fbwineFacebook is now big business for wineries looking to extend their web presence.

Some wineries report up to 40% of all social media web traffic comes from Facebook. Here are a few tips to ensure you’re getting the most from this free social media platform.

1. Keep it simple.

Remember most are reading your post in their content stream and usually on an inch by inch phone. So keep your post short and sweet. Links are awesome and pictures are grand. Blog posts are not. Save those for a direct email to your list or include a link to read the full post.

2. Ensure your winery is set up as a “Page” and complete your “About” section.search

This may seem basic, but you won’t believe the number of wineries we see that either have set up their winery under a personal profile, a place profile, or a page without information.
  • Personal Profile: These are for individuals and have limited business features. While you can make your winery from one of these options, it doesn’t provide the variety and insight as a Facebook page.
  • Place: This is a location, and has similar information (address, hours of operation, facilities, etc.) You can claim your place and add a logo, but any customer can set up a location/place for you. This is used most often on mobile devices.
  • Page: This is used by most businesses and allows you to share information about your winery, create events, and view analytics on your page. It’s the recommended option for wineries to maximize your audience reach.
Tip: Search your winery name on Facebook to see how many times you are mentioned on Facebook. If you have multiple places, pages or people, merge them into one page location.  And, when you do this, don't forget to look at different spellings or variations of your name.

3. Don’t “like” your own post.

This often happens when multiple people from one winery are posting. It can appear disorganized or self-important to “appreciate” yourself. Leave that for your customers to like and share.

4. Do “Like” others.

We often hear from wineries lamenting they aren’t seeing the engagement they desire on Facebook. And when we ask, “have you engaged with anyone?” we get blank stares. If all your winery is doing is broadcasting out news, you can’t expect others to have a conversation with you. Watch your neighbors or colleagues. Congratulate your partners and accounts. Be a good social neighbor. Then those posts will be seen by others, and you’ll be surprised how fast your social “street cred” grows. And we all like a little street cred, right?

5. Advertise.

fbadFacebook, just like your winery, is a business and as a business, they need to produce a profit. And if you throw just a little money their way, Facebook’s “Algorithm” takes you more seriously, and you will start to see better viewership. The good news is advertising on Facebook is inexpensive, very targeted, and relatively easy. You can promote an event, promote a post (like a recipe or score) or just promote your page. And using the targeting features – for example, you can find wine drinkers over 21 in certain areas that like Pinot Noir. The risk is low so test out $5-$50, and see what results you can achieve.

6. Try different things, and be true to yourself.

Facebook will tell you asking questions works, some will say memes (pictures with funny captions), while others swear by polls. We say read your audience. Sometimes you have a “smart” group that wants statistics on biodynamics and links to studies. Maybe you have a “social” group that wants pictures of your vineyard dog. Facebook is an extension of your brand. So keep being YOU, post what is relevant to your fans, and they will respond.

7. Check your stats.

So if you’re trying other things (see #6) how do you know if they’re working? The stats don’t lie. Make it a point to look at the insights. Facebook is helpful because they provide you with detailed statistics on all your visitors, posts and page views. Rivaling Google Analytics, with a little effort you will know exactly the reaction you’re getting.

stats

8. Post photos.

Facebook has recently undergone a “facelift” to focus more on photos, and they favor posts that include photos. So if you want more of your fans to see your posts, include a photo. Photos are often the highest engagement and the most often forwarded posts for many wineries.

9. Remember your objectives.

storeDon’t forget Facebook is a tool, not an end in itself. If you’re looking to drive traffic to your website, then check out your Google Analytics and make sure Facebook is accomplishing that goal for you. Also, link frequently to your site from Facebook. If you are trying to sell wine directly, then be sure you are liking, linking and supporting those goals. There are many ways to set up and manage your focus Facebook. Make sure you are using this valuable tool toward your key objectives.

10. Use the tools available.

Go to one of the larger wineries Facebook pages and look at their tabs. They may have dozens. If you search Facebook apps, there are literally hundreds of tools for Facebook that will load in a contact list, Twitter feed, YouTube videos, or wine list. The most relevant is the free Social Candy plug in through Vintank that puts your wine shopping cart right on your Facebook page. Get to know these tools, and take the time to set them up. Head spinning or what to know more? Attend our Facebook Workshop on May 22.

How to Make Facebook Work for your Winery May 22 | 9am - 12pm

This workshop will be led by Susan DeMatei, Owner of Wine Glass Marketing, and provides attendees a collaborative working session on Facebook. Attendees will learn:
  • How to create a schedule for posts
  • Best practices for integrating Facebook into your winery marketing
  • How to read and interpret the insights (metrics) section
  • How the most recent changes to Facebook (such as rich stories, choice feeds, and mobile consistency) affect you and your winery
Open to all employees responsible for creating and/or executing social media at the winery. Space is limited to 8 attendees. RSVP by May 17, 2013. VingDirect Member Fee (per attendee) Members: $250-$300 Non Members: $350