How to Prepare Your Facebook Business Page for Your Marketing Campaign

Make sure that your Facebook business page is ready for any contest or campaign that you implement. Campaigns can be simple or structured. Regardless, the most important aspect is making sure that people know that you have a campaign.

Your cover photo

If possible, the theme of your business page should match your branding. When you conduct a campaign, you may want to tweak the cover photo design to highlight a theme, but keep your branding. For example, a Christmas photo of the week contest might feature holiday colors or other images to give the campaign a holiday theme, but keep your brand’s logo or other defining characteristic on the photo also.

The cover photo is a great way to highlight your campaign while still branding the look of your business page. For example, you might include bells and holiday colors for a holiday campaign, or pictures of dogs and cats for a cutest pet photo contest.

Remember that your cover photo is 851 pixels wide by 315 pixels tall. (Facebook prohibits calls to action on the cover photo, such as “Enter Now,” so be sure to use the photo only for branding and design aspects.)

A custom tab

You host your contest on an page tab. It’s best to have a custom page for the contest that shows only a preview to nonfollowers and the full version to followers. When visitors click Like, they see another view of the tab. You can utilize this setting when you create a custom Facebook tab.

By setting up separate tabs for followers and nonfollowers, you save some content for followers, thereby giving nonfollowers one more reason to become a follower. More importantly, when your campaign attracts tons of traffic, you can gain more of those visitors as followers. It’s important to note that you can’t have the entry come by way of visitors Liking your business page; the entry must happen in the third-party app.

Contact forms

Using a contact form extends your lead capture beyond only people Liking your page. Facebook contests are a great way to increase your e-mail list as well.

You embed a contact form in your Facebook tab in the same way you embed HTML on most websites. Using the Static HTML app, you can simply place your code in the fields. You don’t have to know how to create a form — several services offer easily built forms.

You should try Formstack because its service has many functions that enable you to create lead capture forms, including database storage for the data, and connect it to your favorite e-mail marketing services.

Canvas apps

Canvas apps are different than the common page tabs that are part of your business page. A canvas app enables the owner of the page to occupy the entire screen in the context of the application. This screen includes the ticker, which updates with activity from the application, as well as other similar applications.

Canvas apps are 760 pixels wide, which allows for a reasonable amount of content; however, it’s just shy of the 810-pixel width of the page tabs in your business page.

Setting up a canvas app can enable an interactive experience between users. This feature is most useful when your contest involves a game or something that can display real-time activity in the app. One distinct disadvantage is that canvas apps redirect your fans to an alternate URL. This means your visitors may have a few seconds of wait time as the canvas app loads.

Canvas apps are great when more page space is necessary (or when you need to enhance the quality of your campaign). Offerpop is a great third-party tool for setting up a canvas app–based campaign. (Most games are hosted on a canvas app.)

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The ticker

One big benefit of a Facebook campaign is the additional visibility created through the activity feed. Specifically, the Facebook ticker displays your friends’ activity on the top-right side of your home screen.

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Expect the following activity in the ticker:

  • Status updates: If your contest encourages people to post a status update, people will see it in their news feed, but it appears also in the ticker.

  • New business page Likes: Often, contests result in new Likes for your business page. These appear in the ticker as well.

  • Likes and comments: When people Like or comment on a post in your contest, the ticker displays it.

  • Real-time data: All the data you see in the ticker can be seen elsewhere on Facebook. The ticker just displays the data as it happens in real time. This factor might encourage you to carefully time your campaign launch. When you launch a Facebook campaign, you may attract more activity through the action showing up in people’s news feeds.

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