We’ve reached the halfway mark, but this is no time to rest. In the final post for this series we’ll really go deep as we look at some of the ways to REALLY customize your Page.
But before we go there, we need to promote your Page, by looking at the how and why of Page promotion.
Promoting your Page is one of the most important parts of maintaining a healthy and active Page- which will help to create the community you desire. You have to get your Page to the people you want to connect with.
Ready? Set. Go.
Promoting Your Page
There are basically three ways to do this.
- Suggest your Page to your friends. (Word of Mouth- on steroids.)
- Add a Fan Box or Page Badge to your website or other websites. (Blatant self-promotion, which is a good thing.)
- Pay for promotion with Facebook Ads. (Paying for blatant self-promotion, which is still a good thing.)
Suggest to Friends
Word of Mouth is the best strategy to getting noticed. Think of Facebook as Word of Mouth on steroids. You have the ability to suggest your friends on Facebook become fans of your Page. They have this ability too, and so do their friends, and their friends, et cetera.
There are over 400 million users on Facebook. Get it? Got it. Good.
Fan Boxes & Page Badges
Yes, there is a difference here. Both can be accessed at the same place though- kudos to Facebook for this. Go to facebook.com/facebook-widgets and select one of the options under the “Website or Business” column.
Fan Boxes “Allow users to become your fan and view your Facebook Page stream.” They are ideal for your website, and are larger than Page Badges. Basic customization is done for you, but the real secret is that once the code for your Fan Box is generated, you can tweak it to your heart’s desire before placing it wherever you like.
Smaller in size than the Fan Box, the Page Badge is great if you’re limited on space. It’s also a great option because it let’s you “Share your Facebook Page information on other websites.” Again, basic customization is done here, and more can be done if you so desire.
Promoting your Page with Ads
If you’d like to, you have the option to advertise of Facebook. There is so much here that this post simply can’t cover it. For the best information about advertising on Facebook go to the Facebook Advertising homepage at facebook.com/advertising.
Sending Updates to Fans
This is one of the features of Facebook Pages that really sets it apart. You can send an update to ALL of your fans at once. Think of it as a free mass-emailing system just for your Page. To do this, let’s head over to the Edit Page screen. Click “Send an Update to Fans”, type it out, and send. You can also record and attach a video, post a link, and add music or YouTube to your update. (If you aren’t seeing this option, it’s because you haven’t Published your Page. Once you Publish- you’ll be good to go.)
Facebook usernames became available in June of 2009 and added one more level of personalization to the overall user interface. Instead of telling someone that your oranization is on Facebook at “facebook.com/pages/yourorg” you can now simply say “facebook.com/yourorg”.
After your Page has 25 fans you’ll want to set the username by logging-in to Facebook, and then going to http://facebook.com/username/. Facebook limits the use of usernames to Pages that have at least 25 fans to reduce “username abuse” or “reserving”. For more FAQ’s about usernames check out Facebook’s help section here.
I want to point out that you will need to create a username for your Profile (yellow box) before you can set a username for any Page that you Administer.
One thing to note is that the only characters allowed by Facebook for usernames are numbers (0-9), letters (A-Z), and “.” (dot or period). For example: If I wanted to set the username for the My Example Org Page, I could use “facebook.com/MyExample.org” rather than “facebook.com/MyExampleOrg”.
Be creative but simple here, and remember that THIS IS PERMANENT. Once you’ve selected your username, you cannot change it. The actual process for setting usernames is the same for Profiles and Pages, and pretty straightforward. If you hit a snag, check out the Facebook help section or leave a comment on this post and I’ll do all I can to help.
As you go through the different ways to promote your Page, remember that the most important thing you can do is to interact. It may seem like I’m saying this a lot in this series- well I am! Interaction is so vital to the success of the community you’re building with your Page. I cannot emphasize it enough- interaction, interaction, interaction!
We’re 75% of the way through this series of posts. In the next installment we’re going to really dig in to your Page. We’ll go over some ways to “customeer” your Page to make it stand out from the millions of other Pages out there, as well as look at the built-in feedback your Page can provide you as you interact and build community.