How To Use Facebook To Grow Your Business

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A common question business people ask me is, "I'm not on Facebook and I'm not a teenager, so why should my business be on Facebook?".  Well, I'll give you the 5 best reasons for your business to be on Facebook and then I'll list for you over 50 ways your business can use your Facebook Business Fan Page so that you increase your business sales and profits. 

  1. Facebook pages are indexed by Google and viewable from the outside world.  So, you don't need to be on Facebook to view a Facebook page.  Facebook ranks number 3 on Google so if you have a Facebook page and someone is searching for your business online they are more likely to find you.
  2. You can't use a business name as a user name on Facebook and you are limited to 5,000 friends if you use a Facebook profile to represent your business - a major limitation if you want to have more than 5,000 fans or customers.
  3. Every time someone "Likes" your Facebook page or engages with your page Facebook will notify all of their friends (an average of 120 people).  This creates a viral effect which can dramatically increase the promotion and exposure of your business. With over 1 billion users Facebook represents a market you cannot ignore.
  4. A Facebook fan page is more interactive or social than a web page.  You are interacting with your existing fans or customers and potential customers.  You can run competitions, offer vouchers, encourage trials and you get to know your customers or prospects in a way which is more engaging and compelling than a website
  5. Setting up a Facebook Business Fan Page is free but managing it and growing its popularity and using it to grow your business sales is not easy and certainly not free. This means your competitors are probably doing it incorrectly.  So, with a bit of expert help and focus and a little investment from you the return for your business can be huge.

The way to grow your business sales by using your Facebook page is to firstly grow the number of people (fans) who "Like" your page.  More important though is to convert this number of "Likes" to engagement - people that are interacting with the content on your page and eventually buying the product or service that you are providing and telling all their friends about it.

Below are 50 ways that you can do this.  If you don't have the time or expertise to do this yourself, then please contact me and I can help your business maximize the use of Facebook to grow sales and profits and customer engagement. 

1. Post a Status Update

Post a status update mentioning your facebook page.  Don’t be afraid to outright ask people to join your Facebook page.  Ask and you shall receive.  Give them a great reason why they should join, tell them news, or find a creative way to mention and link to your page.

2. Get fans to upload and tag photos

If you host (or attend) an event with several of your fans take a bunch of pictures, post them to your page, and then ask your friends to tag themselves in the pictures.  If you can get your fans to upload pictures to your page, or tag themselves in pictures you uploaded, this will post to their walls as well and will lead to additional traffic for you.

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3. Offer an incentive for people to sign up

You can use specific tools to create a dynamic facebook landing page with a “reveal tab” that contains content that is visible only to fans of your page.  The more valuable your incentive is, the more people will be compelled to click the “Like” button to access it.  Examples of exclusive content could be: An exclusive Video, an exclusive whitepaper/.pdf, exclusive pictures, a discount voucher.

4. Contact admins of groups related to your page

Groups are more powerful than pages in terms of their messaging ability. Pages send updates, but groups send messages directly to a users facebook inbox, triggering an email alert.  If you contact the admin of a Facebook group with some valuable content that adds value to their readers then this can help them nurture their community and help you build yours.

5. Get people to join your page via SMS

Send a text message to 32665 (FBOOK) with the words “fan yourusername” OR “like yourusername” (without the quotes).  This feature is ideal when you’re in front of a live audience.

6. Install a page Badge

Facebook Badges are a simple, yet effective way to link to your facebook profile.  Unlike widgets, badges are simply images, and will load much faster.

7. Install a facebook “Like Box” into your site

Installing a “Like Box” is an excellent way to allow visitors to your site become fans without even leaving your page.  The like box builder tool makes it easy to customize the size of your like box, the number of connections to display, and even the colour scheme.

8. Use status tagging

Status tagging is a cool and fairly new feature of Facebook.  This feature allows you to tag any page or person by entering the @ sign and then typing the name of the page or person you want to tag.

9. Suggest your page to friends

Use the “suggest to friends” feature of your page. Use this feature sparingly. Personally, I try to only invite people go my page once because I know it annoys me when multiple people invite me.  If you have many friends you might want to consider using the “invite all” Google chrome extension, rather than clicking hundreds or thousands of times.

10. Install a Like Button into your site

Installing a like button allows visitors to like your page, and when they do this posts the their activity stream.  This can send more traffic to your site and if you have a Facebook “Like Box” and other content promotion your fan page, since this will help you convert your visitors into fans.

11. Connect your page to Twitter

Connecting your page to Twitter is an excellent way to convert your twitter followers into facebook fans.  Using this strategy will cause all of your posts to be sent to twitter, with a link back to the Facebook version of the post.  www.facebook.com/twitter

12. Link to Your Page as a Place of Employment

You can have a link on your Facebook (personal) profile to your Facebook business page by using it under the employment section.  Once you do this your Facebook Page will appear under your name on your Profile.

13. Install commenting on your landing page

This will allow people to comment on your page, even if they are not a fan.  Any comments made can broadcast to news feeds and lead to more traffic to your page.  Setting up Facebook commenting requires registering a Facebook application, so act on this tip with caution unless you are comfortable with code.

14. Leverage Traditional Media

Since Facebook is so widespread you can use any forms of traditional media and achieve results.  Newspapers, Media Buys, Radio, and TV all work, but are often very costly.  To maximize your promotion offer a free gift to those who join you page.

15. Newsletter Promotion

If you do email (newsletter) marketing send a message to your subscribers letting them know about your fan page and consider including a link to your fan page in every email.

16. Email Signature

Every email you send is an opportunity to link to your facebook page.  Check out the email signature tool wisestamp for a creative way to link to your social profiles.

17. Get business cards promoting your Facebook page

Business cards are cheap. Throw a link on your card and people will almost certainly check it out.  If you’re pressed for space in your design all page urls can be shortened from "facebook.com" to "fb.me", or "fb.com".  

18. Fiverr

Fiverr is an online marketplace where services are sold for five bucks.  Check out their “Social Marketing” and “Advertising” section and here you will find some people who are willing to suggest your page to 5,000 of their friends for just $5.  You will need to make the person who will suggest your page to their friends an admin in order for them to do this for you, but if you are willing to place your trust in someone to do this and they come through for you this will allow you to pick up dozens if not hundreds of new fans.

19. Create a Professional Timeline Cover

The new Timeline layout for brand pages offers you a unique opportunity to customize your page.  A beautiful cover page increases the attractiveness of your page and reinforces the brand attributes of your business.

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20. Run a “fans only” contest

An excellent way to run a fans only contest is using wildfireapp.  There are rules and regulations around running a contest on Facebook so be sure to check out the Facebook Statement of Rights and Responsibilities (“Statement”) before you run one.

21. Link to your page from your profile

Edit your Facebook profile information to include promotion for your Fan Page.  At the bottom of the info section of your profile you can include links to any websites you are affiliated with.  The more links you can build to your Page, the more traffic you will be able to send to your Facebook Fan Page. I am constantly seeking new opportunities to build links that will send traffic to my Fan Page.

22. Blog Commenting

Comment on blogs and in the website section use a link to your fan page.

23. Link to your Facebook page from your LinkedIn profile

Linkedin gives every user three slots for links to whatever you’d like right on your profile.  You can make the anchor text of these links whatever you like, so I recommend using a call to action statement such as: "Join my Facebook page".

24. Upload video to facebook

Facebook video is very underrated, and exceptionally powerful.  When you embed a Facebook video on another website this video includes a watermark link in the top left corner to the fan page it came from.

25. Watermark your videos with a link to your website

Using a video editing program include a link to your website.  I use camtasia to add my watermarks, and to record any screencast I create, and this program comes with a free 30 day trial.

26. Create a memorable URL

If you go to facebook.com/username you will be able to create a custom URL for your page.  Remember that this cannot be changed once it is set, so choose wisely.

27. Deliver an exceptional experience

Although Facebook pages are no longer officially considered “fan pages” if you work to create fans of your brand many of them will certainly seek out and join your facebook page.  Strive to deliver an awesome experience for those who interact with your brand. Go above and beyond when engaging with your community and they will spread the word.  A famous article called 1,000 true fans maintains that they are all you need to create a thriving business. Don’t try just to get people to click “Like” but instead seek to create raving true fan who will spread your word far and wide.

28. Link it up

Hyperlinks are what weave the web together so use them often and every time you do you are opening up another gateway into your fan page.

29. Flip the funnel

Drive your fans back to your website for new blog posts.  Make sure that your blog has social sharing and many of your fans will “like” your blog posts and tweet it out to their followers on twitter as well.

30. Track your growth with Facebook insights

Facebook insights shows you how many fans you have over time, and some fairly detailed demographic information as well.  Using this knowledge you can analyze what activities drive the most growth, and then duplicate your success.

31. Analyze your demographics with insights

Facebook demographics are a powerful feature of insights that allows you to determine the gender and age of the people in your page.  Once you know this information you can focus your content to appeal to the age group and gender of your fans.

32. Talk and Blog about your page

Word of mouth does not start itself. Get the conversation going by mentioning your facebook page in blog posts and in every day conversation.

33. Learn more about Facebook

The more you know about facebook the more you can use this knowledge to drive the gowth your community.  There is lots of free information online.  Youtube videos are a great way to pickup new tricks and tips.

34. Drive more traffic to your website

Use these tips to get more free traffic to your website. Make sure that your “Like Box” is featured prominently, and plenty of this traffic will “Like” your page.

35. Produce Epic Content

If your blog content is epic this will drive the growth of your page in a serious way.  Epic content has the best chance of going viral and if a blog post goes viral this also causes it to move up in the rankings in Google, leading to even more traffic, a percentage of which will convert to fans.

36. Install a like button into your posts

Installing a like button into your posts will help drive extra traffic to your posts and it will also show that facebook is an integral part of your brand.  The more you can integrate Facebook with your site the more likely people will be to join your Facebook page.

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37. Make a Facebook like sign

Create a cool image that will help promote your Facebook page.  Make sure you include your Facebook page name.

38. Buy Them

We don’t normally recommend this option, however we recently came across a service called FanJive that seems to provide higher quality fans than the rest of the competition.  The first 1,000 fans are usually the hardest to get so a service like this might help you get the critical mass needed to get more genuine organic fans.

39. Run a targeted ad campaign

Facebook advertising is exceptionally powerful due to the ability it offers to hyper target your market.  Facebook ads can be targeted based on age, location, and interests.

40. Turn your customers into fans

If someone likes you enough to buy your product then there is a good chance that they will like you on Facebook as well.  Set up your “thank you” page with a Facebook “Like Box” and you’ll be good to go!

41. Advertise your page

The more you advertise your page the more fans you will be able to achieve.  Facebook advertising s a smart way to promote since you can target specific demographic and interest groups.  You will need a sales funnel in place in order to justify an advertising budget and I recommend setting this up prior to advertising on Facebook.

42. Use experts to manage your page

Use someone that understands Facebook and, more importantly, understands marketing.  They will manage your Facebook page to maximize engagement by scheduling your posts ahead of time to go out when they will get the most attention.  Facebook posts get the most engagement early in the morning and a few hours before bed.

43. Get an attractive profile picture

A picture says a thousand words, so to really optimize your business page you should use the largest profile picture possible.  Currently the maximum profile picture size is 200 x 600 pixels.

44. Do a “fan of the month” promotion

By highlighting one of your best fans every month you indirectly encourage fans to engage more, so that they can win the coveted fan of the month title the next month.  Offer a monthly prize, such as a cool free product or service related to your brand, and the competition for this title will only increase.

45. Message your friends and ask them to join

This tried and tested method takes more ground work, but this method will allow you to build relationships and target the friends that you think are the most relevant to your page.

46. Include a link to your fan page in your forum signature

If you are active in any forums you will have the option to attach a “signature” to every post that you write.  Throw a link in your signature to your Facebook page, and it will be clicked.  Do your best to add value and answer questions with your posts, and people will be more inclined to click your link and join your page.  A link with a call to action text is more likely to get clicked than a link alone with just the address.

47. Create a redirect URL

Creating a redirect to your Facebook fan page is one way to “presell” the people who click it on joining your page.  For example, if your link is: www.yourdomain.com/joinmyfacebookpage anyone who clicks it will probably join your page.  Here is an article on how to redirect a webpage.

48. Give away fan page swag

Websites like Zazzle make it easy for people to customize swag, such as the nifty “you like this” t-shirt below.  If you gave away shirts (or mugs, or stickers) with your Facebook url included you could easily amass an army of walking billboards for your Facebook page.

49. Find more facebook friends

The more friends you have, the better your chances will be that some of these friends will join your fan page.  Facebook has a “Find Your Friends Tool” that allows you to import your contact list from a variety of email clients, or an email list.  This tool also displays “People you may know” which I have found is very good at suggesting people that have many mutual friends as me.

50. Share this article with your facebook friends

If you share this post with your facebook friends and it will become obvious to them that getting more fans important to you, and if you have included a link to your facebook page in your info box or the “Website” section of your website there is a good chance that they will click it.

Feedback

What strategies have you used to get people to like your page? Let us know in the comments below!

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Chris Pattas

Chris Pattas lives in beautiful Melbourne, Australia. He is happily married with two children. Chris is a successful business leader who enjoys helping organisations reach their full potential. Whether it is driving greater profit or sales, growing market share in competitive industries, inspiring executives to achieve great things, negotiating compelling business deals or working as a board member implementing exciting change programs, he knows how to get the most out of any organisation. Chris has worked in various product and service industries including: advertising, software, IT&T, travel & tourism, utilities and telecommunications. His interests and expertise include: leadership & strategy, sales & marketing, online & social media, science & technology, travel & tourism, photography and music.