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Top 10 Ways to Use Facebook to Promote your Business for Free

November 18, 2007 - Posted by Shama Kabani

There are plenty of social media platforms that you can participate in today, and they all have their pros and cons. The best way to choose a platform to participate in is to look at the people that hang out there. In my opinion, Facebook is one of the best platforms for networking-both personally and professionally. I also use Linked In and Twitter. Linked In is nice for having a more or less static professional profile online. Twitter is good for “blasting” bits and pieces of news to friends and clients. The one social networking group I am not part of is MySpace. Privacy controls are more lax at MySpace than I prefer. Of all the social networks, Facebook is the real gem when it comes to all-round marketing and networking.

I have been using Facebook for the past two years, and it is an excellent marketing tool. Here are 10 ways you can use Facebook to promote your business for FREE!

1. Create an Excellent Profile- This is THE first step in utilizing Facebook efficiently. If you think of Facebook in terms of a marketing campaign, your profile page can be considered your “brand.” Here is my profile. A strong profile should include: a professional picture (please resist the urge to put up pictures of yourself in this year’s Halloween costume-unless of course that is part of your brand), your contact information, your website address, and your personal interests. You don’t have to list out all your personal interests-you can stick to listing just you professional interests if you prefer.

2. Add Friends- This is what makes Facebook really special-the relationships it allows you to build and sustain. The more friends you have, the more affective your marketing and networking efforts will be. The most simple way to add friends is to use Facebook’s own tools to search for current friends already using the platform. Once you have added all current friends, you can start adding acquaintances. One unique feature of Facebook is that is allows you to look at friends of friends. You can build up a huge network this way in no time.

3. Join Groups- You can join online groups within Facebook that are related to what you do. There are groups for consultants, coaches, and trainers…almost all professional service providers have some type of an online group. I am part of many marketing groups and have made quite a few contacts that way. So, find a few groups that suit your tastes and get to mingling!

4. Create your Own Group- Can’t find a group that really fits your style-create your own! You can add members, publish articles, carry on discussions, and probably meet quite a few prospects.

5. List your Events- Hosting a Teleseminar or speaking somewhere? Create an events page and invite all those you want. You can even see how many RSVP and get feedback from attendees. Marketing doesn’t get easier (or cheaper!) than this.

6. Syndicate your Blog- You can syndicate your blog on your profile page. This basically means that every time you make a post, it will automatically show up on your profile page. More Exposure = More Readers = More Potential Leads.

7. Reach OUT! – Are you a fan or admirer of someone’s work? Reach out to them on Facebook! Many colleagues of mine check their Facebook messages more regularly than their email. They are also more likely to respond to Facebook messages. Don’t feel comfortable sending out a message to someone you don’t know? No worries! Leave them a “I enjoy your work!” blurb on their wall. (All profiles come with “virtual walls” where friends and acquaintances can leave comments.)

8. Send Virtual Gifts- Want to show your appreciation for someone? Send them a virtual gift. You can choose from a bunch of balloons to a potted plant that actually sits on the recipient’s profile and grows over time (my favorite).

9. Use the Marketplace- Facebook has an online marketplace that allows you to list your services and products for free. This is a great way to gain exposure. You can also list certain things you are looking for. I often find some great books through the Marketplace.

10. Create a Community- Perhaps Facebook’s greatest benefit is that it allows you to create a community. It provides you a group of people who are constantly connected to you, and are open to hearing your message. Write on people’s walls, respond to their comments, and introduce them to each other. So…start building your brand and leveraging social media networks for marketing!

Action Steps:

1. Join Facebook (If you aren’t already using it!)

2. Feel Free to Add Me as a Friend

3. Join the free Marketing Mastermind Group on Facebook

66 Responses to Top 10 Ways to Use Facebook to Promote your Business for Free

  1. Mike Zeuthen says:

    This is the best way to promote your business on Facebook. Then use Facebook ads to advertise your business to your target audience.

    http://apps.facebook.com/businesstwo/

    Business 3.0.

  2. Michael Bailey says:

    Great list, and you are right, it does go well with my Social Networking Whitepaper.

    I have some other thoughts as well which I need to get out of my head – I think putting them out here for others is a great thing to do.

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  6. linkerjpatrick says:

    Great tips. I have give a link to this post on my own blog for the benefit of my own clients. It’s great to see that some are recognizing social networks as being valuable and far from frivolous.

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  8. Shama says:

    Hi Patrick,

    Thanks for the track-back and the compliments! Please let me know if there is anything else in terms of marketing and Facebook that would interest you.

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  12. jimmy reese says:

    These are some great ideas.

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  17. Julie Anne says:

    This is the best explanation for marketing on Facebook I’ve read. You convinced me!

    Gonna add a link to this post on my blog, too. Everyone should know how to do this.

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  20. Bob says:

    I’d like to know if this is still a good idea joining facebook in 2008. Well written article that I will be happy to share with my readers.

  21. Shama says:

    Hi Bob,

    It definitely is! Facebook is still a very hot networking spot.

    Another great one (specific for sales professionals or serious networkers) is http://www.MyN10.com. They launch in 2 weeks so I suggest you join now while the annual fee is 50% off.

  22. Hanif Rehman says:

    Hi Sharma,

    I’ve been using FB for quite some time and dont exactly agree with your point on Groups. For a group to be effective there needs to be some form of control rather than spamming the whole discussion board with offers of business and how successful their method was in making a million in just 3 months. If you look at some of the popular groups you will see that they are infested with such ads of little or no business value, hence I would use few groups and only those that are not going to spam me like crazy on business offers.

    Speak soon,

    Kind regards,

    Hanif Rehman

    P.S. Love your profile pic, will add you as a friend.

  23. Shama Hyder says:

    Hi Hanif,

    In terms of groups, you are right. There are some that are filled with spam. But the nice thing is that Facebook is huge.

    For every group that is in chaos, there is another that is managed well. Find what works for you!

    Thanks for your comments on the blog.

    -Shama

  24. Rachel Gawith says:

    Will pop right aloing to facebook now and start my ‘marketing campaign’ using it.

    Rachel
    http://www.thetravelbug.org

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  27. funny t shirts says:

    Nice post about using Facebook. I can see where some of these ideas could really help me out. I am going to put some more time into it soon. Thanks

    http://www.wizeguyztees.com

  28. Jeff Newman - Daily Bible Verse says:

    Thanks for this post. I have found great success using Facebook. I started a group called Jesus Is Number #1. I am amazed at how many people have joined it. Thanks Facebook for helping spread the Word.

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  30. Greg says:

    These are all very logical obvious things…and I’ve never seen any of them actually work for a any company on more than a microscopic-scale. Any examples of exactly what will make the above notes effective?

  31. Shama says:

    Hi Greg,

    Thanks for commenting!

    One, I am very happy to hear that these sound like logical obvious things to you. A lot of people are very new to Facebook.

    Two,yes-many examples. I will be sure to share some case studies!

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  33. Jaunesk says:

    Haven’t sign up Facebook yet. Timely advice.

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  36. Under 30 Years Old says:

    Are you serious? This isn’t “how to use Facebook to promote your business,” this is “HOW TO USE FACEBOOK.”

    I hope the target audience for this post is over 40 and has no idea what “social networking” means.

  37. Shama says:

    Hi Under 30-

    Yes, this article is aimed towards people who are relatively new to social media and social networking.

    Thanks for taking the time to comment.

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  39. WhoWantsLove says:

    Thanks Shama, I am ready to launch my love baby and let the world know!

  40. arshad says:

    interesting article.i am launching a discount gadget shop can you advice on a facebook statergy to drive traffic to my site .Your example is good for blogs and articles and advice etc

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  42. Andreas says:

    Working on my profile right now – very good checklist!

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  45. Don Stevens says:

    Thanks for sharing this. I will share it also, would it be okay to print this for co-workers who are in the dark? I’ll still have your name and URL?

  46. Shama Hyder says:

    Hi Don-

    Yes, feel free to share this with co-workers.

    Thanks!

    - Shama

  47. Chale Espinosa says:

    How valuable is it to have a website linked to FB and blog.

    Thank you

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  49. Tom says:

    Thank you so much for this information.

    I just came up with 10 ideas, like seriously 10 ideas.

    -Tom
    _NYLaughs

  50. Sai Bharadwaj says:

    You look great!

  51. Cincinnnati & Columbus, OH Marketing says:

    Great info, Shama. Businesses today also have a huge competitive advantage if they leverage social media not only as a way to promote themselves but as a means to listen to what people are saying about them and their industry. Then, they can inject themselves into the middle of collective conversations and immediately make an impact with numerous people at one time. Social media has huge potential in many ways, and a smart business will learn how to use all those ways to its advantage, whether on its own or through the help of an expert.

  52. Nicolette Coetzee says:

    Thanks Shama! Your info are always clear and to the point. Oh yes, and on another note – your Online marketing plan has become my marketing bible.

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  54. Sergey says:

    Great advice and tips. I have created a page for my company about a month ago, but the success has been limited. I did invite most of my friends to become fans of the page several times, but only a few of them actually did. Even then, no one really interacts with the page, hence, there is no mentioning in people’s newsfeeds. Do you have any further suggestions, apart from the paid options, of how to increase the number of fans and further engage them. Here’s a link to the page on facebook if you have a chance to have a look: facebook.com/pages/Project-Resource-Limited/361875956261?v=box_3#!/pages/Project-Resource-Limited/361875956261
    Thank you!

  55. Vijay says:

    Its very informative & useful. I almost got the stuff what I was searchinf for.
    Thanks a lot…..:)

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  57. greg proud says:

    Excellent information, will start implementing your ideas.
    Thanks,
    Greg Proud
    myjavafit

  58. Barry says:

    Thanks for the great info in your post. I have never considered facebook as a marketing tool until now.

    Cheers

  59. Michael LaRocca says:

    This is an excellent list. It contains nine things I’ve stumbled into over the past year or two, which is good for my confidence. It also contains one item I’d never heard of before, the open marketplace, so I’ve got a new project. Thanks!

  60. Mobile Application Development Company says:

    It’s great to find your article. You have list out the to promote business in simpler way and in efficient manner.

    I have an account in face book but as not surf and navigated more, was looking for article like this. Please share your ideas on how to use social networking sites effectively.

  61. Ruben says:

    Hi Shama, thanks for the tips on the article. I will try to put them in action. Hopefully it will help to promote my Trichology Hair Analysis System better.

  62. Shakti Saran says:

    Hi Shama and http://www.marketingzen.com, Thank You for sharing! You might also get value from http://www.facebook-fb.com to Submit and List Facebook Page URL, Products, Services, City, State, Country of Business and to Explore and Find Facebook Page URL of Business. Kindly share it with your friends! Best! Shakti Saran

  63. Kendra says:

    Howdy! Quick question that’s totally off topic. Do you know how to make your site mobile friendly? My blog looks weird when viewing from my iphone4. I’m trying to find a template or plugin that might be able to resolve this issue. If you have any recommendations, please share. Thank you!

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  65. Shama Hyder says:

    Good for you Andreas!

  66. Shama Hyder says:

    Hi Chale-

    It is very valuable because FB allows you to build on the relationships you establish on your blog. It is like taking it one step further!

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