Sunday 26th October

The Pulse

Seven Really, Really Easy Ways to Get More Business via Facebook

Daylan Pearce Written by
Featured, From MYOB, The Web Print Page
25
Nov
facebook

A couple of weeks ago we discussed a few great ways to promote your business online. Among this discussion was the use of platforms such as creating an MYOB Atlas site, setting up a Google Places account and of course the most popular choice, a Facebook Business page.

Now Facebook may be seen as the working days number one enemy when it comes to procrastination and time wasting, but you cannot underestimate its potential for content to reach both a massive and extremely targeted audience. It’s a data goldmine of over 800 million active users, of which more than 50% log in daily.

Be it via shared content between users or purchased ads that can be targeted to a group of a handful of individuals, sharing content on Facebook can help grow the visibility of a business very quickly.

Setting up a business page is the easy part though, and unless you’re one of the ’big boys’ like Coca-cola or Apple, building your audience can prove to be quite tricky. So we’ve put together a few tips that can help your business page reach its maximum potential on Facebook.

#1 –  Attach a fan page Widget to your website

It’s rare these days to visit a site and not see that ‘little blue thumbs up’ icon sitting somewhere within the content. But this little icon can prove to be very beneficial for websites. Every time someone clicks on this a notification is sent to that persons Facebook page notifying both them and their friends (of which the average user has approx 130) of your website or fan page. Not only is your site being promoted it’s also essentially being recommended by someone who the audience presumably knows and trusts.

#2 – Tag relevant and popular pages in your updates.

The @ symbol is one of the most powerful little tools a business page can utilize on Facebook. If you’re about to post some relevant content that you think an audience of a certain person or group may enjoy, then attaching @ and then the user/pages name, your update will then also be posted to their wall. This not only exposes your update to your followers, but also to their audience. NOTE: Some pages/users don’t really dig their wall being hijacked for your marketing purposes so it’s important you know your audience and relationships when using this tactic or else you could end up on a block list.

#3 – Put a link onto your personal profile(s)

Including a link to your business page on your personal page is the easiest form of promotion. Even if your personal page is set to private, making this part of your information public allows your business page link to be seen by anyone who visits your profile. The same tactic can be used to apply your URL to other online platforms – LinkedIn, YouTube etc.

#4 – Share content that will be shared

Posting content and links to interesting, informative and relevant content both from your site and external sites can help boost your profile as a subject matter expert. It can also prove to be content that gets shared between readers – each share then attributes that link to your page/profile, giving your more exposure of a users friend list.

#5 – Customise your fan page URL

Which one of these is more memorable: http://facebook.com/MYOBTeam or  http://facebook.com/141517196670 ?

Be sure to customize your fanpage URL  – otherwise known as Vanity URL – as soon as possible. This setting is available in your Edit Page settings – Basic Information. You need to have 25+ fans or ‘likes’ to receive a vanity URL.

#6 – Assign your Facebook vanity URL to other collateral

Add your Facebook Business Page URL to any other collateral you may have. Think of it as another web presence so promote it whenever possible (suitable). Add it to your business card, just as you would your email address or website URL. Attach it as a link in your email signature or in the footer of any invoices you may send out.

#7 – Invest in Facebook advertising

As mentioned above, Facebook is a data goldmine that lets you focus advertising to an audience as targeted as you want. I recently read this great story about a guy who created an ad specifically for his wife. He was able to target the ad to be displayed to only a handful of a possible 800 million people. He attached a photo of his son to the ad so it would grab her attention and within a couple of days his wife noticed it. This is a great example of how deep Facebook lets you mine user data and target their exact needs, likes and skills.
EG: If you’re a wedding make-up artist, Facebook ads easily allows you to target your ads so as it will only show up to who you want to see – in this case may be females, engaged, who mentioned the words ‘wedding’ or ‘make-up’ in their statuses, who live in your nearby area.

It’s a very powerful tool and still in it’s infancy, so getting on board in these early(ish) days could prove to be very beneficial.

Of course, there are hundreds of other options available to promote your page, get more fans and most importantly get more business via Facebook. Your audience, business model and marketing plan all play a part in how and why you would use Facebook to find more business. With each different business, comes a whole other set of potential marketing opportunities and strategies.

Do you have any other strategies or tricks you’ve found useful to promote your page via Facebook? We’d love to hear about them.

Oh and one last tip, if you happen to find or contribute to any blogs/forums that are relevant to your business, then it may be a great opportunity to promote your page. It may be a bit cheeky, but if these guys can get away with it, then you probably can to.

Daylan Pearce | Online Search/Content Producer – MYOB

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What others are saying

  1. Author

    Paul Hassing

    November 25, 2011 at 2:49 pm

    Hi, Daylan. Though NOT a fan of Facebook ( http://myob.com.au/blog/off-my-facebook/ ) even I can sense that these are really good ideas. Many thanks for sharing! P. :)

    • Daylan Pearce

      Author

      Daylan Pearce Online Search/Content Producer

      November 25, 2011 at 8:02 pm

      Cheers Paul.
      I figure with 800million+ Facebook users there is a whole lot of noise out there. Hopefully these tips can help some businesses stand out from that noise a little.
      Thanks again mate.

  2. Author

    MyCarBudget

    November 25, 2011 at 4:54 pm

    The numbers are certainly there the interaction with “likers” is the hard bit. Competitions to get likes are also good although technically not allowed by FB you can promote such on your website or outside of FB (or through an authorised app). Connecting your FB posts with Twitter also pushes them out to your twitter feed and can bring your twitter followers to your FB page via the links you provide.

    In terms of advertising, the profiling bit is really interesting but I am yet to see a case study on how someone has actually made it work for them, ie targetted a particulary category and had real conversion from it.

    • Daylan Pearce

      Author

      Daylan Pearce Online Search/Content Producer

      November 25, 2011 at 8:12 pm

      Yeah I know what you mean. The ‘likers’ part has also become a little trickier lately too since Facebook opened up pages to everyone. (previously comments and interaction could only occur once you liked the page, now the like isn’t necessary).

      I see a lot of ads that have their likes listed in (or just below) the copy now. Rather than asking for the like it seems like businesses are getting a little smarter regarding their content. The ‘if you build it they will come’ approach. Give them a reason to ‘like’ and they will. If you aren’t giving them that reason but you probably don’t deserve the like. All comes down to content and offering.

      As for the profiling, I agree. It’s super cool what you can do, but I’m yet to hear of a really awesome FB ad campaign thats targeted deeply and successfully either. But it’s only a matter of time and then everyone will be jumping on board (my guess).

  3. Author

    Stephen Hamilton

    November 28, 2011 at 10:18 am

    Hey Daylan.
    You’re right about just how granular you can get about marketing to particular types of people on Facebook through their advertising. And apparently they are working on ways to make this more sophisticated.

    I’ve riffed on this before, but I’m a bit torn when it comes to Facebook. Although this can be very useful as a marketer, the thought of unscrupulous people using this creeps me out.

    • Daylan Pearce

      Author

      Daylan Pearce Online Search/Content Producer

      November 28, 2011 at 10:36 am

      Hey Stephen,
      Yeah, I reckon it’s a little bit unerving too. I recently went to a talk from a bunch of leaders in the search space and all but one pretty much admitted that we just have to accept that privacy is becoming a thing of the past. Comments like that scare me a little too.
      There’s an article in The Age today about how certain data is being blocked in EU from advertisers because of how deep Facebook are mining into data.

      http://www.theage.com.au/technology/security/facebook-personal-tracking-hits-snag-20111127-1o1k6.html

      As you mentioned, it’s great if you’re a marketer but on a human level quotes like “The social network is eavesdropping on its users to gather information about their political opinions, sexuality, religious beliefs and even their whereabouts…” make you question whether or not you’re selling your life away just to be able to ‘share a sheep on Farmville’ or read your mate from high school’s latest status update. Data – it’s the new world currency.

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