How Facebook Local Can Get You More Customers
Watch out Yelp and Foursquare, Facebook Local has arrived! Today, Facebook launched a new app that lets users find local businesses along with all the cool things happening in their area. According to Facebook product manager, Aditya Koolwal Facebook users will be “able to find what to do, where to go, where to eat, or what you need — all recommended by the people they know and trust.”
Here is how the app works:
Facebook Local’s home page (shown below) displays shortcuts at the top of the page to view nearby restaurants, cafes, drinks, attractions, nearby, friends, following and more. The next section is called “tabs”. The tabs contain For You, Events, and Guides. The For You tab contains all the events that users responded interested or going. Events tab will display all the local events in the users’ local area for the next 7 days and the guides tab is the best way to explore interests.
The Discover feed (displayed below) shows what’s popular with users friends and top suggestions. If users are traveling, they can easily change the city to see what’s happening locally.
5 Tips for Local Businesses: Be Found Inside Facebook Local
#1: About Section
Visit your Facebook page and double check the information in your About section. Are your address and phone number current? If you are a restaurant, did you add your menu?
#2: Create Events
If you are not creating events on Facebook for your local business, start! If you are creating events already, create more events! The new Facebook Local app has categories for events, parties, food, networking, causes, art, shopping, fitness, music, drinks, theater, religion, health, literature, home, gardening, film, comedy, and wellness.
Before your event, post regularly to get people excited. After the event, encourage people to share photos or videos, thank them for coming and promote your next event.
Here are a few examples of local businesses using religion, drinks or shopping as categories for their upcoming events:
#3: Category, Description & Keywords
Use a location that corresponds to a Facebook page or Facebook-suggested location so people nearby can discover and learn about your event through the Facebook Local app. Most importantly, select a category from the drop-down menu, include a description that tells people more about your event and don’t forget to add up to three keywords so your event can be recommended to people interested in those topics.
#4: Ask for Reviews on Facebook
The best way to ask a customer to leave a Facebook review is through email. If you are collecting email addresses from your customers, then it’s simple. Craft a post-purchase or a post-visit personalize email. Mention their name, thank them, and ask them how their visit went and if they have any suggestions on what you could do better. Don’t forget to tell them that you want to hear from them. Their opinion matters to you! Provide them with a direct link to your Facebook page. Simply replace the username in this link https://www.facebook.com/username/reviews/ to give your customers a direct link to your reviews page.
If you need to turn the reviews feature on your Page follow the steps below:
- Navigate to the settings tab of the Page.
- Under general settings click edit on reviews section
- Edit the option to “Allow visitors to review this Page” or “Disable reviews”
- Click save changes after making the selection
#5: Tell People to Check-In
Most people that walk into your local business have a smartphone. It only takes a couple seconds for them to check-in to your business. Encourage them to do so. In exchange for checking in, offer them an exclusive discount. You can also remind visitors about exclusive discounts on social media, your website or your print advertising materials. Don’t forget to capture your visitors’ attention inside your location by placing signage in highly visible areas. Facebook provides you with free window stickers, printable table tents, and cash register stickers templates. Get your Facebook check-in marketing materials here.
Encourage your employees to check-in as well. Their friends and family will see the check-ins and might consider dropping in as well.