2020 has been a challenging year for small businesses, to say the least. Let’s face it, every year is tough when you’re running a small business, but COVID has made 2020 even worse. Well, finally, there’s some good news for small business owners. Facebook has introduced a free tool called “Paid Online Events”.


What Is Facebook’s New Paid Online Events Tool?

While there’s no doubt that they will profit from the tool in the future, Facebook says it will offer the new service for free for at least the first year. This is a great opportunity for small businesses to take advantage of their generosity in a year where budgets are even tighter than usual. So how does it work?


Paid Online Events allows businesses and others (creators, educators, media publishers, etc.) to set up paid events or classes online and keep 100% the revenue themselves (except on iOS, where event hosts must give up the 30% “App-Store tax,” as Facebook calls it). Hosting, promotion, ticket sales, and payment processing are all included. For those who’ve used tools like Eventbrite in the past, that could be a nice savings on ticketed events.


How Can You Use Paid Online Events to Promote Your Business?

The ways to use this new free tool are as varied as the businesses on Facebook. You could host expert talks, trivia events, podcast recordings, how-to videos, cooking classes, meet and greets, fitness classes, the list goes on. With COVID concerns forcing so many events to be held virtually, people will be even more inclined to participate online.


With the holidays right around the corner, start thinking of holiday-themed events, sales, and promotions. With most in-person holiday events canceled, many people will be starved for holiday-themed anything that they can participate in to fill that emotional void. This year especially, holiday events may pay off bigger than ever.


Simply create an event, promote it to your organic followers, and collect payment through Facebook. (You need to link a bank account to receive payment.) You can also promote it through Facebook ads to increase exposure and attendance if your budget allows. You can even create custom audiences from event attendee lists. Event creators will need to comply with Facebook’s partner monetization policies and other requirements.


Why Facebook May Be the Best Place to Advertise Right Now

There’s a reason that over 90 million small businesses are on Facebook. According to a recent report from PEW Research, 74% of US adults who make $75,000 or more annually use Facebook so it stands to reason that a social platform is a good place for businesses to find customers with expendable income. Every business is different, but if you have a good following on Facebook, paid online events could create a new revenue stream to help your business recover from 2020 losses, and the time to try it is now while they are offering it at no charge.

Facebook 101

There are a lot of tips and tricks for using Facebook effectively. Here are a few other  free tools you should be using:

1.    Use the Insights Tool to Determine the Success of Your Campaigns
Facebook Insights is a free analytics tool. Use it to analyze data like actions taken, page views, number of people reached, number of engagements with posts, and more. By using this information, you can measure the effectiveness of your posts/campaigns and improve them.

2. Use Social Media Management Tools
You should post regularly (2-3 times per week). You can use Facebook Publishing Tools to schedule posts to go live in the future. This tool makes it faster and easier to create and schedule multiple posts to run later. Or, you may prefer to use third-party management tools such as the emfluence Marketing Platform, Hootsuite or Buffer.

3. Targeting Tools Help You Reach the Right Audience
Facebook provides targeting tools to help you make sure the right people see your posts. When you’re promoting a post, you can target specific demographics, locations, and interest groups. Use the targeting tools Facebook offers for better results, or bring in your CRM segments or ecommerce sales to layer additional touchpoints in your sales process.

4. Create and Advertise Events
Create events and promote them to a targeted audience on Facebook. Take advantage of the Paid Online Events tool for free now as there will be a fee later. Events can be a fun way to turn audience members into customers.

5. Create Facebook Videos with Facebook Live
Videos do quite well on Facebook. You can create Facebook videos through Facebook Live, which allows you to broadcast to a large audience for free. With Facebook Live, you can even have real-time conversations with followers. For more tips on how to effectively use Facebook Live.
If you need help setting up, managing, and selling on Facebook or other social media platforms contact us at expert@emfluence.com or use the form below.

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