Facebook is a time suck! That’s the truth. Undisciplined and non-strategic business owners the world over spend a lot of time on Facebook that, let’s face it, could probably be spent on other areas of their business. It’s hard not to get sucked into the vortex and, before you know it, minutes or even hours have passed.
But with a bit of planning, a lot of discipline and some greater awareness – you can use Facebook to your advantage to listen to the audiences that matter, talk to the people that matter, and learn valuable industry and consumer insights – all without having to wade through screens and screens and screens of Facebook posts.
Enter Facebook Interest Lists.
When I presented this information to a workshop recently, I was surprised how few people used, or even knew about, Facebook Interests. So settle in and be amazed (cue dramatic intro music here).
WHY USE FACEBOOK INTERESTS?
Statistics show that Facebook users are exposed to over 1500 potential pieces of content every time they log in. Facebook Interest lists lets you categorise and sort the Pages you follow so that you have clearer visibility of the content you’re most interested in. (You can do the same with Facebook Friends lists – I’ll share a post on that later this week).
By using Facebook Interests, you get greater focus.
By creating a list of Industry Leaders, you can focus on up-to-date industry news. By creating a list of your Clients, you can watch and interact with your clients to build a stronger relationship. You can even create a private list of your Competitors, where you can watch their activity (without having to Like their page).
WHERE DO YOU FIND FACEBOOK INTERESTS?
Interests can be found in the left-hand sidebar of your Facebook News Feed. When you hover over the heading, a More option appears, and you can click on that to go into a list of all of your interests.
You can create your own interests list, or you can also follow the public lists of other people.
HOW DO I CREATE A FACEBOOK INTEREST LIST?
Click on the Add Interests button at the top of the Interests page.
At this point it will show you a list of Public lists you may be interested in – created by your friends or pages you follow. This can be a great place to start to get to know how Interests work.
To create your own list, click the Create Lists button.
Facebook will then show you the pages you Like, so that you can search easily for Pages that fit within this list. Or you can type Page names in the Search box. (Note: You don’t need to have Liked a page to be able to add it to your Interest list).
As an example – if you wanted to create a list of Media for your local area to keep up-to-date and look for PR opportunities, you could search for those pages and add them to the list.
Click on Next, and you will be taken to the final screen where you can give your List a name.
You can also choose the Privacy Settings for your list. If it is Public, anyone on Facebook can see your list and subscribe to it. If it’s Friends only, then only people that you are Friends with can see it and subscribe. If it is Only Me, then it is a Private list.
So if you think your list would be of value to your clients or potential clients, consider making it a Public List. But if you are stalking competitors using Lists, you’d best make that one Only Me.
Click on Done, and you’ve created your first list.
So now, if you go back to your Interests in your left-hand sidebar of your News Feed, and click on the List you just created, you will see the activity of just the pages on that list.
HOW DO I ADD PAGES TO AN INTEREST LIST LATER?
To add a page later to your newly created Interest, go back to the Interests on the left-hand side of Facebook, choose the relevant list, and once inside, click on Manage Lists.
Click on Edit List, and if you’re searching for specific pages, click on the drop down box on the left hand side and select Pages.
Then type the names of the Pages in the search box, click on those you wish to select, then click Finish. A, bingo, they’re added.
Another way is to go into a specific Page, and click on the Settings “cog” button on the right hand side and choose Add To Interest Lists.
And that, my friends, is Focused Facebook. There are so many ways you can use Interests in Business. Please leave a comment below with your own ideas of how you can use them to benefit your business.