A step-by-step guide to creating a Facebook Local event for your Vancouver business

Facebook Local is an exciting new way to mix up your social media presence in Vancouver.

Never heard of it? Don’t worry – you’re not alone!

Facebook Local is still flying a bit under the radar as it’s been working out the kinks in its system. For small businesses, it has significant opportunities to connect you with your target customers, and early adopters will have an edge over the competition.

Here’s how to use it!

The 411 on Facebook Local and why it matters for social media in Vancouver

So the first step in getting on the Facebook Local bandwagon is to know what it is! Basically, Facebook Local is like Yelp, FourSquare, and Facebook Events all wrapped up in one neat little app package. You can see where your friends have checked in, learn about close-by events, and review – or read reviews of – businesses like yours.

While Facebook Local is separate from Facebook, the two apps sync up. Because of this, things like your event invitations can be seen in both apps.

How to use Facebook Local as part of your social media in Vancouver

1. Make sure all your Facebook pages are merged

The first time someone checks in at your business, a page is created that is separate from your official business page. If you search for your business name and find one of these unofficial pages, click on it. Once you are in it, you will find a button at the top asking if this is your business. Click that button and follow the instructions that follow to merge this unofficial page. Merging the pages will help eliminate confusion when people try to find your business.

2. Create an event

On your official business page, you will be able to make an event, just like you always have. Once you choose to create an event, you’ll be led to a page where you fill in all the details about the time, place, description, etc. All of this is just like normal on Facebook. Once you have all the details written up, then it’s time to take your event live!  

3. Promote, promote, promote

Now you’ve got your event – and the perfect way to raise your business profile! How do you do that?

Well, where your business and event sit in the Facebook Local search rankings is based on how many likes you get. Yup, it’s one giant popularity contest. And like every popularity contest, the way to win is clear… so it’s time to promote your event!

You can create flyers to hand out in your business, email blast your clients, buy a Facebook ad, etc. Luckily, as you move up in the rankings, you’ll be connecting with more people, making it easier to get likes.

But to get yourself to that point, you’ve got to promote your ass off!

4. Keep the engagement going

You’ve got engagement with your event, but you want to bring it over to your business.

The best way to do this is to encourage check-ins and reviews. Ask clients to review and check-in at your business. You can also spark reviews by sending out an email request and by adding a review request at the bottom of your receipts.

Still not getting enough interaction? Host a contest based on check-ins or reviews! Don’t forget that your contest can be cross-platform, tying together your Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter followers.

 

Looking to diversify the reach of your social media in Vancouver? Take a look at which platforms your should be on! Feeling like you’re spending more of your day managing your social media? Let us handle it for you – letting you get back to the work you love!

 

How to: Small business Twitter lead generation

Ah, Twitter. The noisy social media platform where Trump makes vague threats and brands shout their 140 character messages to a sea of followers who aren’t listening. But hey, despite a lot of recent changes to the platform and increasingly lower engagement rates, Twitter still has an important place in your social media toolkit. Especially for generating leads for your small business.

Let’s look at some ideas and tips to help you make the most of Twitter to find and generate leads without getting into the advertising game. We’ll save the topic of advertising for another post and get right into some free (‘cause who doesn’t like FREE?) tools and techniques to help you start your Twitter lead generation campaign.

Start at the top – your Twitter header

You can make the most of your Twitter header by using a call to action in your image. Make sure you clearly communicate what your business is and give people an easy way to contact you. For example, let’s say you are a plumbing company in Vancouver – your Twitter header can feature your logo and phone number in the image along with text to support it like, “Let us know you found us on Twitter for 10% off!” Simple and effective.

Pin a tweet

Build your perfect tweet – something that offers your services, perhaps an important image or link to your website and pin this tweet to the top of your profile. You can pin any tweet – so select one that can help you sell. It’s the first message that followers will see on your profile, so make it count!

Search hashtags

Depending on what kinds of leads you’re looking for, start searching on industry terms or topics that are being used by the people you are looking to find. If you’re a Vancouver clothing retailer, search topics like #Vancouver #Fashion. Perhaps you’re a Thai restaurant in downtown Vancouver, searching for #Vancouver #foodie will help you find people who might be interested in you. You’ll need to try a few different hashtags and terms to zero in on the market you are looking for.

Build Twitter lists

When you find people in your market, follow them, of course, and add them to a Twitter list. These can be public or private. Adding users to a public list can get their attention, like a soft tap on the shoulder. Beyond the relationship building, lists can help you keep track of important users out there… as you’ll see in our next tip.

Build a relationship with the people on your lists by retweeting and liking their tweets. Your actions in becoming a fan of their will go along way in gaining their interest in you. Make sure you are following and sharing content from as many different users as you can. Spend some time on them!

Use free Twitter lead generation tools

Using a publishing platform like Hootsuite can make your life easier for a few different reasons when looking to help generate leads from Twitter. How?

Save your searches into visual streams

This allows you to scan each stream at a glance without having to return to the search results every time you execute a search. Being able to organize your Twitter data like this allows you to quickly interact with and act on lead generating content that is applicable to your business.

Schedule your tweets

Batch your work to save time, and pre-plan your tweets. Doing this helps create a more consistent marketing message for your brand, plus saves you hours of searching for stuff to tweet about (especially when the Trump BS that dominates Twitter isn’t going to help you get leads).

Now, not only do you have the convenience of being able to schedule tweets and other social content, but you can review a much larger and relevant picture of what your Twitter audience is up to at any given moment.

Set up automated Twitter lead generation platforms

Twitter has recently updated its policies to block third-party platforms from sending automated direct messages, welcome tweets and other automated content.

The use of automated DMs was always controversial (can you say “SPAM”?). However, automated DMs were a handy way to send out offers and links.

All of that doesn’t really matter now – so if you were thinking of using automated tools or had set these up in the past, they certainly won’t be working any longer.

Play the long game

Once you’ve begun to build up your community, you can then start inviting them directly to your business. You’ve earned the right to approach them on occasion, but keep in mind – no one, not even you yourself – likes the hard sell. Ask them directly, send them links… but then go right back to supporting and reinforcing your audience.

There are really two ways to look at Twitter to generate leads:

  1. you’re either going to spend money (on ads)
  2. or you’re going to spend time to generate leads

No shortcuts, my friends. If you opt for time, we know these tips will help get you out of the gate faster, help you to be more efficient and at the same time, build a solid community around your brand.

Have questions or need help with your Twitter marketing or using Twitter to generate leads for your business? We do that! Get in touch with us awesome people at Legendary Social Media Vancouver to start your Twitter lead generation campaign.