But posting links isn't enough. Just as Google has PageRank, which is a generalized ranking for your page in search results, Facebook has EdgeRank. This algorithm, simplified to Sumuwd (i.e. the sum of user affinity with your page, inherent "weight" of the type of post, and a decay based on time), puts the focus on user engagement with your posts. With more engagement, your posts will last longer and show in more people's Fecebook News Feeds.
Commenting back on client or customer posts on your timeline, posting sharable content that is reactive to what's happening on your page, and providing a mouthpiece for your least vocal audience allows you to be seen by the most people possible. Encourage your current clients to “Like” your page, and then ENGAGE THEM! Nothing is worse than writing to a brick wall, so give back to the community that drives your page and the algorithm will thank you for your clients.
Step 4: Get some attention
To garner this engagement, you have to go where your customers are. The first step is to add existing pages to your page's favorites, such as Mint.com, QuickBooks or other brands your clients may be familiar with), and are a great place to not only find information to share, but also interact with potential customers by commenting on posts as your Page or as yourself, directing traffic to your Page. But it doesn't stop there: finding Q&A sites, forums, and review sites can give you a wealth of opportunity for creating a true connection with potential clients and their friends. Be sure to include links to your Facebook page and invite your users to continue the conversation there.
Another way to invite attention to your page is to link your personal profile to your business. Creating a personal brand, which will inevitably drive interested parties to your Facebook page, will dovetail with connecting with potential clients. Setting your profile employer to your company will drive traffic to your page, as well as show your friends visiting the page that they have a contact that works there.
Finally, running Facebook Ads, especially in conjunction with other outreach, could bring attention to your practice. Looking to expand your team? Try advertising to them on a platform that most users spend over 20 minutes a day on. In this economy, there are plenty of experienced professionals within your Facebook reach who are looking for a job. Broadening the reach of your firm is easy when you ensure that the people seeing your ads and posts are highly engaged with the niche your company serves.
Step 5: Convert that attention into leads (and clients)
Finally, you have eyes on your page and fingers on keyboards - put them to good use! By using “custom tabs” (www.searchinfluence.com/2011/07/lunch-learn-facebook-tabs-iframes), which haven't changed much from previous Facebook page layouts except by giving you more space to work with, lets you take those fingers and direct them to a lead-generation form or another way to actively build your business. While engagement on posts is key to a successful Facebook marketing strategy for Accountants or any other business, the goal is to turn those engagers into paying clients. Using custom tabs, the savvy business owner can drive qualified clients to his or her door, expanding the value of Facebook beyond Influence and towards a viable marketing platform.
Following these five steps, a tax and accounting professional can socially build upon their business, giving clients a new outlet, expand reach both for client acquisition and industry thought leadership, and creating a social home for the practice.
Will Scott is Founder and President of Search Influence (www.SearchInfluence.com), and has been helping small businesses get online since 1994, before most people even knew there was an Internet. Since then, he has been focused on making information more accessible online. In the classroom teaching technology to professionals or in the boardroom presenting the value of online business to fortune 1000 companies, Will is passionate about the impact of the Internet on business. As technical and production lead for WebBoss.com, Will oversaw the production of 10′s of thousands of small business web sites. With WebBoss, Will worked collaboratively with small business owners helping them realize their vision online.