I was scrolling through my Facebook News Feed last week and came across an Offer from a local restaurant whose Facebook page I’m a fan of.
The Offer was for a free dessert with any purchase of an entree and it was expiring that day. Since I love the restaurant already and have a sweet tooth the size of California, it was a no-brainer. I clicked on the Offer to claim it and within a couple of minutes received an email from Facebook notifying me of my claim. I had the option of printing out the Offer or bringing my cell phone into the restaurant and showing them the claim.
With a free dessert coming my way I decided to head to the restaurant for dinner later that day. When I arrived, I showed them the email on my phone and was set up with a glorious free piece of key lime pie at the end of dinner. The whole experience couldn’t have gone more smoothly. And, because of how easy it was, I’m going to make sure my friends know about the restaurant and recommend they go there too.
Targeted Word-of-Mouth Marketing for Your Business with Facebook Offers
The deal that I just described is an example of a Facebook Offer. Facebook Offers are opportunities for you to create coupons on your Facebook business page (you need at least 400 fans to use Offers). You then pay a small fee to promote the offer to fans of your page as well as friends of those fans. The fee that you pay starts at $5 in the form of advertising costs; a pretty small price to pay if your Offer is one that people will want to take advantage of.
Offers are essentially another form of advertising on Facebook. They’re also an additional opportunity for businesses to promote our products and services through targeted word-of-mouth marketing on Facebook.
Offers actually rolled out earlier this year and were free to use for a few months while Facebook determined whether the program would be a success. But as more and more businesses jumped on board and realized that Offers worked, Facebook decided to start charging the small fee. I know, I know. It’s another fee that we’re being charged to use Facebook. But, honestly, it’s 5 bucks. It’s a cheap advertising opportunity to test out to see if it brings in new customers and more money for your business.
Let’s take a look at the benefits of Facebook Offers to further see why they’re worth testing.
Three Reasons Why You Should Consider Facebook Offers
1. Organic word-of-mouth promotion for your business. When someone claims your Offer, it shows up in their News Feed. Thus, friends of that person then see that their friend just claimed an Offer from you. This is awesome word-of-mouth promotion for your business.
2. Tracking the success of your Offer is easy through bar and promotional codes. It may seem like common sense but, unfortunately, a lot of people don’t think about tracking. In order for coupons to be effective, you have to be able track their redemption. A great way to do that is by using bar codes or promotional codes. Facebook Offers allow you to use these codes. They’re an easy way to track when people redeem your Offer, even if you are sending people to a 3rd party supplier (Amazon, for example) to buy your product. You can not only use these codes in your Offers but Facebook will also tell you exactly how many Offers were claimed. That way you can track how many were claimed against how many were actually redeemed.
3. Online shopping topped $200B in 2011 Yes, you read that correctly. 200 billion dollars. Facebook Offers gives you an easy opportunity to get your business in front of a targeted group of those online shoppers. As I write this, it’s the end of October and the holiday shopping season is pretty much upon us. What better time of the year to create a coupon for your business and test whether Offers work?
Step-by-Step Video to Help You Get Started with Facebook Offers
The below video is a tutorial which takes you through exactly how to set up a Facebook Offer for your business.
Remember this When Setting Up Your Facebook Offer
As you go through and set up your Offer, I want to give you a few tips that will help set you up for the most success:
- Remember, this is Facebook and people aren’t necessarily in the shopping mindset. You’re more likely to get people to pay attention to and claim your Offer with a “soft” sell. Don’t get all used car salesman-y with your ad copy (no offense to used car salesmen, of course).
- Test speaking directly to your Facebook fans. “Facebook-only special: 50% off your next coffee” or something like that.
- You only have 90 characters for your ad copy so be as specific as possible. If your Offer is location-specific, for example, specify that.
- Make sure the image you use catches attention, is relevant to your Offer and is easy to distinguish.
How Are Your Facebook Offers Claimed?
Facebook makes it really easy for people to claim your Offer. Once your Offer starts running, all someone has to do is click on the “Get Offer” link to claim it. They’ll then get an email (sent to the email they use to log-in to Facebook) with details on how to redeem the Offer. If your business is an actual store, people can either print out the Offer email and bring it in or they can simply bring their cell phone with them and show you the Offer on their phone. If you’re an online business, you’ll want to include a redemption code in your Offer like we discussed earlier. That way people can enter the code on your site (or 3rd party retailer site) when redeeming.
If You Don’t Test, You’ll Hate Yourself Later
Ever heard the saying, “find what works and keep doing it”? Finding what works comes from testing. And as with anything we do for our business, testing to see what works and what doesn’t work is key. Especially when that testing is inexpensive. From everything I have seen, Facebook Offers is an opportunity worth testing. If it doesn’t work for your business the first time, consider changing the offer or image or ad copy. You might even want to try running it on different days of the week to see if that helps. If it does work for you, though, awesome. You’ll have found another cost effective and efficient way to market your business to a targeted audience.
I’d love to hear from you, have you tried Facebook Offers? If so, did they work for you? If you haven’t yet, why not?
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