When your bakery is active on social media, you're staying top of mind among your current customers, increasing awareness of your business with new consumers, providing better customer service, and even increasing sales.
Nearly half of U.S. consumers have tried a foodservice establishment because of a social media post the business published, according to a survey by marketing agency MGH. In addition, among consumers who actively follow and engage with food businesses on social media, 74% say they’re more likely to patronize those businesses.
Not only do people leverage social platforms to discover new food options, search locally, read reviews and learn more about businesses they want to visit; social media is fueling consumers’ desire to make food and eating occasions a memorable experience and part of their identity. They’re using social media channels—especially visual-centric ones like Facebook and Instagram—to share these experiences with others, signaling their lifestyle traits, preferences and beliefs to their followers through their food and dining choices.
And now more than ever, given the global cultural shift amid the COVID-19 pandemic, social media is vital for maintaining connections with customers, providing informative, helpful service, and marketing your bakery.
Get Your Bakery Started on Facebook
Facebook is the most used platform among consumers, according to the Sprout Social 2019 Index. Its pervasiveness across consumer demographics makes it an important marketing tool for your bakery.
Step 1: Sign Up
Go to facebook.com/pages/create. You’ll be prompted to provide details about your page, including:
- A page name: This should be the name of your business.
- The category of your business: Facebook allows you to pick multiple categories from a wide variety of options, whether you consider your business a bakery, a donut shop, a cafe, or something else.
- A short description explaining what your business does. This is a good place to briefly mention any of your bakery’s specialties or services, such as custom celebration desserts, catering or classes.
Once you click Create Page, your page will be published. But before you invite family, friends and customers to like your page, make sure to follow the rest of the steps.
Step 2: Upload a Profile Image and a Cover Image
For your profile image, use either your logo or another photo or illustration that features the name of your bakery prominently. Make sure your bakery’s name is easy to read, even on small phone screens.
For your cover photo, choose a high-quality horizontal image that represents your brand well, such as a photo of your baked goods or your storefront. Alternatively, you can also upload a cover video that’s 20 to 90 seconds long and at least 820 x 312 pixels.
Make sure to review your bakery’s profile on both a desktop computer and smartphone to ensure your cover photo or video align well on the page.
Step 3: Add Additional Business Details
Once you’re finished with the first two steps, you now have access to all of the page’s capabilities.
Add Additional Business Information: Under the Manage Page sidebar, select Edit Page Info. Here you can make updates to the information you’ve already added to your page and add other important details, such as:
- Contact information: your business phone number, email address and website
- Your bakery’s address
- Your business’ service area
- Your operating hours
With COVID-19, many bakeries have had to adjust their operations and hours. It’s critical to keep your business details accurate, as more people turn to social media as a primary source for up-to-date information.
Create a Call-to-Action Button: These can help Facebook users quickly complete an action from your page. Facebook offers several options, including “Buy a Gift Card,” “Order Food” and “Contact Us.” To add a call-to-action button, from the homepage, on the right of your profile image and business name, select the + Add a Button icon.
Pick a Template for Your Page: When you create your page, you’re given the standard template. However, Facebook offers templates specifically designed for different business types, including a Restaurants & Cafes option. Under the Manage Page sidebar, select Templates and Tabs. Under Template, select Edit and choose among the options.
Step 4: Create Your First Post
It’s time to share something about your bakery. While Facebook tends to be where people go for information like your bakery’s hours or menu, that doesn’t mean you can’t get creative and make your content unique and engaging. According to BuzzSumo’s 2019 Ultimate Guide to Facebook Engagement, the top three formats for posts were videos, questions and photos.
Visually, try short, inviting videos, like a dramatic chocolate drizzle or a pastry rising in the oven. Share photos of your best-selling product or perhaps what you baked fresh that very morning.
Invite your audience to engage with you by asking questions like, “What’s your favorite donut flavor?” or “What should we name our new cookie creation?” Posts can also include more in-depth information on your bakery happenings, like changing business hours, upcoming events and more.
The most important thing is to keep your communication consistent and on-brand. Try to post regularly, but make sure every post is relevant to your business and most importantly, your audience.
Step 5: Build your Community
Now it’s time to invite your family, friends and customers to like your page. Don’t forget to promote your Facebook page in your store and on your website.
Creating Unique Location Page for Your Bakery
Nearly half of U.S. consumers have tried a foodservice establishment because of a social media post the business published, according to a survey by marketing agency M. In addition, among consumers who actively follow and engage with food businesses on social media, 74% say they’re more likely to patronize those businesses.For franchised businesses or bakeries that have more than one location, you have the option to create separate pages for different locations.
To do this, you must have a main page set up first, as all the separate location pages will stem from the main page. The main page, often referred to as the parent page, should represent your entire brand, and it will not have its own store address. However, it will you allow you to share your business’s website and contact information.
There are many benefits to setting up a parent page and additional location pages, called child pages, including:
- Different locations can post unique content that’s relevant to their specific offerings or local audiences.
- Having various location pages optimizes searchability so Facebook users can easily find the bakery location nearest to them.
- You can ensure consistency with naming and branding across the main page and all location pages. You can use the main page to share brand-wide posts on all location pages.
- Pages will showcase a map with all of the business locations.
Advertising on Facebook
Once your page is up and running, you can start advertising. Many bakeries benefit from the low cost of advertising on Facebook compared to more traditional channels. In addition, the platform’s capabilities are fairly robust, yet easy to navigate, helping you better promote your bakery to the most relevant consumers for your business.
Under your Manage Page sidebar, select Ad Center. From there, you can create an ad, review past ads, look at in-depth summaries of how your ads are performing and create and update audiences, or groups of people you’d like to target based on different factors. Audiences enhance your targeting, and you have the option to create three different types:
- Core audience: Based on criteria like location, demographics, and interests.
- Custom audience: Upload contact lists you already have, like a customer email list.
- Lookalike audience: Target new people who are similar to your current customers.
Other advertising options include boosting your regular or organic posts so more people see and engage with them. To do this, publish a post and click Boost Post at the bottom.
Another advertising capability is to create an Offer, which are limited-time offers or discounts you can share with customers directly on Facebook. These can encourage people to shop on your website or visit your store.
For tips on maximizing your investment in Facebook advertising, read Facebook Targeting Tips for Bakeries
Increase Bakery Loyalty Through Social Media Engagement
Setting up your social media accounts and advertising are great first steps. It’s important to remember both Facebook and Instagram require ongoing maintenance, tweaking, experimenting and, perhaps most importantly, engaging.
Engagement means continuing to post consistently and often, but also communicating and responding to the people who are interacting with your account and posts and directly messaging you. That can be as simple as liking a flattering comment on your bakery’s photo or as complex as addressing a negative review.
In addition, both Facebook and Instagram offer customers the ability to message businesses privately, and it’s important to respond to those communications quickly.
Whoever is in charge of responding to customers on your social media accounts should have a strong understanding of the bakery’s brand and approach to customer service. After all, social media is a direct extension of both of these things.
Track Your Bakery's Social Media Success and Evolve Your Strategy
Once you’ve established your profiles on Facebook and Instagram, and begun posting, engaging with followers, and advertising regularly, it’s important to set aside time to review performance and make changes where needed. Learn more about key performance indicators to track: How to Measure Your Bakery's Success on Social Media.
In addition, you may find it helpful to automate posting and gain more in-depth analysis of your social media performance. Learn about free and low-cost social media scheduling tools for bakeries: Social Media Made Easy.
Being Mindful on Social Media in Times of Uncertainty
As we’re witnessing with COVID-19, the power and reach of social media is unmatched. Like never before, businesses have leveraged social media to connect and engage with their customers while physically apart—and provide them something to smile about.
But whether you’re keeping your audience preoccupied with dessert decorating kits as they’re staying at home during COVID-19, updating customers on closures due to inclement weather, or simply helping customers indulge in an everyday treat, it’s important to be sensitive and mindful of how your bakery’s social media posts may coincide with what is happening in the greater world.