By, Jackie Lackey, Encore Visions CEO and Creative Director
1.) Start Early
Just because Facebook offers immediate and timely communication to your audience doesn’t mean you should take time for granted. Planning your social marketing campaign is a must to achieve effective results. Multiple posts or paid campaigns, spread out over a 1-2 week period is ideal per sale. Use a calendar to jot down when those posts need to take place and what the focus of each post will be.
2.) Great photography is not only important – it’s everything!
You have one shot to make a great first impression and if your pictures do not accurately represent the pigs you are offering or do so in a way that you’re proud of, you’re doing yourself a huge disservice. Invest in a good camera, great lighting and be patient. Fast shutter speeds are a must with baby pigs so you can shoot quickly, but bad lighting can cause the pictures to be blurry. Make sure you have as much natural light as possible or find a way to add bright, artificial light to your picture area.
If you don’t have a camera and use your phone to picture hogs, click here for a few tips on how to capture the best pictures from your smartphone
3.) Business pages are a must for proper promotion
While you can reach many friends and family using your personal page to promote a sale, you cannot target a specific demographic or geographical location on a personal page like you can a business page. If you are just starting a business page, invite all of your friends from your personal page to like your new page and consider investing in a “likes” campaign to build your audience prior to sale season.
4.) Don’t Tag Everyone You Know – that’s annoying
Tagging people who are also involved in the industry can be an effective way to spread the word. However, tagging people who are not directly involved in your business, that particular pig or have interest in the content you’re putting out there is rather annoying and just bad business. Think before you tag!
5.) Understand the different Facebook campaign options
Facebook offers a variety of paid campaign options that help disseminate your posts through the Facebook world and deliver to people who will be most interested in your content. In order to receive the best results, campaigns need to run for at least 3-5 days. Here a few ad campaign options you should consider:
- Likes campaign
- This is the best way to encourage viewers to “like” your page. The value of a “like” is that you can constantly communicate information with this person after they choose to become a follower on Facebook. When setting up this type of campaign it is important to truly target those with the same interests. Interests may include “showing pigs, pig show or agriculture extension”
- Post Engagement
- This is the campaign to use when you want people to see what you have posted on your timeline and have them engage by liking, commenting or sharing. For sale pictures, this is an excellent way to promote your offering.
- Web Clicks
- A web clicks campaign is great when you want to drive people directly to your website or the online sale site to view more information. If you are not concerned about increasing your traffic on your Facebook page, rather pushing viewers to the page where they will receive the most information – this is the campaign you want to use!
- Video Views
- If you’ve taken a video of a featured lot, a video views campaign is the most optimized way to promote a video and will receive the greatest return.
Most campaigns can be highly effective for as little as $35-$50, but keep in mind that Facebook is an auction platform and as sellers begin to use this tool, it will become more competitive. If any of this is overwhelming or you’re just not sure where to begin, ask for help with advanced social advertising tools.
6.) Engage your audience
This is your chance to be creative! When you ask your social audience to participate in your promotions by liking, sharing, commenting, etc., you naturally increase the amount of exposure of your online promotion. Be unique and make sure whatever incentive you offer is realistic, easy and aligns with your brand.
7.) Be responsive!
Social media is simply a conversation. You should respond to questions and comments the same way you would if that person was standing in front of you. While it may be a relatively “new” way of communication, you are choosing to start the conversation – don’t be rude by not responding! Check your messages, respond to comments and show some appreciation to those who are engaging in your message. There are many of people watching how you handle your business and the more likely you are to help or respond via social is a perceived indication of how you will respond to customers in person.