If you haven’t already heard, video on Facebook is hot, hot, hot. And right now, it’s the best way for you to get more comments, likes, shares and followers—without paying Facebook for it.
If you’re trying to grow your following quickly or want to reach a new audience, Facebook Live is a great start.
Video of any form adds fantastic variety to your page and gives your followers a break from the usual blog posts, news articles and images. And, with Facebook Live videos, you add a personal touch to your brand. You show your unique personality, and who’s behind the company. It helps you attract more like-minded customers, and builds closer relationships with them.
And, believe it or not, a Facebook Live video actually takes less time to create than a standard blog post. I don’t know about you, but it can take me hours to write a post, edit it, find photos and make sure it all uploads properly. With Facebook Live, you just need to whip up a quick outline for what you want to say, then hit the “Live” to start broadcasting. That simplicity makes it a stellar addition to your content strategy.
And, most importantly, real-time video like Facebook Live helps you build rapport and trust with your followers, because you’re not hiding behind your brand. You’re out there, sharing tips, trends and updates with people who appreciate that you’ve taken the time to do so.
Bottom line? Video—and, in particular, live video—will go a long way in building your brand and creating more customers for your small business.
If you haven’t yet tried video as a marketing strategy, I have four super-simple ideas to get you off on the right foot. Some of these are great for Facebook Live, and some are great for any video platform you choose, live or pre-recorded.
- “How-to” Videos
Any company can create a how-to video. It doesn’t matter if you’re a business consultant or personal coach, a brick-and-mortar shop or an Etsy artisan. If you run a business, you know how to do something. And other people want to know how to do that thing too.
Let’s say you’re a fitness trainer. Well, there’s no limit to what you have to teach.
Demonstrate a specific exercise, proper form, or how to use a specific weight. Or, let’s say you have a stationery shop. How do different pens or ink types bleed on different types of paper? What kind of differences might you see between a Japanese-produced journal and an American one?
Oh, you’re an author? You don’t just have to stick to characterization or plot or other topics only of interest to writers: I bet you know a lot about finding inspiration, overcoming creative blocks, designing a productive workspace, or even how to make yourself work when you don’t want to.
The options are endless no matter what your area is, and you can get really creative. Keep a notebook with you and jot down questions your customers ask, thoughts you have about your products, ideas that pop into your head as you go about your day.
How-to videos can be short, simple, to-the-point and ultra-useful for your fans. The more tips you give, the more people will keep coming back to your page for more.
2. Tell Your Story
Nothing is better than adding a personal touch to your page.
Whether you know it or not, people really do want to hear how your business got started. You can talk about the details behind your launch, the history of your founders, the ups, the downs, all the fails and wins that happened over the years. You could also talk about a new developments, whether it’s a new product line you’ve added or a recent rebranding your company has gone through.
Sharing your story and the story of your company—whether it’s you doing the talking or one of your long-time employees—helps your followers get to know the people behind the brand. It makes your business more relatable, more personable and more trustworthy. You’ll attract a tribe of customers because you’re willing to be a little vulnerable and share something personal.
3. Host a Live Q&A
Is there something your fans are dying to know about your business, your products, your people, your history? Or do they want to dive deeper into your specialty and expand their own knowledge?
They almost certainly do: and that means you should jump on Facebook and host a live Q&A session. As you stream your live video, the people who are watching can ask questions in real time. It creates instant dialogue with fans, and, as an added bonus, every time they post a question or click “like” or “love” on something you say, that helps your video get seen by even more people.
A Q&A session can also help you learn a little more about your fans, in turn. You might learn more about what activities, subjects or gear they like. You might find out which topics interest them the most. You might even hear surprising things about what they think about your brand. You can then use this information to improve your marketing. You’ll get inspiration for future content to post, and you might even get ideas for extra services you could offer.
Brands who are willing to take the time to answer questions from their fans build loyalty, trust and strong relationships—and those things go a long way in helping you grow your business.
Interviews are also a fun way to use Facebook Live. You could interview an expert, someone high-profile in your field, or a customer who is just getting started and is becoming a true enthusiast.. You could even interview another business owner who just came out with a product your audience might be keen to hear about. Reaching out to your peers to ask them to join you for a Facebook Live video not only helps you deliver value to your followers, it also builds important links within your industry network.
And at the end of your video, don’t forget to encourage listeners to ask some questions. It’s a great way to keep the conversation going.
Over to You
Like I said, video is hot, and you should jump on it soon. And the fastest way to do that is by picking up your phone and sending out a quick Facebook Live video to your fans. Think up a simple, quickie idea you can do right now—show off an exciting bit of new gear you got for yourself! Explain the origins of a conversation piece you keep in your store or office! Sneak-peek or tease a brand-new product or release! Introduce an awesome staff member!—and then just do it! Seriously, now!
Once you’ve got your first live video out there, tasted that instant connection as the likes roll in, and answered a few incoming questions on the fly, you’ll definitely be eager to dive in again as soon as you can.