[intro]Before you begin, you need to have completed this Guide and populated a Facebook Page to use when promoting your EKM online shop. [/intro]

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Now that you have created and populated a Facebook Page for your EKM online shop using this Guide, your next step is to try and plan the kind of regular, quality content that will both engage your audience and encourage new followers to follow you. 

Adding Statuses

At this point, you need to add your first couple of statuses, so at least your Facebook Page is populated with something when Facebook users click on it. Start with a ‘welcome to our official Facebook Page’ status, and tease Facebook users with a brief summary of the kind of content you’ll be sharing on your Page, such as discount codes and sneak peeks of new products.

It’s a good idea to plan out your first five statuses. Publish your first ‘welcome to our Page’ post, and then schedule the next four to post around an hour apart, to give the illusion that you’ve spent the day working on your Facebook Page.

How to invite people to like your Page

You now need to get followers on your Page. These can be both people - personal profiles - and companies - Facebook Pages. To begin, you need to invite people to get the ball rolling, click in the Invite Friends element on the right-hand side of your Facebook, and invite your friends who you think may be interested in your EKM online shop and your products.

As you now have a Facebook Page, you can use Facebook as either yourself using your own personal Profile, or as your company, using your Facebook Page. You can choose whether you want to be person or Page by clicking next to your name in the top right-hand corner of Facebook.

Get to know other Pages within your Area

Once you’re sure you using Facebook as your Page, you need to run a search for your own town or city. In the search results, click the Pages tab, so you only see Facebook Pages in your locality. You need to like the Pages that are local to you and not in direct competition. The idea is to get your Facebook Page noticed within your local Facebook Community. Like any businesses that you use regularly, such as restaurants, pubs, shops, local community groups and so on. Leave a comment where applicable as your Facebook Page, complimenting their service - don’t obviously fish for likes, just leave genuine comments.

It’s also worth looking up Facebook Pages associated with your industry, or ones that sell products that compliment your own. This should be enough to get the ball rolling in terms of encouraging folk to like and follow your new Facebook Page.

You can of course pay for likes by investing in promotion on Facebook, but if your budget for advertising is low or non-existent, this method will help your begin to build an audience.

What kind of content should I publish?

Ideally, you should post a minimum of once a day, to begin with; over time, you'll notice when the activity on your Page is the most active, so aim to be publishing content within those periods. Make sure your posts are something your followers can engage with - not just salesy ‘buy this now’ text. If you are posting about a specific product, rather than ‘buy it now’ text and vague product description, tell your customers about how this product can make their lives better! How it can be used, worn, etc.

In terms of the types of things you can post about, you should cover things like:

  • A new Product range - you could post details of the entire range all at once, or write about a few new Products per post;
  • Any offers or discounts that are coming soon or running currently;
  • ‘Sneak Peek’ - a hint at some new Products you will be retailing soon;
  • ‘Behind the Scenes’ - if you’re holding an event or you actually make your products, show customers how it’s done;
  • Industry events - if you attend any events such as trade shows, fairs or exhibitions, be sure to take your camera with you and make a note of the other businesses you speak to. You could even link to their Facebook Pages in your status updates which would encourage them to share your post and spread your brand to a wider audience;
  • Personal Posts - if you go on holiday, or have a day off and visit somewhere different, this too can become a blog post. Again, you can link to other websites via your blog post - such as restaurants you ate at or tourist spots you visited. Add a photo in there if you can, and bonus points if you can get a bit of your company branding into the images too!
  • New posts on your blog (if you’ve set one up for your EKM online shop);
  • If you open an account on another social media platform, such as Instagram or Twitter, use your blog to do a countdown until the launch of this new platform to encourage followers on there too;
  • Share a tip or trick that you know will be beneficial to your customers;
  • Share a free resource that your customers would be interested in;
  • Run a contest or giveaway on your Page.

Facebook Page Dos and Donts

DO:

  • Prepare your content in advance to ensure you have a clear theme for what you’re posting about each week;
  • Create images for your Facebook Page status updates - updates with images make a bigger impact! For your Facebook Page, shared images need to be 1200 pixels wide by 627 pixels high - although these will be shrunken down for some viewers, so if you use text make sure it’s not too small;
  • Remember quality over quantity - don’t publish updates without purpose!
  • Use your Facebook Page to promote new products, new services, offers, promotions and discounts as well as your blog post for the week;
  • Spell-check everything before it is posted - bad punctuation and grammar can put off potential customers. The Chrome browser extension Grammarly is very useful for this. 

DON’T:

  • Just share content from elsewhere - if you must share content, keep it to a minimum and add a comment of your own to it to make it more personal and relevant to your followers;
  • Use any forms of cursing or profanity within your content;
  • Get involved with posting or commenting on political or controversial subjects. Your voice on Facebook is there to promote your products and your brand;
  • Just post links to your Products with basic 'buy me' text. This doesn't engage potential customers;
  • Get involved in online arguments. If you have a customer who has an issue, try and deal with them privately in direct messages, or even better, ask for their number to call them and speak to them personally; this will quickly negate any hostility and encourage them to leave positive feedback.

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[contact] If you need our help with your EKM online shop, contact your Account Manager or Customer Support, who will be able to point you in the right direction. We're open from 8am-6pm weekdays and 9am-5.30pm on the weekends. If you'd like to suggest a feature or an upgrade on any of the EKM platforms, please let us know on the EKM Suggestions board. If you have a non-account specific question to ask the EKM Team, join us in EKM Community. [/contact]