Like ButtonFor every big success story I hear about marketing on Facebook, I also hear several stories of, ‘Oh, I tried that, but it didn’t go anywhere so I gave up.”

So does marketing on Facebook work? Without a doubt it does – Facebook is the most visited website in the world, and getting seen can mean a significant boost to your list building and your sales.

But the key is to have a game plan for how you’re going to build, brand and market yourself on Facebook. With that in mind, I’ve put together this list of tips I’ve garnered together to get you moving in the right direction.

1. Create a page. Sounds simple, right? Well actually it is –however the problem is marketers get confused and they start a profile instead of a page. If you want to market your business on Facebook, a profile simply won’t cut it. Pages are meant for businesses and they are much more effective at getting your message out there. I’ve just built a page for our local food-bank and it seems to be doing really well at the moment with views etc.

So what can you do if you goofed and you already made a profile for your business? Well don’t panic because there is a fix: By using Facebook’s migrate tool, you can switch from a profile to a page and best of all, you get to KEEP all of your followers.

2. Promote your fan page. Place your fan page URL in your email signature. Now every time you send an email, it’s another chance for recipients to find your Facebook fan page and a chance to build a list. Next, blog about your fan page. Don’t just ask your blog readers to like your page – instead, give them at least one compelling reason why they should (bribes work well), but it could be any reason, so long as it resonates with your readers.

3. Add a “Like” box to your blog or websites. Get the plugin code for the Facebook Like box, setting the options to include the face pile. Place this code on your website’s or blog’s sidebar. (What’s a “face pile I hear you ask?” It’s that block of profile pictures of users who have connected with your page.) Update, I’ve just checked this link, and I notice this plugin is being replaced next month so that’s something to watch out for.

4. Cross page promote your page. By posting on other fan pages using your page’s user name, you get a visible link to your page with each comment.

5. Consider getting some Facebook ads. It’s easy, you can spend as little as you like, and you can target your campaigns to only those people who are likely to be interested in what you have to offer. Facebook is one of the cheapest forms of advertising at the time of writing.

6. Promote your page on Twitter. Place your fan page URL on your Twitter profile background. (Note: Only those using the web based version of Twitter will see your background, but this is still plenty of eyeballs.) Tweet about your page. Ask your Twitter followers to like your fan page. Again, offering them a good reason why they should like it will greatly increase your response rate.

7. Why should people become fans? We’ve touched on this, but it’s important: Give people a great reason to become your fan. Maybe it’s to get discounts or updates. Maybe it’s a free video, ebook, etc. Just make sure it’s something that motivates immediate and swift action.

8. Add your page URL to YouTube. Do you create videos to promote your business? Then by all means add your fanpage URL link to your videos, either at the end of the video or at the beginning of the video description.

9. Post frequently. If you forget about your fanpage, your fans will forget about you. Post once or twice a day with good info, updates and questions. Don’t make it all about you and your products. Instead, post about events, news, your industry and so forth. And whenever you can, inject a little humor into the mix. everyone likes humor.

10. Ask your fans to like your content so it gets shared on their walls. You can’t ask every time, but now and then is fine. When they like your post, more people will see it, which can lead to more fans – which is always a good thing.

11. Talking of questions: Get your fans involved with your page by starting discussions about your products and services or industry news. What’s the best way to start a discussion? Simply ask a provocative question your fans can’t ignore. If you get stuck on what to ask, use the fill in the blank kind of question, such as, “If you could have any job in the world, it would be ____.”

12. Don’t become a troll victim. Now you’re starting discussions, remember to remain professional at ALL TIMES, with no exceptions. If you are perceived as quarreling with a fan, it won’t matter if you’re right – it will only matter you lost your cool and you look like a childish idiot. If things look as though they may get nasty, offer the fan a private way to contact you (phone or email, for example.)

13. Forget the “I” and focus on the “we.” Much like writing a sales letter, making Facebook posts should be all about “we,” not I. For example, “We reached 500 likes today, thank you everyone!”

14. Remember to use plenty of photos and even videos. Written words are great, but videos are better and photos tend to get shared. So incorporate a variety of mediums into your Facebook communications, you’ll find it will reap a host of rewards.

15. Be thankful. This one takes a little time, but it’s well worth it. Thank each new person who likes your Facebook page (you can find them by using the “New Likes” box.) This will really make you stand apart from the crowd. After all, how many people have ever personally thanked them for a Like? You might very well be the first.

16. Relax. Facebook isn’t the place for a suit and tie kind of personality. Instead, be fun, be casual, be funny and make your fan page an entertaining, inviting place to be where folks will want to hang out.

17. Brand your page. That large image on your timeline needs to really ROCK. It should effectively communication the message you want to send to your fans, so spend time getting it just right. (And size it as close to 850 x 315 pixels as possible for optimal viewing.)

18. Keep track. Use Facebook insights to discover when people are most engaged with your content. This way you know when to post to get the maximum effect.

19. Encourage people to return. Facebook check-in deals allow you to offer special incentives when people check in with your page.

20. Use Sponsored Stories. Let’s say one of your fans writes a great post about you or your business. You can pay to highlight this so there’s a better chance it’ll be seen.

21. Keep it short and sweet. Want to capture the most eyeballs? Then keep your posts to 80 characters or less. Longer posts tend to be skimmed over and shorter ones tend to get read.

22. Pin your posts. No, we’re not talking about Pinterest here. Rather, Facebook allows you to “pin” a post to the top of your timeline for as long as a week. Use this to showcase something important, such as an upcoming event or a dynamite testimonial from a celeb in your niche

23. Get started. None of this will help if you don’t get started.

And lets have a peep when you’re up and running with your page, I’ll be happy to give it a like for you…

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