Facebook’s Push to Make Money Off WhatsApp: A Mobile Payment


©iStock/gutaper

Facebook has been seeking ways to make money from the messaging service WhatsApp and has been testing payments via the app since last year in India, WhatsApp’s largest market with more than 200 million users.

Where will the rollout start?  Facebook intends to drive a global expansion of mobile payments on WhatsApp from London, accelerating its efforts to make money off the popular messaging service.  They are dispatching engineers from Britain to support its initiative.

Read more about how Facebook is plotting a global expansion of mobile payments on WhatsApp.

Great Earnings Numbers Push Facebook Stock Higher, While Lousy Earnings Drive Down Tesla

The Entrepreneur Index™ was down on the day.

4 min read

Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own.

Great earnings pushed Facebook shares up nearly six percent while lousy earnings drove down Tesla‘s stock more than four percent.

With the reporting season now in the middle innings, it’s clear that the earnings recession feared by investors — when profits actually decline — will not come to pass this quarter. Profit growth has slowed significantly for companies across the economy but on average, it hasn’t gone negative.

Facebook, as it did last quarter, blew away analyst estimates for earnings and revenues. Despite all the angst about user and regulator backlash over privacy issues, the social media giant continues to deliver stellar financial results. First quarter revenues were up 26 percent and monthly users were up eight percent for the quarter. The stock, up more than ten percent in pre-market trading, closed the day with a gain of 5.85 percent.

Facebook’s good numbers and equally strong results from Microsoft helped the tech-heavy Nasdaq Composite index post a gain of 0.21 percent. The S&P 500 and Dow indexes, however, had losses of 0.04 percent and 0.51 percent respectively.

The Entrepreneur Index™ also declined 0.49 percent on the day as other companies on the index, including Tesla, O’Reilly Auto Parts and D.R. Horton reported disappointing financial results.

Tesla’s first quarter was shockingly bad. It lost $702 million, more than twice analyst expectations, after reporting a profit in the last two quarters. The stock was down 4.4 percent today. The vehicle maker ended the quarter with just $2.2 billion in cash and will likely have to raise more capital from currently skeptical investors. Yields on the company’s debt have surged and Tesla shares are down 25.6 percent this year.

Homebuilder D.R. Horton and retailer O’Reilly Auto Parts were also hammered after reporting financial results. D.R. Horton beat earnings and revenue expectations for the quarter but issued guidance for the year significantly below expectations. The stock was down 4.76 percent today. O’Reilly, meanwhile, blamed bad weather for a revenue miss in the quarter and also issued soft guidance for the year, sending its shares down 4.21 percent.

Chipotle Mexican Grill, on the other hand, continued to roll, handily beating earnings and revenue estimates. The stock, however, fell 4.46 percent after the company revealed it was served a new subpoena last week relating to an outbreak of illness in Ohio last year that left hundreds of customers sick. An e coli outbreak in 2015 sent sales and the company’s stock price plummeting. Chipotle has been on a tear recently. The shares are up 57 percent this year and 99.7 percent over the last twelve months.

Fedex Corp. also had a major decline after competitor UPS reported poor results. UPS also blamed bad weather for the weak results, but the shares were down more than eight percent. Fedex fell 4.54 percent on the day. It will next report earnings in June.

While Facebook shares were strong, other technology stocks struggled. Chip-makers NVIDIA Corp. (-4.8 percent) and Analog Devices (-1.94 percent), were both down sharply. Netflix (-1.58 percent) and Twitter (-2.01 percent) were also down.

The healthcare sector continued to recover from a sharp fall last week. Medical device-maker Boston Scientific was down yesterday after missing earnings and revenue estimates but was up 4.2 percent today. Drug-makers Regeneron Pharmaceuticals (2.8 percent) and Alexion Pharmaceuticals (4.3 percent) were also up nicely.

Other notable gains included Comcast (2.58 percent) and salesforce.com (2.21 percent). Ford Motor Co. was down on the day but rose sharply after the closing bell when it reported earnings.

The Entrepreneur Index™ collects the top 60 publicly traded companies founded and run by entrepreneurs. The entrepreneurial spirit is a valuable asset for any business, and this index recognizes its importance, no matter how much a company has grown. These inspirational businesses can be tracked in real time on Entrepreneur.com.

Stock Market Retreats Off Record Highs as Facebook Prepares to Report Financial Results

3 min read

Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own.

The stock market retreated off all-time highs set yesterday with the major stock indexes posting small declines today.

The S&P 500 and Dow indexes were both down 0.22 percent while the Nasdaq Composite index fell 0.23 percent. The Entrepreneur Index™ had a loss of 0.19 percent on the day.

The technology sector was generally weak with the exception of semiconductor chipmakers Analog Devices and NVIDIA Corp. Both were up after strong earnings from Texas Instruments today lifted the entire chip sector. Analog Devices, up 2.79 percent, set a 52-week high today. Chipmakers have had a strong recovery from the plunge at the end of last year. Analog’s stock is up 36.7 percent this year while NVIDIA is up 43.2 percent.

Most other tech stocks on the index were down. Netflix (-2.01 percent) and Amazon (-1.14 percent) had the biggest declines.

Gap Inc. and L Brands both had strong days in the market, rising 3.31 percent and 3.24 percent respectively. L Brands, which recently struck a deal with activist investor Barington Capital to support the company’s independent board of director nominees, has risen sharply in the last two sessions, putting its return for the year-to-date (1.79 percent) in positive territory. Gap, up just 0.47 percent so far this year, plans to split off its Old Navy brand from the rest of the company.

Other good gains on the Entrepreneur Index™ included Under Armour Inc. (2.01 percent) and Universal Health Services (1.74 percent).

Rollins Inc. shares got pummeled after the company reported financial results that missed estimates for the second consecutive quarter. The stock was down 10.06 percent — the biggest loss on the Entrepreneur Index™ today. The pest control company missed earnings estimates by a penny and posted quarterly revenues more than one percent below expectations. The stock is still up 8.8 percent this year.

Oil and gas producer Hess Corp. fell 2.39 percent after inventories of U.S. crude oil increased by more than expected last week. Hess is the hottest stock on the Entrepreneur Index™ this year, rising 62.6 percent as the price of oil has rebounded.

Drug-makers Alexion Pharmaceuticals (-1.72 percent) and Regeneron Pharmaceuticals (-1.07 percent) were both down today after strong gains yesterday.

Tesla was also down sharply, falling 1.99 percent ahead of the company reporting financial results after the market close today. A CFRA analyst suggested that first quarter numbers “could be a disaster” for the company. Tesla reported profits in the last two quarters.

Four other companies on the Entrepreneur Index™ will report financial results after the market close today:

The Entrepreneur Index™ collects the top 60 publicly traded companies founded and run by entrepreneurs. The entrepreneurial spirit is a valuable asset for any business, and this index recognizes its importance, no matter how much a company has grown. These inspirational businesses can be tracked in real time on Entrepreneur.com.

5 tips to make your restaurant’s Facebook page appetizing

Hungry for more

When Facebook users scroll through their newsfeed, sometimes all it takes to get them to visit your restaurant is seeing a photo of your world-famous pasta dishes, sushi or happy hour specials. Nearly 75 percent of Facebook users make decisions on which restaurants to visit based on the photos and comments they see in their newsfeed. Establishing your restaurant’s Facebook page will not only give you the opportunity to bring in new customers, but will also help you strengthen your relationships with current customers.

5 strategies for your restaurant Facebook page

Not sure what to post? Try these 5 ideas to fill your restaurant with new customers and keep them coming back:

  1. Share photos of your product.
  2. Share and request customer testimonials.
  3. Leverage user-generated content.
  4. Ask questions.
  5. Show appreciation for your team.

Let’s get started making your restaurant’s Facebook page as effective as possible.

1. Share photos of your product

Facebook is a great platform for showing off all of the incredible dishes that you serve at your restaurant.

Post photos of your daily specials and customer favorites. Mix it up by showing off your dessert offerings and exciting appetizers. Add in your great cocktails and wine list.

Your customers will love seeing what’s in store for them if they book a reservation with you.

Need some help taking tasty photos? Check out our post on wowing your followers with great food photos.

2. Share and request customer testimonials

When new customers find your Facebook page, they’re eager to learn as much as they can about your business  —  especially from your current customers. Sharing reviews from customers can show off why your loyal fans love coming to dine at your restaurant.

Restaurant Facebook Page Sawmill Tap RoomPhoto: Sawmill Tap Room on Facebook

Cross-promoting your pages by sharing a fun graphic with the text of a positive review is a great way to let your customers know about all the places they can find you to share their experience at your business.

3. Leverage user-generated content

Many of your followers are loyal fans who love your restaurant, love your cuisine, and are already posting about you on their personal social media pages. Their content creates a great opportunity for you to share their endorsement on your page and encourage new customers to check you out.

You can share their photos and posts to your restaurant’s Facebook page  —  just make sure you tag that user and thank them for their post:

Restaurant Facebook Page HandleBar AustinPhoto: HandleBar Austin on Facebook

The majority of consumers trust other diners’ opinions more than advertisements, so sharing content from your existing fans helps to build brand awareness and trust with new customers.

Related: What is user-generated content and can it help your business?

4. Ask questions

Your restaurant’s Facebook page is a great place to strike up a conversation with your customers.

Whether you post a question as a text post or as an image, your customers love the opportunity to share their thoughts and feedback.

You can ask questions like, “What dish would you like to see on our menu?” “What’s your all-time favorite dish to order at our restaurant?” “We’re sharing one of our secret recipes for all you home cooks. Which one do you want us to share?”

Asking questions is a great way to get your customers talking and engaging with you online.

5. Show appreciation for your team

Behind the scenes of your restaurant, there’s an incredible team working hard and making it everything it is. Share photos of those friendly faces on your Facebook page!

Restaurant Facebook Page Juan in a MillionPhoto: Juan in a Million on Facebook

One of the best things about being a local business is that your team and community have the opportunity to get to know each other.

Posting about your team not only lets your customers get to know the wonderful people at your business — and recognize the faces they love to see when they come visit — it also shows how deeply you care about your employees.

You can post about celebrating your employees’ anniversaries with your business, giving them shout-outs for a job well done or a special skill on the grill or behind the bar, or wishing them a happy birthday. Your team will appreciate it, and your customers will appreciate how well you treat your team.

Whatever you choose to post, be sure to stay active. Try to post multiple times each week, and make sure you’re responding to your loyal followers. They’ll love to hear from you.

Want to learn more about using Facebook for your business?

GoDaddy Social can help you elevate your Facebook marketing strategy to engage with your customers like never before — get started here.

Facebook Ads for lawyers: 4 ways to get more legal clients

Objections overruled

Like most service providers, attorneys are always looking for ways to get more clients. Facebook Ads for lawyers might be an attractive lead-generation option. Why?

Legal keywords currently make up the five most expensive keywords on Bing and Google. If you want to rank for “lawyer” or “attorney,” be prepared to spend more than $100 every time someone clicks your ad. Some firms are spending $50,000 to $100,000 a month on Google Ads.

And remember, that comes with no guarantee of getting a new client in the process.

It’s no wonder many law firms are looking for ways to cut their advertising costs. What if your firm could spend a fraction of the ad spend mentioned above and get the same amount of leads?

Of course, there are ways to help ensure your law firm PPC is ROI-positive and profitable. But if you’re looking for new channels to test to market your lawyers, Facebook Ads are worth exploring.

Related: Google AdWords vs. Facebook Ads — Which is right for your business?

4 ways to use Facebook Ads for lawyers

Here are four ways you can optimize your ad spend on Facebook and land new clients along the way:

  1. Retarget your website visitors using the Facebook Pixel.
  2. Target people who are exactly like your current clients.
  3. Market your content, not your services.
  4. Use current events to your advantage.

Try these four strategies to market your law practice using Facebook Ads.

Related: How to rock Facebook advertising — even on a tight budget

1. Retarget your website visitors using the Facebook Pixel

Website visitors are the perfect start for your Facebook targeting campaigns. You already know they’re interested in hiring a legal firm because they’ve visited your website.

They might just need a final push before taking the plunge to hire you.

But the only way you can retarget these visitors on your Facebook campaigns is if you have the Facebook Pixel installed on your website.

With it, you’ll be able to optimize ads for people who’ve visited your website and make them highly targeted. But if you haven’t installed it, your firm will be essentially playing a guessing game.

Facebook Ads For Lawyers Pixels In Ads Manager

You can find your Facebook Pixel in your Ads Manager menu (above). Building the pixel takes two clicks (Facebook Ads Manager does it for you) and then you can add it to the code of whatever site you want to track.

Now, every time someone visits a page (for example, your services page) they’ll be automatically added to an audience list.

This will give you the ability to retarget them with an optimized ad campaign in the future.

For example, you can gear the pixel to track people who’ve visited your legal services page but didn’t actually contact you to become a client. Or, you can set your pixel to track website visitors who failed to click on a call-to-action like an eBook download.

Whatever actions you want to track, make sure the code is set up and working before you start using it on your targeting campaigns.

Related: How to target website visitors with Facebook Ad

2. Target people who are exactly like your current clients

Who are your current clients, right at this very moment?

No matter what legal space you are in, there’s a good chance that a lot of your clients have a similar demographic, age range and maybe even a similar profession.

What if there were a way for you to target a group of people who are exactly the same, but are yet to become clients?

There is.

Facebook has a tool called Lookalike Audiences, and it targets those who have lookalike attributes to your current audience.

Facebook Ads For Lawyers Lookalike Audience

The tool, which can also create a lookalike audience from your email list, means you can market your firm to thousands of people who are very similar to those who have already expressed an interest in your services.

It’s a great way to target your ideal customer personas, especially as Facebook does all the hard work for you.

Another great feature of lookalike audiences is you can bundle them into an audience you are also retargeting. This means your firm is able to put its advertising spend into people who are the most likely to show an interest in becoming clients.

Related: What information should you include in your buyer persona customer profile?

3. Market your content, not your services

People go on Facebook to share photos of puppies and talk to their friends. Nobody wants to be hassled by billboards about local lawyers.

The best approach for your firm to use Facebook is to look at it as a way to join in on potential clients’ conversations, rather than trying to target them like you do using Google Ads.

To do this, produce content that engages your audience and sparks a conversation, then promote it through Facebook Ads for your lawyers.

That’s right, this means creating a blog for your law firm.

Editor’s note: Need a blog? With our Quick Start Wizard, GoDaddy’s Managed WordPress makes it a snap to get a blog up and running.

Facebook Ads Lawyers GoDaddy Managed WordPress Legal ThemeManaged WordPress features responsive themes designed especially for lawyers, easy page building tools for fluid design and more.

Aim to provide value with your pieces of content, too.

Give the reader something that they can take away with them, even if you haven’t got them on board as a client yet.

That way, when they’re ready to hire a divorce lawyer, you’ll be at the top of their minds.

Creating conversational content that can actually help people with their problems is a great strategy for legal firms in the long run. This builds trust, awareness and a sense of personal connection to your firm — all things that are extremely hard to do with traditional billboard advertising.

Facebook advertising vs. other PPC ads

Don’t look at Facebook advertising in the same way as your PPC advertising. The two approaches work in completely different ways.

PPC advertising targets those who are already seeking your services, while your goal for advertising on Facebook is to make people aware you are there if they need you.

Related: How to create a social media content calendar, then post engaging content

4. Use current events to your advantage

This sounds a bit paparazzi-like, but it works. Creating content is great, but we all know people love using Facebook to keep up to date with the world around them.

That’s why creating content that syncs up with current events cannot only get it noticed, but will make it shareable as well.

Some of the best pieces of content you can create will relate to something that’s happening right now.

For example, a major Hollywood couple recently announced they were getting a divorce. And your firm specializes in divorce law. A piece of content outlining why every couple should have a prenup is bound to gain a lot more attention because of the recent news out of Hollywood.

It’s all about being part of the conversation.

Real-world example

Take this example from Futeral & Nelson, LLC, a Charleston, South Carolina, law firm that specializes in family law, criminal defense and injury claims.

The firm was representing a client who had lost a family member due to an incident at an assisted-living residence. The family member had wandered off and tragically died. While they were representing the family, the exact same incident happened again.

Futeral & Nelson quickly wrote a Facebook post that shared a news article about the tragic incident, which also highlighted that it was the second time a tragedy had struck in such circumstances.

While the post gained a lot of attention, the firm had also set up a call-to-action that was linked to in an article on the local news website. When clicked through, it took the user to a specially designed landing page, which was geared toward the news story:

Facebook Ads For Lawyers Futeral And Nelson ExamplePhoto: Justice Legal Marketing

Although the firm’s leads were actually generated from Facebook, it’s a great example of how lawyers can use social media to create awareness in their practice without imposing on sensitive situations.

Join the conversation and subtly attract new clients

An important thing to remember if your lawyers are using Facebook Ads as a tool to get new clients: Don’t bombard people with legal jargon.

Facebook is a social platform, so it works best if your ads are doing just that — being social.

You can certainly get more legal clients by using Facebook. But it means you might have to think outside the box and create specific pieces of content to get them to join in on a conversation started by your firm.

And when they’re in need of legal advice, without even pressuring them, you’ll be at the top of their list.

Facebook Metrics

I love numbers. Actually, I like them so well I was going to be an accountant until one of my professors explained that good marketing is all about the numbers.

Today, as we build marketing strategies for clients, there is a focus on the numbers. All the activity for our clients is great, writing blog posts and social media updates, but the real measure of success is the numbers. So I get really excited when I see numbers especially Facebook metrics that tell me what we are doing is working for our clients.  

Unfortunately, many of our clients don’t live and breath marketing numbers so they may not share my enthusiasm when they receive their monthly results. 

That was definitely the case recently. We sent a client the before and after comparison of their Facebook metrics that you see below. These are incredible results and we were ecstatic, but the client wasn’t impressed. Why? Because they didn’t understand what the numbers meant. 

So I wrote an explanation of each Facebook metric. Then they were impressed. So if the numbers don’t tell you the whole story, read the rest of my notes below the data.  

Impressions                             Aug: 22,300             March: 173,200

Impressions are the number of times a post from your page is displayed. If, for example, someone sees a page update in their Facebook news feed and then sees that same update when a friend shares it, that would count as 2 impressions.

Why do impressions matter? Most people need to be exposed to a message, product, or brand multiple times before it becomes memorable. Whether you are launching a new company or simply running a sale on your most popular product, multiple impressions help you break through the clutter and get noticed. 

In this case, our campaign made 8 times as many impressions as the client typically had before we started working with them. 

Reach                                       Aug: 11,400             March: 97,600

This is the number of unique people who received impressions of a post. As Facebook has made it more and more difficult to reach an audience, this growth is extraordinary. We did spend about $100/month to expand our reach, but as you will see from the engagement numbers below most of the reach came as people liked and shared the content we were presenting.

Page and Post Engagement            Aug: 980                 March: 15,400

This engagement metric looks at the total number of interactions with your content. It is obvious that fans are responding multiple times within a month, liking and sharing several pieces of content.

Engaged User                              Aug: 645                 March: 8,706

This metric provides an understanding of how well content is performing. It is the number of unique people who responded to something that you have posted. Engagement includes any click, reaction (like, love, laugh) comment or share.

Why is it important? The more people who engage with content, the more value Facebook will put on the information you are sharing, and the more likely it will be that your next post will be presented to a wider audience. 

Reactions                                              Aug: 223                 March: 4,065

Reactions are Facebook’s way of facilitating that emotional conversation online. Facebook Reactions are a series of 6 emojis customers can use to respond to a post. The options include: Love, Ha-ha, Like, Wow, Sad, and Angry. This metric is a subset of the engagement metric, describing a very specific type of interaction.

Like engagement overall, Facebook reads reactions as a signal that you are providing information people will like to see. Also, studying your reaction data will help you figure out which types of content to share more of. 

Link Clicks                                             Aug: 31                  March: 695

This is probably the strongest of all the metrics. It defines the number of times a link in a post is clicked. Why is this the strongest metric? Because the viewer is engaging with the content to take the next step. They are agreeing to be transported to a specified destination or experience, on or off Facebook-owned properties. For example, if someone clicks on a buy now button they will be taken to a website or app store, we report this click as a link click. 

New Fans                                              Aug: 31                  March: 183

This is the number of new people who have joined your community. This is usually the metric everyone focus on. How many fans do you have? While it is nice to have a bigger community, if people aren’t engaging with your content it won’t really matter. 

The trick is to get your house in order. Create great content, then invite lots of people to see it. As new people are exposed, through shares by their friends, remember to invite them to join your page as well. 

Posts                                                    Aug: 13                  March: 51

This is the number of status updates made during the month. It is a measure of how consistently the page is being updated. For this client, an arts organization, it makes sense to be posting up to twice a day, sharing event announcements and photos from events.  

For most businesses, a good rule of thumb is several times a week.  

So now you have it, a good overview of what your Facebook metrics mean. Looking for a more in-depth analysis of your Facebook marketing? Give us a call! 

Join Zoho CEO Sridhar Vembu for a Facebook Live AMA from Zoholics This Thursday

You have a chance next week to ask the CEO of Zoho, one of the leading business software companies in the U.S., anything you want.

Small Business Trends is hosting a Facebook Live AMA on Thursday, April 11, at 10 a.m. ET. Our special guest will be Zoho CEO Sridhar Vembu.

We’ll be live at Zoholics, the company’s annual developer’s conference in Austin. Small Business Trends CEO Anita Campbell and Brent Leary are co-hosting this live event.

You can watch and join the chat with us Thursday by heading to the Small Business Trends Facebook page. You can get a jump start on the conversation. Go to the Small Business Trends Facebook Event posting an get your question in early. Use the hastags #Zoholics19 and #ZohoCEO.

Check out these other great upcoming small business events and contests …



Visa, SBA Holding Disaster Prep Innovation Contest

Disasters can happen anytime, and how you plan your recovery beforehand will greatly determine the success of your business moving forward.

Visa and the U.S. Small Business Administration are holding the Inclusive Innovation Incubator to help small business make such preparations. The goal of the event is to encourage experts across a wide range of fields to find solutions for disaster recovery.

They are offering cash prizes for the best solutions. The First Prize will take $25,000, Second Prize $15,000, and Third Prize $10,000.

The Inclusive Innovation Incubator is going to be held from May 3-5 in Washington D.C.

Click the red button to register and get more information about the event.

Register Now



Featured Events, Contests and Awards

Elevate Your Digital InfluenceElevate Your Digital Influence
April 13, 2019, Issaquah, Washington

Are you ready to grow your business? Join us and learn how to put together a PR plan and leverage what you are doing on social to grow your level of influence. Are you ready to be a leader in your marketplace? #ElevateYourDigitalInfluence


Listening to the Voice of the Customer WorkshopListening to the Voice of the Customer Workshop
April 23, 2019, Boston, Massachusetts

Join Applied Marketing Science (AMS) for the next open-enrollment session of “Listening to the Voice of the Customer,” our acclaimed training workshop, on April 23-24, 2019 at the Sheraton Boston Hotel located in the heart of downtown Boston. Led by veteran product development and market research experts, Gerry Katz (AMS Vice Chairman), and John Burns (AMS Principal), this course will introduce Voice of the Customer market research and teach you to use it to accelerate innovation in business-to-business markets.
Discount Code
SMALLBIZ ($100 Discount)


Beachpreneurs Beach Camp 5Beachpreneurs Beach Camp 5
April 26, 2019, Daytona Beach, Florida

For starters, we’re for Women Entrepreneurs only. During Beach Camp, you’ll have plenty of opportunity to learn, apply and mastermind with warm successful women.
You’ll also have time to sleep in and you’ll get long breaks to relax and walk the beach or go for a swim. We didn’t create a conference at the beach just to lock you away in a conference room from dawn til dusk. Beach Camp is a lifestyle focused event so you’ll be spending as much time enjoying your life as you will be focusing on your business. Join us today!


#SmallBusinessWeek Hackathon Event#SmallBusinessWeek Hackathon Event
May 3, 2019, Washington, DC

Visa and the U.S. Small Business Administration invite you to bring your ideas and your laptop to the Inclusive Innovation Incubator, 2301 Georgia Ave NW, Washington, DC 20001 from May 3rd to May 5th, 2019. Spend a weekend creating solutions to help small businesses recover or prepare for sudden impacts of natural disasters.
Team up with entrepreneurs, designers, and developers to build apps and solutions that will help small businesses prepare and/or recover from major natural disasters such as hurricanes, flooding, wildfires, tornados, snowstorms or earthquakes.


National #SmallBusinessWeek Awards Ceremonies: Facebook Live EventNational #SmallBusinessWeek Awards Ceremonies: Facebook Live Event
May 5, 2019, Online

Watch live on SBA’s Facebook page (https://www.facebook.com/SBAgov/) on May 5th at 6pm ET as the SBA announces the SBA Resource Partners awards. Join us!


National #SmallBusinessWeek Awards Ceremonies: Facebook Live EventNational #SmallBusinessWeek Awards Ceremonies: Facebook Live Event
May 6, 2019, Online

Watch live on SBA’s Facebook page (https://www.facebook.com/SBAgov/) on May 6th at 12:45pm ET as the SBA announces the Exporter of the Year, Federal Procurement, Small Business Persons of the Year, and National Small Business Person of the Year awards. Join us!


National #SmallBusinessWeek Virtual Conference EventNational #SmallBusinessWeek Virtual Conference Event
May 7, 2019, Online

The U.S. Small Business Administration and SCORE will host a 2-Day Virtual Conference during National Small Business Week. The conference will take place Tuesday, May 7 – Wednesday, May 8 between 11:00 AM – 5:30 PM Eastern / 8:00 AM – 2:30 PM Pacific each day. Registration is FREE to the public. Learn new strategies, network, and chat with industry experts! This 2-day event will include webinars, business advice, giveaways, free resources, and networking chat rooms for business owners and entrepreneurs.


Listening to the Voice of the Customer Listening to the Voice of the Customer
October 16, 2019, Chicago, Illinois

Led by veteran product development and market research experts, this course will introduce Voice of the Customer (VOC) market research and teach you to use it to accelerate innovation in business-to-business markets. The workshop uses a lively, interactive format with numerous hands-on activities and practice exercises to build skills and will also expose you to the latest applications of these techniques in areas such as machine learning and journey mapping.
Discount Code
SMALLBIZ ($100 Off)


More Events

More Contests

This weekly listing of small business events, contests and awards is provided as a community service by Small Business Trends.

You can see a full list of events, contest and award listings or post your own events by visiting the Small Business Events Calendar.

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Boost Facebook content to reach more customers

Give your Facebook strategy a boost

There are a variety of approaches you can take to attract new customers to your independent venture on Facebook. Using social media to spread organic word-of-mouth is an important tool to drive brand awareness and get new customers in the door — and paid content, including boosted Facebook content, has become a key element that helps increase brand awareness and exposure.

Incorporating both a compelling organic and paid content plan into your Facebook strategy, by boosting Facebook content, is an effective way to engage your loyal fans and reach the maximum amount of potential new customers.

Once you’ve posted something engaging on Facebook, you can take an extra step by boosting that content to get your message in front of the right audience.

What do we mean by “boosting content”?

Boosted posts are a way to reach new people who are likely interested in your business but aren’t currently your fans on Facebook. When you boost a post, you have the potential to reach more people and entice current fans and potential new customers to visit your business.

When you create posts on your Facebook Business Page, there’s a blue “Boost Post” button that pops up on some posts after you publish. You can choose to boost a post, or in other words, turn organic content into paid content, to reach both a wide and targeted audience and attract new customers.

“Boosting a post may help you get more people to like, share and comment on the posts you create. Boosted posts are also a way to reach new people who are likely interested in your content but don’t currently follow you on Facebook. Your boosted post can include a call-to-action button so that you can drive people to take other actions you care about, like booking an appointment, signing up for a newsletter, getting in touch with your business and more.” — Facebook

Note: This is different than creating a Facebook Ad. While boosting a post is still considered an ad, Facebook ads are created through Ads Manager and have more customization options.

Before you boost a post on Facebook, check out these tips to ensure you’re setting yourself up for success:

Get your Facebook page and posting strategy in order

First, it’s essential that you build up your presence on Facebook before boosting any content in order to get the most for your money. Consider the following questions:

  • Are you posting regularly on your Facebook page?
  • Is that content getting engagement?
  • Are the majority of your followers liking, sharing, and commenting on your posts?
  • Are you doing anything to increase your number of followers?

The answer to all of these questions should be, “yes,” before you begin boosting content. This is true because when you boost content, your post will reach people who don’t currently like or follow your page. Once they see your boosted content, they might navigate to your page to take a look at your other content. If these new visitors come to your page, you’ll want to make sure it’s telling your story and that it has other great content they can take a look at once they land there. That way, they’ll be able to understand what you business is all about — and they’ll be more likely to give your business a visit.

Choose the post you will boost wisely

Next, think about high-quality content you’d like to feature. Typically, a good post to put some money behind is for an event, special, discount or promotion. You’ll need a great photo, video or graphic to use for this post in order to engage customers — any image you use for Facebook will need to be less than 20% text. If you need to explain more about the promotion in addition to the image, include that information within the copy of the post.

Pro Tip: Before you boost, publish your post on Facebook and give it some time to get some organic reach and engagement. Boosted posts tend to perform better if they have garnered organic engagement first.

Set goals for the results you want

It’s important before you boost a post to understand who you’re trying to reach and why.

  • Are you putting money behind this post to bring more customers into your business?
  • Is this a campaign for brand awareness?
  • Are you looking to gain more followers?

Once you nail down what you’re trying to achieve with the campaign, that will help inform your copy, the audience you’re trying to target and how long you want to run the campaign.

Target to your ideal audience

The next step is to get it in front of the right audience — as many of your ideal customers as possible. Boosting a post will ensure that your post reaches potential customers outside of your current network (who don’t currently follow you) and more of the right people in your community to bring them in your door, so think about who exactly you’re trying to reach.

“You can define a new audience based on things like location, interests and more. You can also create a custom audience based on contacts you already have or a lookalike audience based on people who’ve already shown interest in your business Page.” –Facebook

Plus, targeting the post effectively will maximize the number of impressions you’ll get — some people will see the content again and again, keeping your business top-of-mind with consumers who are likely to spend money with your business.  

Don’t overdo it

Don’t inundate your audience with promotional content. You’ll reach new audiences and engage your followers by posting high-quality, varied organic content. Use boosted posts to give that extra push to get quality posts in front of a wider audience and to get more eyes on your brand. Even 1-2 boosted posts a month can create successful results.

Track results

To review the performance of your boosted post, go to your Business page on Facebook, and navigate to the Facebook Insights tab. Here, you can see the extent of the reach of your post, any meaningful actions (link clicks, video views) on the part of potential new fans and customers, and money spent. With these insights, you can strategize — analyzing what worked and what didn’t to go confidently into your next campaign.

Sound like a lot? We understand. GoDaddy Social can help.

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How to Create an e-Commerce Facebook Ads Strategy: A Case Study


3 Ways to Create Your Facebook Ads Strategy for An e-Commerce Site

People are on Facebook to chat with friends, to see friend’s photos, to meet old friends and so on. You can’t immediately start selling your products or services to people who don’t know you. They have to understand who you are, what you can offer them, why they need you, and why they have to buy from you instead of your competitors.

You have to earn their trust.

To begin the trust process, I often create a Facebook Ads strategy for my clients based on 3 different phases:

  1. Brand Awareness
  2. Engagement
  3. Conversion

Brand Awareness Campaigns

In the first phase, Brand Awareness, our goal is to make people connect with the brand/product/service. Once they know the brand, they will know who the company is, what they can buy from them, what its standards are, and the benefits of investing in their a product or service.

The first campaign is focused on growing the page to increase the number of targeted fans. By “targeted”, I mean people who are really interested in investing in a related product or service.

I usually use a corporate or product image for this kind of campaign with copy that shows the values and the corporate features of the brand or the Company. People that see the ad are more prone to think “Wow, why haven’t I heard about this brand before?”

Engagement Campaigns

In the second phase, Engagement, my goal is to establish a relationship with the fans of the page. The goal is to receive likes, comments, shares, and maybe questions about how to buy the product or the service.

In an engagement campaign, I usually use a video that immediately highlights the benefits, the advantages and/or the main strengths of a product or a service.

Below is an example of an Italian e-commerce store that sells “Made in Italy” oil (sorry; copy is in Italian): 

figure-2.pngFigure 2: A campaign video

Let’s see the performances of this campaign:

  • Timing: Campaign was live from November 5th to 10th.
  • Budget: 50 euros (so less than 10 euros per day).
  • Goal: At least 20,000 people to reach, and more than 50 engagement keys (likes, comments, shares).
  • Results: 40,315 people reached, 69 likes and 22 shares + direct messages to know how to buy the oil.

As you can see in 5 days with 50 euros, we reached brilliant results.

Campaigns for Conversions

The third phase, Conversion, is focused on selling the products to people who already know this product because they are a fan of the page or have visited the e-commerce site several times before deciding to buy (retargeting).

For this kind of campaign, I use the carousel to show more products at a glance or a customized image with products I have to sell.

Facebook Ads are extremely powerful for commerce that promotes a special offer or discount (in my experience, the discount has to be strong; for instance, 50%) or free shipping.

How a Beauty e-Commerce Earned 11.875 Euros in 5 Days with Facebook Ads

Here is a brief case study of a beauty e-commerce that sells hair products. Let’s look at the results during a Black Friday promotion!

  • Timing: from November, 21th to 25th.
  • Budget: 1.300 euros.
  • Results: 166 purchases.
  • Cost per result: 7.83.
  • Purchases Conversion Value: 11.875 euros

These results are amazing: I spent 1.300 euros, and I earned 11.875 euros in 5 days.

This is the ad:

figure-3.pngFigure 3: A successful ad campaign

Let’s Analyze the Campaign Starting From the Structure

1. I chose a “Conversions” campaign since my goal was selling products (not traffic to website or engagement).

2. I tracked “Purchase” ad event.

figure-4.pngFigure 4: Purchase conversion

3. Audience.

I used retargeting:

  • People who visited the website in the last 60 days.
  • People who made a purchase on the website in the last 60 days.
  • People who added to cart products in the last 60 days.
  • Email leads of customers of the last 3 months.
  • Lookalike.

I also targeted my audience for interests (I chose hair brand names and beauty interests).

  • Location: Italy.
  • Age: 24-55 years, only women.

4. Platforms: I chose only Facebook feeds, Instagram feed and Audience Network.

5. Copy: It was very minimal, clear and it focused on keywords such as “Black Friday”, “capelli” (= hair), “bellezza” (= beauty), “SCONTO” (= sale).

  • The sale amount is clearly expressed: 50%.
  • Also, the title highlights the percentage of discount.
  • The copy was brief, and it was easy to read: focus only on the discount — no more information. 

In this case, the copy was very short; in other cases, you can try a longer copy.

Research Tip

I suggest you use the Topic Research tool from SEMrush to find ideas for keywords your customers use; it is so important to use the same language that your users do in your marketing — including on Facebook.

figure-5.pngFigure 5: Topic Research – SEMrush

With data from the Topic Research tool, you will have an idea of which copy/keywords to use for your ad. You can find your creative inspiration will providing the information your target audience is looking for.

6. Image: I used a collage of real products (not an image you can find on a stock image website), and the consumer attention is pulled to the middle by a big circle that shows the huge discount.

7. Call-to-Action: I used “Shop Now”.

You have to choose a call-to-action according to what you ask your customer to do. Get straight to the point.

Conclusion

I explained these three steps process for Black Friday promotion, but you can adopt it throughout the year. If you decide to promote your business on Facebook, you have to advertise on it not only during strong promotion days (such as Black Friday or Christmas sales) but also throughout several months of the year.

In this case, I recommend you to think about a strategy that could bring you real interested customers. I have already said that you have to earn people trust before trying to sell them your products or services, so I suggest that you create some ads throughout the year with different goals:

1. Start From a Like campaign to get fans interested in your brand (Facebook Audience Insights can help you a lot); you have to add real targeted fans to your page. This kind of campaign should run almost 15 days per month. I have seen in my experience that even 5€ per day is great.

2. Promote Videos throughout the year, in particular just before you launch your products or services sale. Your goal here is to get engagements on videos, especially people who ask for more information about your brand and what you do or sell. If you don’t have any, think about creating them. Videos are effective and extremely engaging. A tip for you: when creating your campaign’s audience, type your brand name’s competitors in the “Detailed targeting” section. For instance, if I am promoting a digital marketing event, I can type “Social Media Week” and other similar events:

How to Create an e-Commerce Facebook Ads Strategy: A Case Study. Image 4Figure 6: detailed targeting

So you can show your ad to people who are interested in your competitors’ activities.

3. When you have built your trusted audience, it is the right moment to sell your products or service. Remember that you can’t sell to “cold audience” on Facebook: if people don’t know you, they won’t buy anything from you. So, focus on retargeting.

Show your ad to “hot audience”, that means an audience that is inclined to buy from you. People who:

  • Already visited your website during the last 90 days.
  • Already visited your purchase page during the last 30 days.
  • Watched your videos at almost 50%.
  • Already purchased from you (or added to cart) during the last 90 days.

Retargeting on Facebook is really powerful for sales.

3 Issues That Can Negatively Affect Your Facebook Campaigns

In my experience as a Facebook Ads manager for clients, I have committed three errors that I am going to share with you so that you can avoid them.

1. Creating Ads Quickly

For many reasons (clients pressure, enthusiasm, too many ongoing projects) you may think you can create a campaign in just 1 hour.

Wrong.

It takes a lot of time, sometimes even if 8 or 10 hours to create a single campaign. The risks you want to avoid are selecting the wrong audience and create boring advertising.

Take your time when:

  • Analyzing data from Facebook Audience Insights.
  • Analyzing the language of your audience; how do your target talk on forums, blogs, and social networks? 
  • Creating attractive images or videos.
  • Writing persuasive copy.

2. Running the Same Campaign For a Long Time (i.e., one month).

Wrong. It is better to concentrate all of your budget in a short period campaign rather than splitting your budget into several days.

For example, if you have to promote a product, tell people your promotion will expire in 3 days, so your campaign will be online for a few days. It is better to spend 200 euros in 3 days than 200 euros in 20 days.

3. Making Ads Complex

Wrong. Make your ad easy:

  • Easy to read
  • Easy to understand

You have a few seconds to grab your customer’s attention on Facebook, so avoid complicated copywriting, complicated discounts or strange images. 

Simplicity is the best choice:

  • Get straight to the point in a few short sentences.
  • Show your products or an image that visually explain the benefits of what you are trying to sell.

I hope this article can be useful to you. I am glad to answer to your comments or thoughts below. 

Facebook Had a Very Bad Week Last Week, and Things Did Not Improve Today

The social media giant’s stock price has been suffering from a raft of bad headlines in the past week.

3 min read

Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own.

Between executive departures, network outages and the live broadcast of a New Zealand terrorist attack on its network, it’s no wonder that Needham analyst Laura Martin downgraded Facebook to a hold this morning, citing the recent departures of eleven senior managers at the company as an ominous sign for the social media giant. The stock fell 3.32 percent, the second biggest drop on the Entrepreneur Index™ today.

The broader market posted moderate gains as economic data suggested businesses are still in growth mode. The Bureau of Labor Statistics reported that job vacancies jumped to 7.6 million in January, significantly above estimates and a sign that companies are not yet anticipating a slowdown in their business. The S&P 500 and Nasdaq Composite indexes were up 0.37 percent and 0.34 percent respectively, while the Dow index, dragged down in part by a 1.77 percent drop in Boeing shares, was up 0.25 percent. The Entrepreneur Index™ closed the day with a gain of 0.51 percent.

L Brands had the biggest gain on the Entrepreneur Index™ today, rising 3.27 percent. The company announced that its Victoria’s Secret brand would resume selling previously discontinued swimwear online because of “overwhelming demand.” The stock has been particularly volatile of late as investors anticipate a restructuring of the company because of poor sales at Victoria’s Secret. It is up 6.9 percent this year and down 32.3 percent over the last twelve months.

Fedex corp. was up 2.48 percent today. The delivery giant, a good proxy for global economic growth, will report earnings tomorrow. There is growing concern in the analyst community that Amazon‘s plans to deliver more of its own packages with its growing fleet of vans and airplanes will eventually hurt Fedex and UPS. Fedex shares are down 27.6 percent in the last year.

Other notable gains on the Entrepreneur Index™ included investment bank Jefferies Financial Group (2.42 percent) and clothing-maker Ralph Lauren Corp. (2.84 percent). Chipotle Mexican Grill was also up 2.63 percent after a Piper Jaffray analyst reaffirmed an overweight rating on the stock and set a price target of $725. It currently trades at $656.

Medical device maker Boston Scientific had the biggest decline on the Entrepreneur Index™ today, falling 5.57 percent. The drop was apparently in response to positive results from the testing of non-invasive heart valve replacement procedures by competitors Edwards LifeSciences and Medtronic that were reported over the weekend. Both companies released data that suggested lower mortality and stroke rates among patients than those receiving valve replacements with Boston Scientific’s Lotus Edge system.

Other major declines on the Entrepreneur Index™ included Tesla (-2.14 percent) and retailer Bed Bath & Beyond (-1.96 percent). Drug-makers Regeneron Pharmaceuticals (-1.66 percent) and Alexion Pharmaceuticals (-1.9 percent) were down sharply as well. The REIT sector was also weak today with Apartment Investment and Management Co. (-1.95 percent) and Essex Property Trust (-1.09 percent) posting the biggest declines.

The Entrepreneur Index™ collects the top 60 publicly traded companies founded and run by entrepreneurs. The entrepreneurial spirit is a valuable asset for any business, and this index recognizes its importance, no matter how much a company has grown. These inspirational businesses can be tracked in real time on Entrepreneur.com.