Learn How to Use Facebook and LinkedIn to Build Business Relationships
Tips for Publishing Posts, Responding to Questions & Networking With Others
In today's digital age, there are 80 million small and medium-size businesses on Facebook, and it’s reported that one in three internet users go to social media to learn information about businesses, including solutions for their home improvement projects.
Many business leaders are also joining LinkedIn to gain access to business tips and network with others in the construction industry.
That’s why it’s more important than ever for contractors to be active on social media networks like Facebook and LinkedIn. But creating an account is just the first step. Here are our tips for using social media to grow your relationships with current and potential customers, as well as others in your industry.
Complete Your Facebook and LinkedIn Profile
After you’ve established your page, make sure you add the following details to your business profile.
- Profile image: This could be your company logo or an image of your team. Make sure it’s a clear, high-resolution picture, even though the photo looks small on the screen.
- Company description: List the geographic area you serve and the types of services you offer.
- Contact information: Include a phone number, email and fax number.
- Address: Share the full address and any special parking instructions.
- Hours of operation: Include your daily hours and any special seasonal hours.
- Link to your website: Share the link for your main website page.
Important reminder: If you ever change information about your business (e.g., hours of operation, services offered), remember to update your Facebook and LinkedIn pages.
Make a Plan for What You’ll Post to Your Pages
Your Facebook and LinkedIn pages are extensions of your marketing, customer service and networking abilities. Try to post about topics that your customers and fellow contractor and construction industry professionals want to interact with, whether it gets them to like, comment or reach out to you for more information.
Here are some important things to consider when posting to your social media pages:
- Maintain a consistent posting schedule.
- There is a lot of advice out there about how often businesses should post to their Facebook and LinkedIn pages. In general, it’s recommended that businesses do not publish more than one post per day. And it’s OK if there are days when you don’t post at all. The key is to keep things consistent, so start with a goal of three to five posts per week and adjust as necessary.
- Post about a variety of topics, including:
- Photos of completed projects.
- Quotes from satisfied customers.
- Construction trends that might inspire design decisions.
- Sponsorships and community support efforts.
- Schedule posts ahead of time.
- Both Facebook and LinkedIn allow businesses to schedule posts, so try to take advantage of this feature. Not only will it save you time, but it will make it easier for you to keep up with your posting schedule.
- Experiment with the time of day you post.
- Sometimes your followers engage more in the morning and sometimes they’re more active in the evening. Try posting at different times of day to see if you notice a difference between the time of day that people engage with your posts. If you do notice a change, publish the majority of your posts around that time of day.
Important reminder: Check your spelling and grammar before publishing a post. Free online tools, like Grammarly, can help ensure you’re putting your best foot forward.
Interact With Your Followers
In addition to proactively sharing information, you’ll likely receive some questions, comments and potentially complaints from your customers. Create a document that lists possible questions along with your recommended answers. This ensures that your responses are appropriate and consistent.
Here are some important reminders for responding to comments:
- If the comment is positive, “like” or respond to show your appreciation.
- If the comment is negative, respond respectfully and acknowledge their concern. Give them an email or phone number they can use to speak to someone directly. Never engage in banter on your platform. It’s always best to take discussions offline.
- If someone posts profanity or personal information, hide or delete it so others don’t see it.
Invite a Trusted Team Member to Be a Page Administrator
It’s important to regularly check on and post to your company’s Facebook and LinkedIn pages. If you don’t have the time to look at your profiles at least once per day, or think someone else on your team is a better fit to tackle social media, consider inviting them to be an administrator for your company pages.
You can add a page administrator by going into the settings on Facebook and LinkedIn.
Important reminder: Should a social media page administrator leave your company, make sure you remove their access and ability to post on your business’s Facebook and LinkedIn pages.
Establish Social Media Management Guidelines
If you have multiple people in your company managing or contributing to your Facebook or LinkedIn, you’ll want to make sure they’re all on the same page. That’s why we recommend creating one document with social media guidelines that establish the direction and expectations for what can be shared on your company’s social media profiles.
Use the above tips and below questions as an outline for what to include in your social media guidelines.
- Who can post to your page?
- What kind of topics can your company post about? What topics can’t you post about?
- How often will you publish posts?
- What will you say when people share a positive or negative comment?
Want to learn more about managing your online reputation? Read our tips about how to handle online reviews here.
Continue to check back to our blog for more advice on growing your business.