Facebook Marketplace on Ipad 2018 How?
Fundraising is a way for you to solicit donations. It’s a very flexible system that allows you to fundraise both on behalf of an established charity or on behalf of yourself or another person (for example, a school trip, a memorial fund after someone’s death, and so on). The marketplace is Facebook’s central location for browsing, buying, and selling used items.
It offers tools for searching and filtering in on your searches, as well as easy ways to keep track of items that you’ve listed for sale. This blog explains the facebook marketplace on iPad in detail.
To check out Marketplace, click on the Marketplace link in the left-side menu on your Homepage (it has a little storefront icon). This brings you to Marketplace.
Marketplace has its own left-hand menu and searches functionality across the top of the page. The bulk of the page is taken up with the listings. Each listing has a photo, title, and info about how recently and where it was posted.
The left-hand menu has links to different sections: Browse (where you start), Buying, Selling, and Saved Items. You can also click on any of the categories listed on the left side of the page to check out that specific category of item. Often, when you click on a category, you’ll be able to see further subcategories.
For example, when you click on the Family Category, you find that you can, in fact, drill down on any of the following smaller categories: Toys & Games, Baby & Kids, Pet Supplies, and Health & Beauty. If there’s something, in particular, you’re looking for, use the search box at the top of the page to search for it by name or keyword.
You can also change the city you are searching in (Facebook will autocomplete a city as you type in the name of your desired location). Use the drop-down menu to change the radius of your search.
You can search as locally as within two miles of your city or town, or as far as 100 miles away. By default, Facebook sets the radius at forty miles. You can also use the drop-down menus to filter by category and price (you can set a range).
There is also a button you can press to just see items that have been listed for free. If you find that you have added so many restrictions that you no longer see any results, click the blue Reset link to undo all the filters you have set. As you are browsing, you may notice some tags on top of various images.
Some may note that an item is popular, that it is sold pending pick-up, or that it is free. Whenever you see an item that interests you, click on it to open a larger image of it and view more.
When you view an item’s listing, you can click through the various photos of the item (if there are multiple photos of it).
To the right of the photos, you can view a more detailed description of the item, as well as a map indicating the general area it’s being sold from, and how many people have viewed the item. You can also view the seller’s name and click through to view their public profile.
This is one of those places where your sense of whether a profile is really coming into play. You don’t want to start messaging back and forth with a fake or scammy account, so paying attention to when they joined and whether their profile seems fishy is important.
Facebook suggests you never include your email, phone number, or financial information in the first message to a seller, and that is sound advice. You can take several actions from the item’s listing. You can mark that you are interested in the item, or save the item so you can go back to it later.
You can also click to share the item with an interested friend. Most prominently, if you’re ready to go beyond just looking at an item, click the big blue Message Seller button to start a thread with the seller. Clicking the Message Seller button opens a message window with a blank text box.
You can write any questions you have about the item here, or you can choose to use one of the pre-filled text questions listed below. These commonly used phrases, like “I’m interested in this item,” can be added to the body of your message with a simple click.
After you finish your message, click the Send Message button to send it. This opens a chat window between you and the sender. If you don’t hear back right away or you leave your computer, you can always find this item and a record of the conversation in the Buying section of Marketplace (click Buying in the left-hand menu of Marketplace).
Often the process of buying something can require a bit of a back-and-forth between you and the seller: you need to agree on a price and method of payment, coordinate a time and location for picking it up or getting it delivered, and then actually go and get the item.
The seller might also be managing many incoming messages or people who are interested in the item as well, so try to have patience with each other.
If you are looking for something specific, such as a brand of clothing. When you search for something, look at the top of the results for a grey “Follow” button. Click this button to receive notifications any time something that fits your search terms is posted to Marketplace.
Selling your stuff on Marketplace
If you’re trying to create a listing for something you want to sell, you can easily do so by going to Marketplace and following these steps:
1. Click the blue Sell Something button in the upper-right corner of the page. This opens the Sell Something box
2. Enter the item’s info into the appropriate space.
What are you selling? This will be the title of your item in Marketplace so best to make it short and descriptive: IKEA Table and Chairs, Bundle of 3T clothing, Vintage iPad — whatever makes sense for the item your selling.
Add price: Decide how much you think your item is worth and add a price. If you aren’t sure what price to choose, try searching for similar items already in Marketplace and see what other people are asking for it.
Change location: By default, location gets set to your current location. If you want to have this listed in a different location, click the X next to the current location to delete it.
Type in your preferred location in the now-empty Add Location field. Depending on where you live, you can often type in a specific neighborhood, not just the main city where you are selling something.
Select a category: Click the Select a Category field to open a menu of categories for you to choose from.
Describe your item (optional): You don’t have to fill any additional description out, but adding details about the item you’re selling can be helpful. You can describe the condition it’s in, including its measurements, and make any notes about use or care.
3. Add photos of your item by clicking the gray Add Photo box at the bottom of the Sell Something box.
This opens an interface for selecting photos from your computer’s hard drive. After you add your photos, you can edit them by hovering your mouse over the thumbnail of the photo you want to edit and clicking the paintbrush icon in the lower-right corner of that thumbnail. Click the X icon to remove that photo entirely.
4. When you’re done, click Post. Your listing immediately goes into Marketplace, where everyone can see it and respond.
You can keep track of your listings by going to the Selling section of Marketplace (click Selling in the left-hand menu). Here, you can see all the items you have listed for sale.
When you sell something, click the blue Mark as Sold button to take it off the Marketplace. Click the Manage button to open a menu where you can either delete the listing entirely or edit it.
All posts to Marketplace are public, which means everyone on Facebook can see them. Don’t post any personally identifying information, such as your address, phone number, or credit card number.
Using Marketplace on your phone
Marketplace is easy to browse and use on your phone. To get to it (assuming you are using the Facebook app on an iPhone or Android), tap on the Marketplace icon at the bottom of the Home page (it looks like a little storefront) to start browsing through Marketplace. Use your finger to scroll up and down and browse. Tap on any listings you find interesting to learn more.
You can quickly tap the blue “I’m Interested” or “Make Offer” button to let the seller know you’re interested without having to compose a more in-depth message. You may also see other buttons like “Check out on Website” or “Add to Cart” from established businesses (as opposed to another individual).
Creating a new listing on your phone is very convenient because you can easily take a picture of the item you are selling without having to search your hard drive or transfer photos from your phone to your computer:
1. Tap on the Publisher in Marketplace that says, “What are you listing?” This opens a menu of categories for your listing.
2. Choose from Item for Sale, Vehicles for Sale, Housing for Rent/Sale, Jobs. All categories except Jobs opens an interface for navigating your phone’s camera roll.
3. Tap on a photo to select it or tap the camera icon in the upper-left corner to open your phone’s camera.
4. Point and shoot!
5. When you’ve taken a photo you’re happy with and edited it to your heart’s content, click Use in the upper-right corner.
This returns you to your phone’s camera roll. You can take more pictures by returning to the camera or choose existing photos from your phone’s camera roll.
6. After you select the photos you want, click Next in the upper-right corner. This opens the New Item interface.
7. Enter your item’s info (title, price, category, location, and so on) into the fields of the New Item interface.
There are some additional options here that are not on your computer. You can choose to offer to ship for the item, or if you are selling one item in multiple colors or styles, you can add that information by clicking the blue Add More Options link.
8. Decide whether you want to share this item on your profile in addition to on Marketplace, and in any Buy/Sell groups you may be a member of. By default, your items only get listed in Marketplace. Tap on the other options to select them as well.
BUYING AND SELLING SAFELY
While Facebook tries to take some of the guesswork out of buying and selling your used items online, the fact remains that you will be interacting with someone you don’t know. Here are a few basic safety tips to keep in mind:
Watch out for scammers: If something sounds too good to be true, it probably is. Don’t let people upend your common sense. There is no reason someone selling something or buying something from you will ever need your passwords, credit card numbers, or anything like that.
You should never transfer money to someone until you have the item in your hands and have checked to make sure it is as advertised.
Use cash or person-to-person payment methods: You can use Facebook to make payments (if both people are using debit cards), or other apps where the money immediately gets moved from one account to another. Checks can be faked or bounced. Cash is probably your best bet.
Try to meet in neutral locations: If possible when arranging to sell someone something, try to meet in a neutral, public location. This makes both people feel safer about, you know, meeting someone from the internet. Let someone know where you’ll be and who it is you are going to meet.
Give out your address judiciously: Of course, a neutral location might not be possible, or worthwhile to you, especially if you’re selling something small. So don’t give out your full address to someone until they’ve committed to coming to pick up your item. And if something about them sets off your Spidey sense, don’t force yourself to meet them!
9. Tap Post.
Your listing is added to Marketplace. Don’t let the number of steps here fool you. I once listened to someone describe the process of listing multiple items to Facebook as something that was easily accomplished with a tasty beverage in one hand and their phone in the other.
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Belonging to Buy/Sell Groups
In addition to Marketplace, many people use Buy/Sell Groups to buy and sell used items. You can use both (and, in fact, Facebook makes it easy to post Marketplace listings to Buy/Sell groups you belong to and vice versa). Usually, people tend to use Buy/Sell groups for the following reasons:
Groups require membership: Because members of a group must actively join that group, this acts as a bit of a filter on both the number of people who will see your listing and the type of buyer/seller you are interacting with.
Not to say that the Buy and Sell safety tips don’t apply, it just means that you are sharing listings with a particularly interested group of people.
Groups can get quite specific: I live in a city divided by neighborhoods. Even though, as the crow flies, it isn’t far to pick up an item in Downtown, I’d rather pick up something in my own ten-block radius.
Buy/Sell groups often limit themselves to certain neighborhoods, so I can accomplish just that. They also can be for very specific categories of items, such as outdoor gear, children’s gear, and housing. This can make your browsing more targeted.
Groups often have a trade element: In addition to selling more locally and in a more community-based way, many Buy/Sell groups offer an option to trade items. If you are short on cash or hoping to get rid of a few of your own possessions, the barter system might be what you’re looking for.
Beyond this, keep an eye out for local “Buy Nothing” groups, built around the minimalist notion that we don’t need to buy anything new, ever.
In those groups, members can create requests for items and other members, if they are able, fulfill those requests The mechanics of using Buy/Sell groups are very similar to any other group—you use the Publisher, comment on posts you’re interested in, and message other people in the group.
If you need a refresher on how groups work, You can look for Buy and Sell groups near you by clicking the Buy and Sell Groups link in the left-side menu. This brings you to a Buy and Sell Groups home page, which displays a few of the local groups you might be interested in. Click the Join Group button next to any of the groups that look appealing to you.
Browsing and buying in a Buy/Sell group
Buy/Sell group looks pretty much like most other groups. The main differences are that the Publisher defaults to Sell Something instead of prompting you to start a discussion.
Under the Publisher is a preview of items that are currently for sale. Scroll down on the page to view the most recent listings. These listings should look familiar to you—they’re just posts, albeit with titles and fields for prices.
Some posts will have comment threads where people ask questions about the item’s condition, pick up locations or other related topics. In general, people don’t use comment threads to perform the final negotiations for buying and picking up an item.
Instead, when they’re ready to make an offer, most people message the seller directly (and there is a handy Message Seller button in the lower-right corner of the post).
If you are really on the hunt for something, you can try using the search bar in the left menu to search for that item within the group’s posts. You can also click on the Items for Sale link in the left-hand menu to view a condensed list of all the items currently for sale within the group.
Selling items in a Buy/Sell group
If you want to list something for sale in a Buy/Sell group, click in the Publisher. This is the little text box near the top of the group (under the cover photo). When you click in it, the Sell Something box opens. You’ll need to fill out the following fields:
What are you Selling: Your answer to this question becomes the title of your post, so be descriptive.
Price: Let people know how much you are looking for them to pay for the item.
Location: Facebook may automatically fill in your zip code. Delete this info to use a different zip code.
Description: Add any details about your item that may be relevant—condition, measurements, and so on.
Photos: Add any photos of the item you are selling. In general, I’ve found that more than one photo is usually helpful to people.
At the bottom of the Sell Something box, next to the blue Post button, is a menu for deciding whether you want to add your listing to Marketplace in addition to the which-ever group you are about to post to. By default, Facebook assumes you will want to list it in both places.
If you only want to list it in the group, click this menu and deselect Marketplace. If you are a member of more than one Buy/Sell group, you also have the option here to create a listing that gets posted to those groups as well.
When you’ve added all the info you need to your listing, click the blue Post button. You’ll be notified about any comments on the listing, as well as any incoming messages from people who are interested in buying it.
Using Buy/Sell groups on your phone
Much like using Marketplace, using Buy/Sell groups on your phone — particularly for selling items — can be even easier because you can take pictures directly from your phone and include them in your listing.
As someone who has made many a listing in my day, I can attest to the fact that if you are sitting at your computer trying to create a listing, you will inevitably need to make about ten trips back to the garage to check your measurements, take a new photo, and so on. Make your life easier and create the listing from where the item is.
To navigate to the Buy/Sell group you are interested in using for your sale, type its name into the search bar at the top of the app. You can also tap on the More button in the bottom right corner of the app to view a menu of all the shortcuts, features, and destinations you can go to within Facebook.
You can click on your desired Buy/Sell group there, or tap on Buy and Sell Groups to view a preview of all items listed in all the Buy/Sell groups you are a member of.
Fundraising for Causes
For as long as there’s been a Facebook people have found ways to use it to drum up support for a cause. Virtually every feature has been co-opted at one point or another for causes both serious and silly.
People changed their profile pictures to a photo of their school mascot long before Facebook made it easy to put a temporary frame around your profile pic.
Anyone who has participated in a fundraising effort like Team in Training has often reached out to their Facebook network for donations and support. In this way, fundraising on Facebook is nothing new, but the tools now available make it much easier to get support from your friends for any sort of cause.
Donating to a fundraiser
You might learn about fundraisers from an invite or see that one of your friends has created or donated to a fundraiser in your News Feed.
Much like any other post you might see in your News Feed, these posts have like buttons, a space for comments, and a share button. In addition, they also have a Donate button in the lower right corner of the post, which you can click to initiate a donation.
If you want more info about the fundraiser, you click on the fundraiser’s cover photo or title to go to the fundraiser’s page. There you can read the full story about the fundraiser — why your friend has started it, what exactly your money will be accomplished, and so on.
If they are raising money for a nonprofit, it usually makes sense to double-check to see if what your friend says the money is for is the same thing the nonprofit says the money will be for. Clicking Donate on either your friend’s post or the fundraiser’s page opens the donation window.
In the top part of this window, choose the amount you wish to donate and decide who can see that you’ve donated. By default, the fact that donations are made is public, though the amount of any donation is kept between you and the person organizing the fundraiser (and the eventual recipient of the donation).
You can also choose to keep your donation only visible to friends, or only visible to yourself, though again, the organizer and recipient will always be able to see that you have donated.
In the bottom part of the donation window, enter your credit card information or log in to your PayPal account. After you enter all the info needed, click the blue Donate button. Even if you don’t donate to a fundraiser, you can show your support by leaving a post on the fundraiser’s page.
Much like writing a post on a friend’s Timeline, this is something that many people will see, so if you’re wanting to offer support to someone more privately, consider sending a message instead.
Creating your own fundraiser
You can start a fundraiser for any reason at any time. Often current events will inspire people to create fundraisers — whether that’s linking to a big charity like the Red Cross after a natural disaster or donating to a memorial fund after the death of a friend or loved one. Another common time for creating a fundraiser is around one’s birthday.
Since Facebook promotes your birthday to your friends, it’s a time when you know a lot of people will be visiting your Timeline and leaving a message, so there’s a good chance they’ll see your call to give as well.
To get started with your fundraiser, follow these steps:
1. Navigate to the Fundraisers page by clicking Fundraisers in the Explore section of the left-side menu.
This brings you to the Fundraisers page, which includes more information about fundraisers and a list of any fundraisers your friends are currently running.
2. Click the green Raise Money button on the left sidebar. This opens a Raise Money window.
3. Click the blue Get Started button.
The Raise Money window displays three options for fundraising: Friend, Nonprofit, or Yourself. After you have made your selection, you go to the “Basics” Section of creating a fundraiser.
Friend: You will need to enter your friend’s name.
Nonprofit: You will need to search through a list of nonprofits to find the one you want.
Yourself: You name will get automatically entered.
4. Double check that the correct name or organization is listed in the “Who are you raising money for?” section.
5. Set a fundraising target. It’s usually better to set a slightly lower target and then increase it later once it’s been hit.
6. Pick an end date for your fundraiser. Having an end date helps your friends know how long they have to donate and lets you issue reminders like “only three days left!”
7. Click Next. This brings you to the Tell Your Story section of the process.
8. (For Personal/Friend Fundraising Only) Select a category for your fundraiser. Categories include things like medical, education, sports, and so on.
9. Double-check (or create) a title for your fundraiser.
Titles should be brief and descriptive: “John Smith Memorial Fund,” “Help Tyler Pay for College,” “Carolyn’s Fundraiser for RAINN.”
10. Tell your story.
Use as much space as you need to explain why you are creating the fundraiser and what the money will go towards. This is a great place to anticipate any questions your friends may have about the fundraiser.
And Explain why you are fundraising, why you were moved to donate, how your friend will be receiving the money and any other information you think might be relevant.
11. Click Next.
This brings you to the Pick a Cover Photo section.
12. Pick a cover photo.
Facebook recommends default cover photos for your fundraiser depending on the organization or the category. You can use what Facebook recommends or click Edit in the lower-right corner of the cover preview to choose a different option or choose a photo from your computer.
13. Click Create.
This brings you to your Fundraiser’s page. In the case of fundraisers for nonprofits, your fundraiser is automatically published to Facebook (and, keep in mind, all fundraisers are public). In the case of fundraisers for individuals, Facebook reviews such fundraisers to make sure they follow their standards.
If you are creating a personal fundraiser, you must be at least 18 years old. Facebook prompts you here to invite friends and post about your fundraiser. I go over these aspects in the next section, “Promoting and managing your fundraiser.”
Promoting and managing your fundraiser
After you create your fundraiser, it’s important to spread the word about it so people know about it. You can do this in two ways: you can invite people to support your fundraiser, and you can post about your fundraiser on your Timeline.
INVITING FRIENDS TO SUPPORT YOUR FUNDRAISER
To invite friends to view and support your fundraiser, follow these steps:
1. From your fundraiser’s page, click the blue Invite button (underneath the cover photo and title). This opens a window with a list of your friends.
2. Click the blue Invite button next to any friend’s name to invite them to view your fundraiser and (hopefully) donate. You can use the search box at the top of the window to search for specific friends.
3. When you’re done inviting friends, click Done. Friends you’ve invited will receive a notification letting them know about the fundraiser.
Sometimes people wonder about which friends to invite to a fundraiser. On the one hand, if you’re fundraising for a cause you believe in, you should reach out far and wide; on the other hand, sometimes people can feel like it’s rude to ask their friends for money constantly.
I don’t have a perfect answer to this question, other than to recommend that you invite the same people you would reach out to via direct email or phone call for a fundraising effort. I’d leave out any coworkers (especially if you’re their boss!) or people who might feel awkward declining to donate.
CREATING POSTS ABOUT YOUR FUNDRAISER
Facebook will prompt you to create a post about your fundraiser after you’ve created it. If you choose not to do it then, you can create a post for it at any time by clicking the Share button on the fundraiser’s page.
This opens a window for creating a post. It should look familiar because it’s the same as the Publisher you normally use to create your posts, but the information about your fundraiser gets pre-filled.
Add any text you want to include about why you’re creating the fundraiser or why you want people to donate to the text box above the fundraiser’s cover photo, and then click Post. Remember, fundraisers are public, so even if you only share your post with friends, those friends will be able to share the fundraiser with their own friends if they are so inclined.
GETTING THE MONEY WHERE IT NEEDS TO BE
If you are running a fundraiser for an established nonprofit, Facebook automatically links up with their online payment systems to route donations to that organization. However, if you are creating a fundraiser for yourself or for a friend, you will need to make sure that the money goes to the right place.
Facebook uses Stripe, a credit card processing company, to run these transactions. You will need to know the account number and routing info for the account where you would like the money deposited. To set up the payment options, follow these steps:
1. From the Fundraiser, click the More button (below the blue Invite button). This opens a menu of options.
2. Select Setup Payments. This opens a window for linking a checking account to the fundraiser.
3. Enter the routing number for the bank.
4. Enter the checking account number. Click Save.
UNFOLLOWING, EDITING, ENDING AND DELETING A FUNDRAISER
From the fundraiser’s page, click the More [. . .] button (located underneath the cover photo and title) opens a menu with several options
Unfollow: Once you donate to a fundraiser, you may see updates from that fundraiser in your News Feed. If you’d rather not see those updates, you can unfollow the fundraiser by selecting this option.
Edit: Often as fundraisers you’ve created go on, you find that you want to edit some detail of it. For example, you may decide to add an FAQ section to the story or increase the amount of money you want to raise.
Selecting Edit from the More menu opens the Edit fundraiser window where you can change most of the fields you filled out when you were creating the fundraiser. Remember to click the Save button if you make any changes.
End: If you choose to end your fundraiser, for whatever reason, the fundraiser will still exist as a page on Facebook, and you can still post updates there and view any info there.
This may not be significant for all fundraisers, but sometimes, the families of people who might have had a memorial fundraiser, for example, take comfort in being able to go back and view the messages people have left for them after a loved one’s death.
Delete: When you delete a fundraiser, all info about it, including any messages people have left, will be deleted from Facebook. Nonprofits that are associated with it will still receive any donations that have been made so far.
We’ve talked a lot about what to say on Facebook, but how do you actually use Facebook for marketing?
It’s all very well chatting and building relationships, but how do you move that towards a sale, or whatever it is that you want to achieve in your business?
I work from the basic principle that I use social media to ‘find’ people – new prospects and existing customers – but my aim is to move them to my main blog. For you, this ‘most wanted action’ might be different.
It could be:
Request a brochure
Book a free quotation
Get a free 15-minute consultation
Let us send you a sample
Volunteer for 1 hour to work in your charity shop
It could be anything, you know your own business better than I do. But decide what it is you’re moving people towards, and make sure all points lead to that destination. Many people I speak to aren’t even sure of what they want their prospects to do in their own mind.
How can your customers be sure what action to take if you don’t even know what the strategy is? So get that bit right first, then your marketing can move prospects towards it.
Marketing on Facebook is as much about building trust, reputation, and credibility as it is about making straight sales. The long game is that prospects can connect with you, get to know you, get a feel for what you’re about and – when they’re ready to buy – hopefully, then, think of going to nobody else but you. Because you did the groundwork already, all via social media.
Here are some marketing basics for Facebook.
- Make sure that you fill out your Facebook profile info just as I have advised. If you can’t get found, all of your marketing will fall flat before you even get started.
- Don’t get too excited with Likes, they’re just a number. You need a combination of Likes and engagement. You need an active – not a passive – audience on your business page. Likes are just a number, engagement is what counts most.
- Moderate and respond to negative comments and spam. I have already shared with you my zero-tolerance attitude to spammers – I delete the comment and block the writer.
Many people worry about negative feedback, but so long as you haven’t been struck by an internet Troll (in which case, delete and block!) always be positive and constructive … after all, that just shows everybody reading what great customer service you have.
If it’s a personal attack, take it off Facebook, don’t hang out any dirty washing on social media. Remember what I said earlier, play nice at all times.
- Use Facebook Insights to see what your audience responds well to and what they can take or leave. Make informed decisions based on this fabulous and free analytics service.
- Don’t oversell … avoid ‘Buy my stuff!’ syndrome. By all means mention latest offers, discounts, and coupon codes, but present it as a service rather than a sale.
Also, make sure there is always value on your page, nobody will take any notice of what you say if there’s always a sales plug involved.
- Respond to comments, messages, and shares, let your page followers know that there’s a real person looking at what’s going on. This is relationship building – people do business with people they like – so start building relationships!
- Don’t post too often, don’t post too little. I’m often asked what a good posting rate is for Facebook.
I’d say 2-3 times a day, evenly spaced, but other Facebook users will give you different numbers.
The bottom line is, it’s different for all businesses.
Whatever you do, you should post consistently.
Never post 15 items in a row, then disappear for 3 weeks.
Use Insights to see what works for you, the best times to post and how many posts seem to work best.
Consistency is the best answer I can offer you, just be consistent in whatever you do, and do make sure that you post at least once daily.
Keep it short, simple and to the point. It’s a Facebook post, not ‘War and Peace’!
Be personable, friendly and real. Nobody will do business with an automaton.
Use friendly, not formal language (unless your business page is all about ‘How to be a Victorian gentleman’) and always be a real human being.
Although I do use some automation in my use of social media, I always make sure that it is underlined by friendly chat and responses and lots of real, human being input too.
Never auto post from Twitter, it’s horrible!
Both work very well on their own, but Twitter’s stream of consciousness style really doesn’t translate well on Facebook … disconnect it now!
- Never, ever, ever, ever buy Likes. Ever!
You’re building your business on quicksand if you do.
You’re also fooling yourself into thinking that Likes equals sales.
They don’t! You need Likes + engagement, buying Likes does absolutely nothing at all to move your business on in any positive way.
Make the most of your avatar and banner image for promotion, branding, and marketing purposes but always adhere to Facebook’s rules.
Specific Marketing Devices
When I started marketing on Facebook, life was a lot easier.
We used to have wonderful things called ‘default landing pages’ and we could use Facebook’s ‘Fan Gates’ feature to do amazing things.
Unfortunately, those glory days are now gone.
Facebook is channeling everything through Newsfeed and ads nowadays, that’s fine it’s their platform, but it does restrict how we can use it for marketing. However, I want to be really clear about this, just being on Facebook and having a great business page is fabulous marketing on its own, please, never forget that.
So I’m assuming that you’ve done everything that I have recommended so far, as that forms the core of your Facebook marketing strategy. With that said, I’m now going to discuss the key ways to start marketing on Facebook.
Strategies and best practice techniques are changing all the time if you want to keep right up to date this is the type of content I share at https://www.facebook.com/ClixeoUK
This is how Facebook wants you to do your marketing, and they’ll constantly encourage you to try your hand at running adverts. I love Facebook adverts, they get a great response and the targeting is amazing. It’s also really easy to get great results from a low, small business budget.
I’ve reserved a blog to talk about ads, but the general rule of thumb is:
- Boost pages, but don’t use this method in isolation
- Do try Facebook ads
- Use Power Editor, but get some further training before you do!
Facebook contests are a tremendous way of getting lots of activity on your Facebook business page. There’s a big flag for me to raise here about following Facebook’s guidelines at all times, but I do recommend trying out a contest or two and seeing how it works for your business.
There was a time when Facebook was really strict about contests, but things have eased a lot in recent times and the guidelines updated to make things much easier for businesses.
Although you can run your own DIY competitions now, I’d still recommend using a 3rd party app. Pagemodo is great, just take a look at these ready-made contest templates that you can use:
I think that if you’re paying to promote a Facebook contest, it’s certainly worth giving it a really professional look and you get these advantages:
1: The contest design works with mobile devices
2: You know that they’re Facebook compliant
3: You can easily collect email details from participants to add to your mailing list
Many other services can provide you with contest apps too, also check out:
This is an advanced marketing technique, but a very product and cost-effective one. I’m not going to teach it here, as it’s for a more advanced Facebook guide. However, remarketing allows you to target adverts, on Facebook and elsewhere, at people who have visited your blog or website and then moved on.
It’s very clever stuff if you want to find out more, try these two sites, which make it very easy to set-up:
I touched on these earlier in the blog, you can create them for free, but you will be encouraged to pay and boost them to reach a larger audience. Facebook has terms and guidelines, as ever, once you have built up a bit of an audience on your business page, give them a try, they’re quick and easy to set-up.
Once again, we’ve had a sneak peek at these already, they are a great tool to publicize and fill up your events. Facebook offers plenty of guidance on how to set them up and they are definitely something that you should use. Remember, they’re not just for physical events, use them for webinars and other online events or meet-ups too.
Although this is not as easy as it was in the ‘good old Fan Gate days’, you should still aim to build up your subscriber list on Facebook. Transferring your page fans to your email list is extremely effective marketing.
Once you have their email address - and so long as you follow the rules of permission-based email marketing (more on that later!) – you can email subscribers whenever you like with whatever offer you choose.
Now, of course, email marketing has its own rules, techniques, and strategies, but the core concept here is that you own the contact’s details and not Facebook. So make sure that you read that blog as it’s very definitely a Ninja marketing technique on Facebook.
Call to Action Button
If you have access to a call to action button on your Facebook business page, please use it. This is one of the most powerful marketing tools at your disposal at the current time and it’s not to be squandered. All of the savvy marketers jumped on Facebook’s CTA buttons.
To set it up, click on the button and you’ll be given a pop-up window requesting some basic info. You need to enter a suitable web address in the Website area, but ignore the App options unless you have a dedicated app version of your website.
In the Choose a Button drop-down menu, select the most suitable wording for your offer. At the time of writing, Facebook won’t let us customize that wording.
Finally, after you click on the final Create button, your Call-to-Action (CTA) button is ready:
Anytime you want to change or delete that CTA button, just clicks the little arrow to the right of the wording.
Your customers don’t see that arrow by the way, but you do because you are the page admin:
You can check your link (Go to link), edit your CTA or delete it.
Incidentally, this CTA button also displays on mobile devices, making an even more formidable tool to use in your online marketing. It’s not quite as visual as it is on the web-based Facebook page, but it’s there and that, at least, does confirm that Facebook is taking mobile accessibility seriously:
The Best Form of Facebook Marketing?
The best way to market on Facebook is to run a great business page. You can pay for as much advertising as you want, if you don’t do Facebook the ‘right’ way, it will all be wasted.
The best Facebook pages are active, eye-catching, useful, friendly, sociable, fun, informative and fabulous. You can do all of that without spending any money at all, so as a small business, always remember that before parting with your cash.
Now it’s time to step away from the technical and ‘nuts and bolts’ stuff and zoom in on some Facebook SEO principles. One of the key purposes of our Facebook business page is to get it indexed and ranked in the search engines. It’s much easier to do this via Facebook than it is using your own blog or website.
And there’s a very good reason for that!
Let’s delve into the wonderful – and fairly simple world – of Facebook SEO. Elsewhere in the online universe, this can be a bit of a minefield.
On Facebook, a few simple steps can land your business right in the online sweet spot.
There is a single, very straightforward reason why Facebook gives you such a massive and rapid SEO boost. In order to explain, I want to introduce you to a rather interesting website at Alexa:
Alexa is owned by Amazon, and among many other analytical features, it ranks all of the websites in the universe in a numerical order. Now, to start things off, go and take a look at your own website on Alexa.
If it’s even ranked at all, the chances are your global ranking will be somewhere in the millions. Now, I’m not telling you this to depress you, I’m telling you so that you can get some context.
Just to let you know exactly what’s being measured here, this is how Alexa explains the ranking system. The 1-month rank is calculated using a combination of average daily visitors and pageviews over the past month. The site with the highest combination of visitors and pageviews is ranked #1.
So now let’s take a look at their Top 500 sites link.
I’m only interested in the Top 10 actually. As you’d expect, Google is at number 1. We all know already what has to be done to rank well in Google. It will entail agonizing over keywords, testing and tweaking SEO and probably a big spend on advertising. But look at what’s at number 2.
And as we already know, we can get our small business in front of Facebook’s billion+ users for free:
Using Facebook will enable our small business to ride off the coat tails of an online giant. Whilst our small business websites languish at the bottom of the Google search engine rankings, if we perform a few basic tweaks on our business pages, we can supercharge our position in Google.
The Facebook SEO Factor
Here are a few examples of how Facebook business pages appear in the Google and Bing search engines. A search for my company name – Clixeo – brings up my main business site and my business page.
Note how my key word here is, simply, Clixeo.
When I was running my Facebook software, my business page was called Fast Fan Pages. Once again, because I’d used that keyword phrase in my Facebook URL and my descriptive text, the page could be found easily on Google:
The same is true for Bing.
Now don’t laugh too hard, there are other search engines besides Google. And whatever your personal view of them, they can still bring you in some much-needed web traffic. Once again, Fast Fan Pages comes up nice and clearly in the Bing search engine.
This is a very simple example to illustrate a key point about SEO. You need to tell the search engines which word or phrase you want to be ‘discovered’ for. Search engines can’t guess or read your mind.
Be explicit, consistent and clear. Don’t dither with your most important keywords, be laser targeted about selecting them. I’ll repeat the exercise that I make small businesses go through in my Facebook coaching. If I were to find your business, with laser precision, in the search engines, which words would I have to find to find you?
Not your competitor or a business like yours, which keywords would help me to find you? Write down those words and make sure that you use them in your Facebook About section.
Spend some time filling out that section fully. Use your keywords, and make sure that it reads well too. Also, make sure that you insert links back to your main website. Go back to your About section on the front page of your Facebook business page and make sure that the short text preview reads well, uses your keywords and include a link back to your main website.
Really take some time over this, don’t just brush it aside and think that you’ll come back to it later. It’s this text which will help you to get found, not only on Facebook – which has its own internal search – but on Google too.
Just think, by getting this step right, you get the chance to ride on the coat tails of the two biggest websites in the universe. And it’s all for free.
By the way, if your page is unpublished, nobody will find your Facebook business page, let alone the search engines.
Remember to publish your page once you have completed all of the preparatory work:
Be aware too that you don’t get a great search engine ranking overnight, it does take time.
But the best way to get there fastest is to follow these simple steps.
Your Vanity URL
I think I’m probably showing my Facebook age by using the term ‘vanity URL’, but this is still a great way of describing your bespoke Facebook business page web link.
My page URL is https://www.facebook.com/ClixeoUK. My Testing page URL – which will be deleted by the time you read this – is:
Notice how horrible your web link looks by default in that testing page? We need to get that tidied up, not just for the sake of aesthetics and publicity, but also for SEO purposes. To do that, head for your About area, and navigate to Page Info.
Make sure that you read Facebook’s guidelines – accessible via the (?) icon – as there are some naming pitfalls to avoid here. Also, be aware that Facebook will lock you down with your vanity URL and you can’t keep chopping and changing it. At the time of writing, you get one change of web address, then Facebook will lock it down:
Nor should you keep changing it or you send out confused and erratic branding messages.
Remember too, you should be advertising your Facebook URL alongside all your other business contact points, if you keep changing it, your prospects may end up at an error page.
A great link to use to change your URLs is: Log into Facebook | Facebook
Not only can you change all of your business page names here, but you can also access your personal profile name here too. A reminder that Facebook does place restrictions on what you can use for your web address – no generic terms, symbols, misspellings and so on, so please make sure that you follow their guidance.
Final SEO Tips
When you think of SEO, think of keywords and consistency.
Without getting all big budget and agency level about it (I’m assuming that I’m talking to a small business owner here, on a limited budget) if you make a list of 5-10 keywords that describe your business, just try and use them – in a natural way – as much as you can.
If you write posts on your Facebook business page, try and include one or two of your keywords. If you add a photo or video, write a description using one or two of your keywords, it’s good SEO practice to label your photos and videos correctly too.
So you wouldn’t label photos photo1.jpg, photo2.jpg, photo3.jpg and so on, you’d label them red-tulip.jpg, racing-bicycle.jpg and so on. Think of keywords as signposts or pointers, they guide the search engines to tell them what your content is all about, without these clues search engines run blind.
Be mindful too that we are working with two levels of SEO here. The first is on Facebook SEO, this relates to your ability to be found on
Facebook, by Facebook users, using a Facebook search:
Both are of top-level importance, who wants to create a page that can’t be found?
If you’re a big brand name, people will come and look for you anyway, but for small businesses, we have to work a little harder.
The second form of SEO is for the external search engines, Google, Bing, and the many others, and that’s why we need to focus on our vanity URL and our About and Page Info sections.
Please don’t skimp on these sections, they’re vitally important to your success, though as I always remind course delegates, there is nothing better on Facebook than a well-run page.
More on that later.
There are a few more basic SEO matters that we can attend to as well, but this involves social plugins and creating links between all of your social and business sites.
Again, more on that in a later blog.
My Mother Ship Theory
My final tip is to use your About and Page Info area to ensure that you add a link back to your main website or blog.
Where possible, we need to use Facebook to siphon off web traffic to our main place of business.
I always ask the course delegates to be very clear about this. In my view, one of the main end goals of social media is to drive more prospects and customers to our place of business. Sure, we can achieve that via conversations, relationship building and all of the lovely social things that we can do.
But always be certain in your mind, the bottom line is generating more business and you need to be very sure in your own mind where we’re driving people to.
Normally, as this is an online relationship at present, it will be your main business website or blog in the first instance. If you are bricks and mortar business, ultimately you want more people to walk through your door.
But let’s be really clear about this, that is the bottom line of social media, if it doesn’t achieve that end for you, it’s just a hobby or pleasant way to pass the time. That’s fine on your personal profile, but it’s not on your business profile.
There are a few ifs and buts here of course.
If you don’t have a website or blog, and your main web presence is on Facebook, then we miss a step and you want your page visitors to do whatever the most wanted action is for your business.
It could be any number of things, but you need to drive – even herd – all page visitors to complete that action.
If you’re a charity shop, you might want more volunteers in your shop.
If you’re a consultant, your most wanted action might be to get prospects to book a free 15-minute taster session.
If you’re a widget seller, you may want prospects to try – then buy – your widgets.
Always be crystal clear about the endgame – whatever it is for you in your own business – and make all paths lead to that.
Social media outlets should feed that endgame – not in a ruthless ‘Buy now! Buy now!’ kind of way, but in a systematic and focused way which eventually leads to wherever your sales funnel or offer is located.
My aim on my Clixeo business page is to funnel users to my blog:
My blog’s key aim is to extract an email address so that I can send regular follow up emails to monetized offers.
My blog is full of affiliate products which earn me a small income when people go on to purchase.
All of my social media channels lead to my blog.
And my blog allows you to connect with me via my social media channels.
But my key aim in all of this is to get your email address into my follow up the system. That way, if Facebook ever goes the way of MySpace and Friends Reunited, I own the contacts, not Facebook.
So, nurture, develop and build relationships on social media, but make your overall strategy to support your key business outlet in all of this. Your main business website is what you own, you make the rules there, Facebook doesn’t. So use Facebook as the conduit, always remember that your own blog, website or physical premises are the Mother Ship of your business.
What To Say And Do On Your Business Page
It always surprises me how much people fret about what they’re going to do and say on social media. I’ll mention a few legal pitfalls later in this blog, but if you play nice and your default position is positive, supportive and kind, you’re not really going to get into too much trouble on social media.
We’ve been doing social media since we first started painting pictures on cave walls as cavemen and women. That was what we used to tell stories and pass on the news all of those years ago. Nowadays, we can use smartphones, laptops, and PCs, but the intention is just the same.
To share news and to communicate. And if you’re one of those naysayers who claim that ‘social media is just a fad’ … well, it’s a fad that we’ve been involved in since prehistoric times.
And in years to come, it might not be Facebook, Twitter or LinkedIn, but rest assured, we’ll be ‘doing social’ somehow. My post updates might be projected onto your bowl of cornflakes, or directly into your brain via a nano-gadget, but we’ll still be doing social media in years to come.
It’s only the delivery method that changes, the urge to communicate and share has been consistent throughout the history of human beings. So when you partake in Facebook or Twitter for business, think of it more like social media rather than ‘just Facebook’ or ‘just Twitter.’
You’ll definitely be doing social media in 5 years’ time – or whatever its equivalent is at that time – the only question is, how will you be doing it, what will be the method of delivery?
So, with that said, let’s delve into what we mean by being ‘social’ online.
Marketing Without Being Pushy
One of the things that you definitely must not do on Facebook – or social media – is sold, sell, sell. If you keep posting ‘Buy my stuff! Buy my stuff!’ your life on Facebook will be a short and lonely one.
Who wants to go to a business networking meeting only to be confronted by a business owner who only talks about him or herself, and is clearly only interested in us to sell some of his stuff?
‘Nobody’ is the correct answer by the way. So when you do social, remember to be social. You can talk about your business, discuss matters related to your area of business, sometimes it will even be okay to mention special offers or deals against a backdrop of lots of other posts and conversations, but avoid the constant posting of ‘Buy my stuff!’.
We need to get a sense of the life and personality of your business, we need to see that you know your stuff and are a trusted source in your industry.
So instead of using the ‘Buy my stuff’ strategy, consider a few of these ideas:
- Share your own and other peoples’ blog posts and articles related to matters of interest and importance in your industry
- Introduce the ‘behind the scenes’ people who are the backbone of your business, tell their stories, show photos of them at work
- Offer to answer questions about your area of business, be useful and knowledgeable
- Show what’s going on in the office/shop/factory today. Maybe you’re sending out a lot of parcels to customers, perhaps a big shipment just arrived? Show us with photos, tell us in words.
- Share customer stories, get them to explain what they did or bought and how you helped them.
- Introduce new staff or talk about the skills of existing staff. Introduce the office cat if you have one! Show us the people behind your business, let us know the great folks who we’ll be dealing with.
- Dip into the business archives, maybe show a picture of how the premises looked like in years gone by, or how things used to be done in your industry.
- Ask for feedback about anything! It could be a new product line that you want guidance on, maybe it’s an idea for your latest blog article, ‘ask the audience’ is a great technique for social media.
- Share lists related to your area of business. Every business will have its top
5 or 10 customers’ questions, compile these and share the Q&As on Facebook … this is both useful and helpful.
- Give us a ‘behind the scenes’ tour, and offer us some unlimited or exclusive access. Make us feel like we’re seeing something special. It may simply be a photo gallery of how your widgets are made or a rarely seen photo from your art studio. Get creative, but think about how we could get a unique and exclusive glimpse into your business.
The Things That Work Best
We’ve all had long enough using Facebook to get an idea of what works well and what doesn’t. I’ll share with you now some tips on how to post on Facebook, and it’s generally accepted these days that this is good practice.
It’s also the most effective way to do things:
- Use photos, they get more reaction, increased engagement and a greater number of comments
- Keep it short, we don’t want any ‘War and Peace’ posts. Below 250 characters is a good maximum length guide.
- Use emoticons where appropriate, for some reason, they increase shares and comments. Weird eh? I know, but it works!
- Post questions. Facebook users love to answer questions and offer their views, however, please avoid trite questions and don’t overdo it. Make it relevant to the business and something that will get a nice discussion going.
Questions work better than statements.
- Run contests and competitions. This gets its own blog section as there are potential pitfalls here, however, they’re wonderful for engagement.
- Give coupons or discounts. Make it feel like your Facebook users get something exclusive or red carpet. Remember that social media is the modern ‘word of mouth’ so if you post a great offer, it’s likely that it will be shared.
The aim of all of this is to engage users, to encourage response and participation. If your Facebook page becomes a one-way broadcasting machine, it’s unlikely to do well. The more interaction and user input that you can get, the better.
Water Cooler Conversations
At its most basic level, social media is just people chatting. On a business page, it probably needs to be a little more directed and related to your business, but the bottom line is, it’s just conversations.
I always tell course delegates to think of it as water cooler chats, that’s the informal tone that we’re trying to achieve here. With that said, here are some more practical suggestions of things to share:
A new company blog post or online article
Details of new client acquisitions which you can share (ie not confidential)
Press announcements or press articles about your business
Jobs available at your business, internships, research posts, student placements and so on
Awards/recognition received by your business, including nominations
Events you’re hosting or attending, demonstrate that you’re real people who attend networking events
Special offers, sales or discounts, not presented in a ‘Buy my stuff’ way, but in a ‘secret discount for Facebook fans only’ kind of way
- Introduce new staff, spotlight on existing staff, make your business personable. If you’re a ‘bricks and mortar’ business, you want people to step through the door and say ‘Hello X, I’ve seen your photo on Facebook!’
- Funny office ‘stuff’, the sort of discussions and talking points that really get people talking in the office ie do you dunk your biscuits, essential things to keep in your drawer and so on
- The stuff of life – water cooler chats – the Olympics, big TV events, big (but not controversial!) news stories. Make it easily accessible and never divisive, the aim is to have a bit of fun.
- Share other peoples’ posts, they’ll thank you for the shout out and it will help to build rapport. If you’re a local accountant, share your clients’ Facebook business pages. Be generous!
- Be a curator of great content by sharing great articles that other people write. You’ll create real value if people know that you gather and share brilliant articles, tips, and information about your field of business
- Post help requests, from advice (best route to drive to X?) to feedback (what do you think of our X service?) to research (Should we sell X ice-cream in the shop of Y ice-cream?)
- Be generous with thank you messages and shout outs to other people or businesses. Things like ‘Great to meet X at Y event today!’ or ‘Have you tried X shop yet, we just got some great Y there!’ or ‘Good luck to everybody taking part in X charity event today!’ Be generous, gracious and show that you’re a part of your community.
- ‘Oldies but Goodies’ – re-post the best from your blog's archive or great Facebook posts that generated a fabulous response first time around
- Think aloud, by asking ‘What if’ type questions. For instance, ‘What is there was no money and all payments were made online … what impact would that have on your business?’ Start conversations.
- Entertain, but always be professional! By all means, post humor, but never divisive jokes. Business-related humor is always good, post funny things that business owners can relate to. Always stay in safe territory where humor is involved.
- Be a connector by hooking people up professionally. Always be generous on social media, if you can facilitate an introduction, do so.
What Not To Say
It’s as important to know what not to say as it is to know what works well on Facebook. It never ceases to amaze me how so many people appear to have the compulsion to pick fights on social media, steer into the offensive territory or just be plain unpleasant.
Why do people do that?
Adopt a policy of being positive on social media.
You don’t have to post everything that pops into your head.
Create a filter between your brain and what you post.
Now let’s be clear, I am not a lawyer or a legal expert though legal training was an essential part of my professional preparation for my previous career as a broadcast journalist and radio presenter.
I’m hyper-aware of these issues because of my broadcasting background, on social media, you have the same obligations as any other ‘broadcaster’ to follow the rules.
These apply mainly to the following areas:
- Copyright issues
- Data Protection and responsible handling
- Disclosure of confidential information
- Platform ‘Terms and conditions’ (i.e., Facebook’s rules)
- CAP Code and ASA regulations (i.e., advertising standards and regulations)
- Libel/slander – be very careful of this one!
- Contempt of Court – be very careful of this one too!
There is a really simple way to avoid problems on social media – just play nice!
Avoid controversial stuff (unless you’re a politician, campaigner, comedian or similar) and just be positive, generous, gracious and kind.
I don’t want to turn you into a character from a soppy kid’s movie or anything, but this is fairly good advice for life in general. Keep the bad stuff to yourself, share the good stuff.
Bring joy and positivity, avoid negativity and moaning. You won’t go far wrong following those rules and you could avoid a considerable amount of trouble. As I said, I am not a legal expert, but here’s a good starting point if you want to get a better feel for the issues, without having to study for a law degree.
This BBC article is based on Twitter, but it raises and explains many key pitfalls of using social media. Please don’t be afraid of using social media, it’s trouble-free if you follow a few basic rules. ‘Play nice’ is really the best advice that I can give you.
Hopefully, you now have a pretty good idea of what works and what doesn’t on Facebook and social media in general. To supplement this, here are 3 more practical tips to help you to get better at this:
1: Follow other Facebook business pages, in your field of expertise and elsewhere. See what works well and adapt those ideas for your own business.
2: Connect to these two great websites, which are packed with best practice tips and the latest hints and techniques:
Post Planner Blog | Facebook Marketing Best Practices, and http://www.socialmediaexaminer.com/
3: Experiment with your posts and strategies. I always tell small businesses, ‘Do more of what works well, and less of what doesn’t’.
Not very profound, I know, but it’s to encourage a spirit of experimentation. Using Facebook Insights (more on that in a later blog!), you can track what goes well and what doesn’t.
If something works well … rinse and repeat!