For those of us managing multiple Facebook pages, Facebook’s decision to ditch the default landing tab option (several months back) was quite a bummer.
When a brand creates a custom landing page within Facebook with a call-to-action to LIKE the page, the conversion rate of new fans can skyrocket – making every marketing dollar go a bit further.
While fan growth may not be the most important metric, it’s a key indicator of a healthy social media presence. I’m not one to complain endlessly about Facebook changes, but not being able to set a default landing tab for new visitors is clearly a negative for business.
Rather than taking a bitter approach and declaring the end of Facebook for business, marketers need to get a little creative to keep conversion rates sky-high. So how is it done?
Link to your Facebook landing tab, everywhere.
Whatever your strategy might be for Facebook specifically, chances are you’re going outside of Facebook for fan recruitment. Where are you promoting your Facebook page? Your website? Twitter? Business cards? PPC ads? In-store signage? Tatooed on your chest? Whenever you present a link to your Facebook page (anywhere), point the prospect to the landing tab URL, not your Facebook page URL.
For example, if I’m Pringles (not a client), pointing prospects to http://www.facebook.com/Pringles would land them on the wall:
No call-to-action, no explanation of why they should join the page – it’s up to the user to figure all that out. Even if the user is interested in the page, research indicates they aren’t likely to click the Like button and subscribe to your page.
Instead, users should be pointed to http://www.facebook.com/Pringles/app_284240051610543, where they will see:
The call to action is obvious, the value of the page is clear, it’s design is simple and it works. This should always be the first place potential fans see when coming across your Facebook page.
Customizing the Link
You’re probably thinking there’s a huge problem with the process above, and you’re right. Telling someone to go to http://www.facebook.com/Pringles/app_284240051610543 is ridiculous since it’s impossible to remember or even write down.
The work-around? Customize the link in one of two ways:
Option 1: Use Bitly. This is an ultra-simple process and completely free. Bitly allows you to customize any link to appear clean and well-branded. For example:
could be shortened to
Option 2: Purchase a custom URL. This is even better than Option 1 and is relatively inexpensive. If I’m Pringles, I might purchase PringlesOnFacebook.com to drive users to my Facebook page. After purchasing, I would set up a 301 redirect so the user would automatically land on your desired landing page within Facebook (setting up the 301 redirect is a bit technical and will depend on your web hosting).
- Original link: http://www.facebook.com/Pringles/app_284240051610543
- Option 1: on.fb.me/WelcomeToPringles
- Option 2: PringlesOnFacebook.com
Do I wish Facebook would bring back the default tab? Yes. Are these perfect solutions? No. But as marketers, we can’t allow changes outside of our control dictate business performance. When a negative software change occurs in social media, we have to get creative and find the best work-around.
What other best practices can you share to increase conversion rates? What tactics have you put in place to achieve consistent fan growth?