Almost every adult with a computer in the US is on Facebook. People spend an average of 10 hours a month on Facebook talking about their lives, their hobbies and passions. This is what Facebook was originally made for. It tried to bring the social experience of the real world to the Internet.
In the early days of Facebook (2007), you could build a fan page and it would get organic likes. You didn’t have to pay for anything. This is a great example of that: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Coffee/38900050859. This page was last updated March 7th 2012. It’s worth probably $1,000,000 a year, possibly more. No one is using it. (If you’re the owner of this page, please contact me. I want to buy it from you!)
Look at this image above. There are almost 600,000 likes (there will be soon because this page is still growing organically) but only 72 talking about this. That “talking about this” statistic means how many people are interacting with the page. You can fix that pretty easily by posting viral content.
Up until 2011 you could still get organic likes without paying for them. But in early 2012 that changed and Facebook changed its algorithm to make you pay for likes. Hey, Facebook has to make money, right?
Why do we want likes? When you build a page for coffee lovers, the people who like that page, love coffee. You now have a huge, precisely targeted audience of coffee lovers. They want to see posts about coffee – humorous and emotional photos and videos that they can like and share with their friends. When you have a Facebook page with 500,000 + fans, you can sell them t-shirts, coffee makers, membership to coffee of the month clubs, coffee mugs, gift certificates to Starbucks and a million other coffee related products…for free. That’s right. Once these people like your page, you can advertise to them 24/7/365 for free!
How does that work? When you post content on your page it appears in the Facebook user’s newsfeed. That’s where people spend the majority of their 10 hours a month on Facebook.
The more interaction there is with your page posts, the more likely it will appear in a person’s newsfeed. So posting the right (viral) images and videos is crucial.
Let’s look at this page. It’s a great example of what I’m talking about: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Adult-humor-18/152679441569607
Amazingly, this person also doesn’t know what they’re doing. They’re doing almost everything right, but they never gave their page a Facebook page address like Facebook.com/AdultHumor. Instead it’s https://www.facebook.com/pages/Adult-humor-18/152679441569607.
Now, look at the “talking about”. It’s about 8 times more than the amount of likes. That’s amazing! The reason is because all of the content on the page is highly viral. People want to like, comment and share the content. That means that pretty much everything posted on this page will appear in the newsfeed of people that like it. These guys can also be making a $1,000,000 a year from that page, but they’re not because they don’t know what they’re doing. (If you’re the owner of this page, please contact me and I’ll show you how to make a ton of money from it.)
Here’s an example of a great viral post:
Just look at the interaction on this post! 186,00 shares. That’s 186,000 people who are being exposed to this page for free because their friends are sharing it with their friends. 740,000 likes for this post. That’s amazing and look at the 13,000 comments. This is pure Facebook goodness. Just amazing stuff.
We can learn some simple lessons from this post.
- You need to post images. Make sure they’re sized so the text appears in the Facebook post and not over the edges.
- They have to be shareable to go viral.
- They need to be funny or emotional.
- It’s easier to like a post than to share it.
- It’s easier to share a post than to leave a comment.
So, this is what we want — a highly viral page with a lot of likes of targeted customers.
Here’s an example of a page that’s doing everything right: https://www.facebook.com/i.love.dogs.in
The first thing you see is the Facebook address which is “I love dogs in”. Maybe they’re based in India? I’m not sure what the “in” is.
Now look at this:
They’re selling products, they’re using professional graphics, they’re using the tabs correctly and the talking about is 3 times more than the likes. They get an A+ from me. The only thing I would say is that the page is too general. People don’t love dogs. They love THEIR dogs. They love their breed, not just dogs in general. A page about pit bulls would do better than a general page about dogs.
That’s how Facebook works at least in 2013 (and did in 2012). Until things change (and they change a lot on Facebook) this is how you make money on Facebook.
Build a page based on a very precise, targeted audience with a topic that people want to share with their friends. Get those likes as cheap as possible (that’s the real challenge these days). Post viral content to keep the interaction (and thus your Edgerank) up. Slowly drip products into the posts. Make sure they’re totally relevant for your audience.
Now you know what to do. Get out there and crush it!