How to promote your Facebook page with targeted advertising, engagement follow-ups, and helpful directions

By Melissa Gilliam Shaw

Remember the notes kids used to pass around asking if someone liked them? There were 2 checkboxes: “Yes” and “No.” Maybe that worked in grade school, but modern relationships are a little more complicated.

Facebook turns 17 this month. As the platform matures, the way utilities promote content must change, too. We can’t rely on graphics asking folks to like us and then expect them to find us without directions.

Here are 4 ways Pioneer Social helps utilities promote pages to build relationships on Facebook.

Aim Messages (We Play Cupid!)

Tinder aside, it’s a challenge to connect with the right people online. 7 out of 10 adults use Facebook, so it’s a powerful platform for consumer-member engagement. But with 1.82 billion active users each day, it helps to have Cupid’s aim to make sure your message reaches the right people.

With the right information, our ads team can target Facebook advertising to reach your members with a relatively high degree of accuracy.

Budget to promote important content each month. But be careful — tempting though it may be, do not use the big blue “Boost” button on your Facebook Page. The boost button shares your content with more people, but they may not be your consumers.

Instead, Pioneer team members channel their inner Cupid by using Facebook Business to:

  • Define your core audience by ZIP codes, demographics, and interests for more effective and targeted advertising.
  • Engage with people based on how they’ve interacted with your utility.
  • Create new messages targeted to people similar to your best fans.

Remember to Respond

If someone walked up to you and asked a question, would you walk away without a word? I hope not. Social media is a conversation. Every time someone comments, shares or reacts to your content, you have the chance to follow up with them and build a stronger relationship.

For example, during a high volume event like an outage, your content could be shared with consumers who may not follow your page. You don’t have to like a page to be able to comment or react to social content, but doing so creates a relationship opportunity for a utility.

Once someone engages with your content (paid or organic), we do two things, based on your level of Pioneer Social support:

  • Platinum-Level Pioneer Social Subscribers: Our team of “fence checkers” like positive consumer comments, questions, and shares on all your social channels. We also invite commenters to like your page if they haven’t done so already, helping you grow your Facebook following.
  • TwoFourSeven Response Program Members: In addition to liking consumer actions on your channel, our TwoFourSeven Response Team responds to consumer comments, alerts you to possible issues, and monitors your page around the clock.

Even if you aren’t working with us, these tactics still apply. Remember to respond!

Show Them Love

We know you appreciate your consumer-members, but how often do you show them your affection? Promotions, giveaways, and other incentives can help make your members’ social media experience with you a reciprocal one.

For example, a utility could have a QR code at a community event or annual meeting check-in table. When the consumer checks in, if they scan the QR code and like the utility Facebook page, they could be entered in a raffle for a bill credit or other incentive. Check state laws to make sure you follow gaming rules; if there are limits to what you can offer, consider a fun promotional item instead.

Just as a box of chocolates or roses can win attention early in a relationship, incentives are an easy way to build your base and show you care.  

Be Available

New to the social dating scene? Every relationship starts by putting yourself out there. Your social channels can help you build great consumer relationships, but only if people can find you.

Do consumer-members know you’re available? Go to your utility Facebook Page, then look at the URL in the browser. If there are any numbers following the name of your utility, you’re playing hard to find.

First step? Customize your URL. Pick a URL that’s the same across all of your social channels if you can. For example, you can find the identical Pioneer Utility Resources handle, @UtilityPioneers, on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, LinkedIn, and Vimeo. Having trouble customizing your URL? Drop me a line and we’ll walk you through it.

In your newsletters, local magazine pages, and other utility collateral, please don’t say, “Like us on Facebook” or even (worse), “Find us on Facebook.” Make sure you tell consumers HOW to find you. Instead say, “Like us on Facebook at” Better yet, say why they should connect with you. What value are you offering?

Finding (Facebook) Love

Navigating Facebook relationships can be daunting. Let Pioneer Social help. We specialize in targeted social media campaigns and 24/7/365 consumer-member digital monitoring and response programs.

Pioneer Social