Facebook for small businessMost business owners are challenged at the best of times to add another marketing activity to their list of things to do which is why Facebook is such an awesome single social media platform that can do double time as a social media marketing platform as well as several other functions most people probably haven’t thought of.

Below I’ve outlined three ways small business owners can leverage Facebook in their business.

#1 – To Extend Your Marketing Reach 

You notice that I did not say as a selling platform?  People hate to be sold to in social media spaces.  The opportunity for you here is to have conversations with your customers. Ultimately people buy from those they know like and trust. So growing the number of fans you have either by using paid Facebook advertising or simply engaging more on Facebook is an opportunity for you to talk with more people and give them a chance to learn more about you and your business. At some point they will remember you as the friendly, helpful people on Facebook and you will be in with a chance when its time to buy.

That’s not to say you can’t announce your most recent promotion when it comes around.  Just don’t make that the core of your Facebook messaging. Remember this when your boss asks you why you aren’t pounding your Facebook fans with sales messages day in and day out.

#2 – As a Pre Sales Tool 

Facebook is the biggest community of connected people on the planet.  There is a pretty good chance that your prospects are on Facebook. It’s a great way for you to help answer any questions people have about your product or service before they need to buy it. Because it’s a public forum, other Facebook people will see how you dealt with the question and be suitably impressed. In fact there is no reason why you couldn’t simply compile a list of regularly asked questions into an FAQ format and make that a sticky post on your Facebook page.

#3 – As a Customer Support Platform

Facebook excels as a customer support platform.  Lost passwords, status updates and the like.  It is a quick and easy platform for you to provide support to customers in a public forum.  Typically once people have their questions answered or problems resolved they are very happy and will be public and vocal about this.  And Facebook is the ideal venue for that.  Just remember if you have a customer who is somewhat more difficult to satisfy, remember to take the support call offline and ask then to call you directly on the phone so you can solve their issue for them.

There you have it. Facebook is more than just a simple marketing platform.  Its multiple uses provide value to many stretched small businesses as it can be used to perform multiple roles.