Facebook is perhaps the most widely used social media website all over the world. Facts and figures found by InSites Consulting says that Facebook shares more than 25 billion forms of content, by link sharing and ad pages every month.
Most of the Facebook users are from US, while 51 percent of Facebook users log into their account twice a day for both professional and personal reasons.
Moreover, the most preferred activity on Facebook is sending personal messages, checking friend’s online status, commenting on other’s status, uploading images and frequenting the ‘like’ Facebook pages.
Why do you need to know this? Because within Facebook lies a potentially – profitable opportunity to harness free traffic and direct it to your business.
If you’re an online entrepreneur… you’ll love this!
Facebook is one of the best social networking mediums to get free traffic. If you are familiar with the site, you’re well aware that Facebook does provide a separate ad-promotion system based on a chosen market and geographical location but will cost you some money.
This post is all about getting “free traffic”.
Your first step to getting “free traffic” is to make as many friends as possible. You will be surprised at the number of marketers who use Facebook as a potential traffic puller.
For starters, if you have a Facebook niche, you can find groups in the same domain or if you want, you can add general friends too. Your first aim after creating a Facebook account is to build a huge friend list. These friend groups attract hundreds of visitors. You need to join those groups which are ‘active’ and get daily participants.
You can use the discussion board and ‘wall’ to ask others to become your friend. Use the “invite new friends” option to email other Facebook members and politely request them to add you as their friend.
Mind you, your friend requests should not be ‘spam.’ By spam, I mean don’t get into a marketing pitch right away – those are readily ignored and deleted.
As you start making friends, converse with them by posting, let’s say, status updates about your daily life and you can chat with them too. You are still in the phase where you have to keep “marketing” out of the loop.
First, you have to convince them that your interest is not purely business, which means, “earning money” but to make some genuine friends. However, as you begin to build your credibility on Facebook, you can start your marketing ventures… subtly!
Suppose you have a WordPress blog of giveaways, kind of a “daily deals” website where you review the products that you are giving away. Such blogs are best promoted on Facebook. When you put up a review or get a new product, you can write about that on your blog and also link it on Facebook.
So what happens now is that your Facebook friends will click on the blog links, visit your site and if they are interested, they can participate in product giveaways. The key, important word here is – “interest.”
It is best if you add friends who share your specific interests, then getting the free traffic from Facebook.
Another worthwhile idea to consider is to create your own Facebook group as it will help you to further customize Facebook traffic. Once again, do this after you have lots of friends. You can create your Facebook page and name it after the blog you have. Facebook has clear – easy to follow instructions to create such groups so this won’t be a problem.
After creating a group, invite all your friends, especially those who are interested in your blog, such as the giveaway concept for instance. To get people to join regularly, you should mail your Facebook link to your list and promote further through forum signatures and other blog posts.
If you are dealing with something which is in demand, you can get hundreds of members in few weeks.
To keep the Facebook group running, you have to keep it active with regular updates and interesting posts so that friends and visitors are motivated to discuss them.
Also, remember to place your webpage links into the group page description on Facebook because it will help friends and visitors link back to your site. It is not necessary to upload website related content and links on Facebook groups only, but you can also place images, videos and other tidbits that you think your Facebook friends will find interesting.
One alternative to Facebook groups is the Facebook “Fan” page. Search Facebook for ‘fan’ pages and you’ll see lots of celebrity and business pages.
Unlike groups, Facebook visitors cannot “join” these pages but just “like” it. By doing so, the connection is posted on the member’s profile page and this feed can be seen by others connected with that particular person.
An advantage is that visitors of this page need not be a Facebook user; they can land on your page from anywhere. Through “Fan” pages, you can market and promote your website or generally create public awareness, depending on the intent of your blog. The “Fan” pages are easy to customize, has greater functionality and has less number of limitations.
To sum up our discussion, we can agree on the fact that Facebook groups and fan pages does bring in a lot of traffic “free” of cost but you need to invest your time to make this work effectively.
So more than a monetary investment, it is a time investment. Give yourself at least 2-3 months to get favorable results from Facebook promotions.
As a final word, just make sure that you target a particular group through Facebook groups. Do not use it as a marketing platform ONLY, otherwise you stand to lose lots of potential traffic and people may classify it as ‘spam’.
So try to stay away from excessive Facebook marketing and use these strategies wisely!