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November 16, 2010

How to Maximize and Grow Your Facebook Fan Page

Author: expadv | Filed Under Social Media

Hey all! I wanted to touch on some ideas related to managing and growing a Facebook Fan Page. If you haven’t created your Facebook Fan Page you can do so here. Maintaining a Fan Page is great idea for any business, club, organization, cause, personality, or anyone that is looking to gain fans for a group. The nice thing about a Fan Page is it grows over time and can be “worked” to make sure it’s a fun and exciting place people want to check out frequently and put in their opinions and ideas. The point of build a Fan base is so you have people you can interact with that can become passionate fans and representatives and tell everyone they know! Here are some tips to make sure you are leveraging Facebook Fan Pages to the utmost:

1. Welcome Screen – Having a customized Welcome tab is a great idea to dress up your Facebook Fan Page to new visitors. It’s nice to have because you can add functionality to it as well as instruct your potential new fans to “Like” your page. There is a nice free tool for adding a Welcome screen to your fan page here.

2. Left Side Graphic – Another area that you can customize is your left side graphic of the Fan Page. Most companies will make a nice tall graphic that is customized to advertise their current promotion or to be a seasonal graphic of some kind. You can play around with your left side graphic and keep it timely which tends to work best.

3. Discussions Area – The Discussions area of your fan page should really be a primary focus of building out your Fan Page with more content and topics. The really nice thing is the Discussions area tends to rank well in Google, so any topics you put up there will get into the the search results and can lead to traffic to those discussions and eventual new fans or even business. Make sure to encourage your fans to participate in your discussions by messaging them to do so and also running contests and promotions, like “whoever makes the best response wins a gift card.”

4. Email Messaging Your Fans – Messaging your Facebook Fans is a great way to keep them engaged with your current content and promotions. In order to email message all of your fans at once you have to go into your Fan Page under: Edit Page (under left graphic) > Marketing > Send Update. You can then write your subject and content and email all your fans. Make sure not to email fans too much and send them good info or they leave your fan page.

5. Fan Page Advertising – Probably the best way to build your Facebook Fans is to advertise on Facebook itself for more fans. The nice thing is you can target who will see your ads by people’s Like and Interests. So for example if you are advertising your Flower Shop’s fan page you may want to run ads to people in your store’s zip code that are Liked to Flowers or 1800flowers, so you know the people seeing your ad are interested in what you offer. There are many things you can target so you have to try different Likes and Interests and see which creates more fans for you at the least cost. I have found that fan page advertising is a tremendous way to build your targeted fans. Facebook fan page ads are on a cost-per-click or cost-per-thousands impressions (CPM). You have to see which “backs-out” to the lowest average cost-per-click (CPC) and then run with that.

6. Posting Status Updates – Once you have some fans you can post your status updates which will keep your fans informed about all the current happenings you want to share with them. You can post links, webpage urls, photos, videos, and any other media that you want to share with your fans. The nice thing is when your fans Like, Comment, or Share your status updates their friends see that and it can go viral if it’s compelling enough. Don’t hammer your fans with too many status updates or they will leave your fan page. Posting links in your status updates can put it into the News area of people’s status updates which can get more views and action. I recommend no more than 2-5 status updates per day, if that.

7. Contests and Promotions – the best part about running a Facebook Fan Page is that you can run fun and exciting contests and promotions to your fans and get them moving into action. Many companies will do free giveaways, special coupon promotions, and survey contests to engage with their fans and increase overall interaction and sharing. Companies like Rita’s Italian Ice have been able to leverage free promotions to build their fans into the hundreds of thousands. Every company or group will be different but everyone should be running contests and promotions to try to motivate their fans into action and create excitement.

8. Mass Friend Invites – If you know me, you know I love mass friend invites. It’s the best way to auto-select and blast all your Facebook friends about your fan page. The cool thing is all your new fans and do the same thing and it can really increase exposure if you are able to get your fans to invite all of their friends to your fan page. There is a little piece of code that should be pasted into the main browser window after you have selected to invite your friends, then you just write a little message and blast way! Here is a great article that explains how the process works.

9. Interacting with Fans – whether you mange 10 fans or 100,000 you should be seeking to interact with them as much as possible. Make sure whoever is managing your Fan Page is really friendly and proactive. Also because they are representing your company or organization they should be really competent at writing and responding. Make sure to be as friendly and outgoing as possible because that approach is always well-received. Every opportunity to interact with a fan should be maximized and taken seriously, as they could become a vocal representative for your Fan Page.

These are some suggestion for building out and improving your Facebook Fan Page. It takes a lot of work to do it properly but will pay big dividends in the end. Make sure whoever is managing your Fan Page is a competent, pro-active, passionate, and super friendly person that takes it very seriously and does a great job. Check out what your competitors are doing with their Fan Pages and then emulate and improve upon that. I hope you enjoyed this little article…feel free to leave me your comments and suggestions…and of course share it! thx!