a free Facebook marketing strategy. Now, in this last section of our Facebook marketing lessons, let’s have a look at different post types that you can share on Facebook to attract, engage, and delight your customers. So, in this section, we are going to discuss how to use inbound and content marketing techniques to support your Facebook marketing strategy.
After all, the core function of our free Facebook marketing strategy is creating and publishing content that can attract and engage your potential customers. So, let’s try to find out what are the most effective types of posts that you can share on Facebook.
Videos are the best content format for your Facebook marketing plan
In recent years, videos overpowered photos on Facebook by getting more than 60% higher engagement rate. This means you must have to start creating videos to post on your Facebook page to drive engagement.
But, don’t get overwhelmed by the idea of creating videos for your Facebook marketing strategy. In fact, creating videos for Facebook is much easier now. Now there are plenty of free video editing apps that you can use to create professional-looking videos captured from your iPhone. Also, cameras like go-pro make it a lot easier for you to capture amazing outdoor and action videos.
How to find ideas to make videos to publish on Facebook
Let’s think of an example. What type of videos can you create and share on Facebook if you are selling pet toys? Well, one thing you have to understand is, it doesn’t need to be always about the product you sell. So, rather than just focusing on your products, try to understand what sort of content that your target audience would enjoy most? In fact, if you keep posting only the content related to your products, you will lose the engagement of your audience.
Give what your audience would enjoy most
If you are selling pet toys, your target audience is most probably the pet lovers. So, they would love to watch pet videos. Therefore, by creating a good content mix with pet videos along with your product videos, you can keep your customers engaged into your page, while time to time promoting your products to them as well.
Search for trending ideas to create content for your Facebook marketing strategy
You can effectively use the tools like Buzzsumo to find the trending content ideas for your Facebook marketing strategy. Simply go to Buzzsumo and type in the keywords of your business to see what is trending on social media. Then, you can get an idea of what sort of content types are popular among your target audience.
Creating photos for your Facebook marketing plan
Apart from videos, photos are also a very successful type of post format for Facebook marketing. And, since it comparatively a lot easier to create photos, marketers are publishing an extensive number of photos daily to maintain customer engagement.
Needless to say, you have to publish highly visual photos to get the attention of Facebook users. After all, Facebook is a social media platform, not particularly a marketing platform. So, you need to create content that can grab the attention of users in a split second.
Also, when creating photos for your Facebook marketing strategy, make sure to upload properly sized images with the right proportions. Otherwise, the important information on your photos can get cropped-out on different screen sizes.
The ideal size of Facebook timeline photos is 1200×630 pixels image (Aspect ratio of 1.9:1). Also, populate all the text and important elements to the centre of the image.
Sharing links on Facebook
In my own experience, I have noticed that Facebook is kind of suppressing the reach for link posts. So, when you share your blog posts on Facebook, it won’t get the same amount of reach as the videos and photos.
However, sharing the links of your blog posts on Facebook is the easiest way to populate your Facebook page in no-time. So, we found a nice work-around to overcome the Facebook reach barrier for link posts. So, rather than simply pasting and sharing the URL to your blog post, you can upload a separate image, and wrap your URL around an engaging copy to encourage your followers to visit your post.
Other types of posts for your Facebook marketing strategy
- Sharing reviews –
Share your customer testimonials on Facebook. Customer testimonials with a link back to the reviewer’s account create an invaluable social proof for your business.
- Events –
Create and share events related to your business. It can about a special promotion time, a new product release, or whatever. So, your followers will get notified about the events related to your business.
- Sharing local content –
Sharing local content like events and news, can also boost the engagement for your Facebook page. However, stay away from controversial topics unless you can handle negative marketing for your business.
- Mention and tag local-groups, events, and businesses –
Mentioning and tagging local groups and competitors can expose you to untouched audience groups. Also, having a healthy competition is actually good for your business. So, time to time, engage with your competitors Facebook pages in a positive way and steal some of their audience groups as well.
- Running contests –
Running contests and giveaways are an extremely popular way to get more shares to your Facebook content. For example, you can start a contest where the comments with the highest number of likes would get some gift. So, the people will share your posts among their networks, giving you additional reach.
Best practices of creating content for your Facebook marketing strategy
Always make sure to research what is popular among your target audience. And, you have to create content to entice them. Also, you should use a good content mix with your Facebook marketing strategy. For example, you can share videos to gain engagement and to promote your products and services.
While you create and share videos and photos for your Facebook marketing strategy, measure the engagement levels to see what works well and tweak your content accordingly. Audience interests change over time. So, you will have to adjust your content types to match their preferences too.
Also, try to use humor (if it makes sense). After all, Facebook is a social media platform. So, you need to provide what people would like to see on this kind of platform. And, most importantly, don’t always sell on your Facebook page. It is better to use your Facebook page mainly to build audience engagement. Once you have an engaging audience, you can start selling your products. Remember, your Facebook marketing strategy should be built on two-way communication. So, you have to involve in the discussions actively.
Building a Free Facebook marketing strategy for your business – Let’s conclude (for now)
Starting a Facebook marketing strategy is the easiest way to find leads and start selling for any business. However, Facebook marketing is not only about running paid ad campaigns. If you can build an amazing content strategy on Facebook, you can start attracting new customers to your business on Facebook in no time. In fact, this is the cheapest way to find customers for your business too.
So, in this guide, we have discussed how to build a free Facebook marketing strategy, based on content marketing and inbound marketing concepts. By following this particular Facebook marketing strategy, you can get your business off the ground and start selling in no time.