Every pet business owner I’ve met loves Facebook and wants to learn ways to reach more people on there.
Navigating the platform can feel like quicksand with ever changing algorithms, fiddly pixels and having to ‘pay to play.’
Sarah Robinson, founder of Frank and Jelly’s which is a review website described as ‘Which for Dogs,’ had a reach of over a million in a month.
A self confessed ‘Facebook addict,’ she has over 15,000 people following her business page and has built a highly engaged tribe of fans.
I spoke to her about her astonishing month where her reach hit seven figures and her tips for other petpreneurs wanting to up their Facebook game.
These were her key takeaways.
- Know your audience and exactly what is going to resonate with them and create an emotional response.
- Ask questions. Make your content about them and not you!
- Create a community so people return regular and get FOMO!
- Give value. Make posts that inform, educate and entertain.
- Keep your audience on Facebook. Don’t link out to other websites.
- Collaborate with other pet businesses so you can both grow your followings.
- Don’t be boring and vanilla and try to please everyone. Be you and stand out from the crowd.
- Before you post ask yourself, ‘Why would anyone care?’
You can watch the video:
Sarah and I spoke because earlier this week the supermarket Sainsbury’s announced they would no longer be selling fireworks.
As a dog owner, Sarah knew this would be of huge significance to her audience, many of whom might have pets who are frightened of fireworks.
She told how she shared a post asking for their feelings on the story and in just one day it had reached over 71,000 people.
Here is the post on Frank and Jelly’s Facebook page: What are your thoughts on Sainsbury’s firework ban?
Sarah’s had a monthly reach of a million and says for success like this it’s important it is to keep people on Facebook and not take them off to other websites.
She explained: “Facebook looks at comments, likes and shares, particularly shares, and will show your post to more people according to how many a post gets.
“If you are trying to send people away from Facebook it is going to penalise you. So yesterday, I didn’t put in the link to the story on the Daily Mail.
“I knew that Facebook would ban it. Rather than that I did a screenshot of the Daily Mail article, put a post up and said, ‘What are your thoughts?’
“It’s about engagement. If you’re not asking questions people aren’t going to comment and engage in your community.
“You have to be seen as a thought leader.”
Sarah says pet professionals also need to educate their followers, and shared an example of a pet photographer giving tips on lighting and getting their dog to pose.
She explained: “People need to change their mindsets. If you’re a photographer, don’t think, ‘Oh I can’t possibly teach people to take their own photos.’
“You can because the majority of people can’t be bothered to do it themselves so they’ll still come to you when they need photography.
“You have to give more than you take.”
Investing in learning about Facebook is also part of Sarah’s strategy.
She spent money and educated herself about the platform.
Sarah urges people to do the same and says if you pay, you pay attention. Her courses cost upwards of £500 but the impact has been worth the investment.
“I’m a bit of a course junkie,” she says. “I think if you want to have a successful business you should always be trying to reach up.”
Authentic is a word we hear so much and Sarah says businesses and brand should be themselves, and not try to be stuffy and corporate.
“People buy from people and they like stories, stories sell.” she said: “So be human and be more interested in your community than you are yourself.”
Sarah’s most successful post was a poem she penned through the eyes of a dog which she shared during this year’s heatwave.
Can you understand why this did so well? It appeals to the emotions and creates an emotional response.
It’s simple, snappy and so sharable. And Sarah has another poem to share on bonfire night too.
If you’d like to see more of Sarah’s posts, follow her Frank and Jelly’s Facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/dogproductreviews/
She also has a group Frank and Jelly’s product reviews if you’re interested in either pitching products or becoming a ‘doggy detective’ tester at https://www.facebook.com/groups/frankandjellysdogproductreviews/
Sarah has reach and engagement on Facebook that most of us dream of and the key message is to make it about your audience, not you.
Each time you post, think ‘why would anyone care?’
If you follow Sarah’s tips and see a difference, I would love to hear about it, so please pop a post tagging myself and Sarah in my group, https://www.facebook.com/groups/publicitytipsforpetbusinesses/
If you enjoyed this you might like to read How to use Twitter to get press coverage or Woof Woof Wednesday founder Katie shares how she built her pet business.