Gini Dietrich

Four Ideas for Your Business Facebook Page

By: Gini Dietrich | January 16, 2012 | 

Let’s talk Facebook today, shall we?

Sorry, Howie. I know you’re not a fan so you can go read another blog today.

I’m going to make a pretty big assumption most of you have at least checked out the new timeline. Even if you hate it, if you’re using social media for work, it’s important to understand how these most recent changes affect your business pages.

You’re going to become pretty creative in how you use Facebook now. I’m going to give you some tips.

  1. Ads, Sponsored Stories, and CreativityMari Smith, Facebook expert extraordinaire, posted, “The news feed is *clearly* favoring posts and activity from friends and subscriptions (vs. fan pages) — it’s becoming increasingly difficult to get fan page content seen in the news feed. So, do businesses then need to turn to ads/sponsored stories?” While I’m not completely sold on the idea that, in order to be seen in the news feed you have to buy the space, creativity is definitely something you need to have in order to get people to see your stream. We do Facebook question of the week to get people to visit our wall. Some additional ideas are coming this year.
  2. Subscriptions. If you don’t already have the subscription button turned on for your wall, do it now. This allows people to subscribe to your feeds so they always see what you have to say. You can create public posts and private posts so you’re not sharing everything with everyone. Think about the people within your organization doing the same thing. For instance, my subscription feed is public and I put stuff on there that is both characteristic of me and newsworthy or interesting. The people inside your organization are what makes the culture. Share them with the world.
  3. Recommendations. On the right-hand side of the company Facebook wall is a spot for recommendations. Ask friends to write something there. Not only does it live on that right-hand side for all to see, it hits the stream of the person who wrote it, expanding your network beyond the people who already know you.
  4. Photos. Use the cover photo and other photos to tell the company story and show off the culture. And change them frequently. People like to look at something visual and, the more you give them, the more apt they are to spend time on your page.

I’m sure there are a ton more ideas. In fact, you should pick up a copy of super smart Facebook marketer Brian Carter’s, The Like Economy to get some additional ideas. He teaches you not only how to be found in the news stream, but to do it in an engaging way that generates revenue.

What else would you add?

About Gini Dietrich

Gini Dietrich is the founder and CEO of Arment Dietrich, an integrated marketing communications firm. She is the author of Spin Sucks, co-author of Marketing in the Round, and co-host of Inside PR. She also is the lead blogger at Spin Sucks and is the founder of Spin Sucks Pro. Join the Spin Sucks   community!

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  • On point one I’d put the emphasis on creativity. I’ve done a few tests with clients, and with the newsfeeds of a variety of people. I don’t believe that the newsfeed is actually favoring individuals over business pages. The pages that I see in my feed are the ones that are active, and I see them on a semi-regular basis. That’s why we need to actively cultivate the activity on your page. If people engage with your content, it will show up more frequently. If you update more frequently (and there is a threshold which is different for every business) it will show up more easily.

    • ginidietrich

      @KenMueller I think, though, the idea of updating more frequently is being pushed down in favor of people’s posts you comment on. So, if you stalk my business page, but never comment, but always comment on my individual page, you won’t see AD as often as you’ll see me.

      • @ginidietrich Perhaps, but that’s where the creativity comes in. Good content posted frequently will rise in the feed. And now I need to stop commenting on your personal page so I don’t see you as often. Nutwood.

        • ginidietrich

          @KenMueller LOL! Just comment on Arment Dietrich so you deal with Lisa and Molli instead of me. Nutwood.

        • @ginidietrich Well, they are much nicer than you…

        • ginidietrich

          @KenMueller Clearly

  • DemasiadaBella

    Good post. My fb business page is a ghost town, i have the social links on my site youtube vids but ppl r bypassing it 🙁 @ginidietrich

    • ginidietrich

      @DemasiadaBella Do you ask questions and do things like that to get people engaged?

      • DemasiadaBella

        @ginidietrich yes I try but its not working. I notice most of my communications are by email. I’ll keep trying my pg is fairly new.

        • ginidietrich

          @DemasiadaBella Keep working on it. I think it took about six months for ours to take hold

  • garious1

    I think that Facebook is more visually-oriented so adding catchy pictures that are inspiring/educational can be a nice way to engage your fans and get plenty of shares/comments/likes as well. Thanks for the tips you wrote here – I might as well experiment on it.

    • ginidietrich

      @garious1 If you’ve been on FB for a long time, it’s been interesting to watch the transition from text updates to photos and videos. People like the visual stuff a lot better.

      • garious1

        @ginidietrich I’ve noticed 😉

  • RebeccaCicione

    I especially like the #3! RT @kmueller62 Four Ideas for Your Business Facebook Page via @ginidietrich

  • RebeccaCicione

    Question – is the recommendations feature not yet available on all pages?

    • @RebeccaCicione Rebecca, it should be available, but you won’t see it on any pages for which you are an admin, I guess because they don’t want you writing recommendations for your own business.

    • ginidietrich

      @RebeccaCicione What @KenMueller said. 🙂

  • craigmillertv

    @ginidietrich Business Pages don’t have Timeline on, correct? Then how can there be a good cover photo on it? Am I missing something?

    • ginidietrich

      @craigmillertv You are correct. I just meant the photos across the top of the page. Wrong choice of words.

      • ybyUun2351JJHP

        @ginidietrich Darn 50 followers straight away check out yours

      • craigmillertv

        @ginidietrich Ok. For a moment, I got excited… 🙂 Would be nice to have Timeline for Pages also.

        • ginidietrich

          @craigmillertv I can’t imagine that won’t be coming next

    • timmersvyzj9


  • Jmodio

    We are talking about Facebook pages, right @ginidietrich ? Cover photo still doesn’t exist for pages

    • ginidietrich

      @Jmodio You’re correct. I meant just the photos at the top of the page.

  • first of all we know facebook wants everyone paying for sponsored stories and ads. free use hurts their IPO. and i will be shocked if the pages stay free or dont change to hinder your use in more ways to get you to pay for ads.

    that said i run a client page and these are great tips gini. we already post photos or links for all posts. we then use the URL for the photos and post on twitter driving visits to FB. Sadly you cant do this with links…BUT you can on G+ which is why i view G+ as eventually winning the B2B and B2C page war (just one example).

    i view FB as a tool. but i finally got my client I run the page for to

    ask her customers how many come from social media. and it wound up only 20%. so while FB is a useful tool remember most of your business is found elsewhere.

    • ginidietrich

      @HowieSPM Didn’t I shoo you away from here in my second sentence??

  • skypulsemedia

    @bdorman264 @ginidietrich spin sucks is sucking on Opera android browser made it really hard to comment. #mobilesucksforwork

  • Since you asked…I HATE THE TIMELINE. Yes, it is convoluted, cluttered and chaotic.

    • ginidietrich

      @TheJackB Really?? I love it. It’s so much fun to go back and see what you were doing two years ago.

      • @ginidietrich@TheJackB I also love the timeline, though I’m not sure why you would want to go back and see what you were doing two years ago, unless it’s to see how empty and meaningless your life was before you met me…

        • @KenMueller@ginidietrich I have a blog that tells me what I have been doing for the past 20 years.

          But the timeline drives me crazy because it feels noisy to me. It doesn’t come across as being calm and intuitive

        • @TheJackB@ginidietrich See, I had the exact opposite reaction. At the top there might be a bit of noise based on the variety of things you are doing at this moment (plus, many of us are more active on FB than we were a few years back), but once you scroll down, there is a definite flow and pattern.

        • ginidietrich

          @TheJackB Even though we disagree, you remain one of my favorite people.

        • @KenMueller@ginidietrich It might make more sense to me if I spent more time messing around with it, but it just feels like nails on a chalkboard to me.

          I’ll try to take a second look.

        • @ginidietrich Now what can I say to that. My daughter does stuff like that. Right after I say no she says something like, “I love you daddy” and damn if that doesn’t melt a little of the ice…

        • ginidietrich

          @TheJackB LOL!! Sounds like she knows EXACTLY what she’s doing!

        • @ginidietrich There is no doubt that she does, but she hasn’t quite figured out that having grown up with ten thousand sisters I know all of the tricks. They don’t always work….really.

        • ginidietrich

          @TheJackB Only ten thousand??

        • ginidietrich

          @KenMueller Oh Ken. Of course, you’re right. My life WAS empty without you in it.

        • @ginidietrich It felt/feels like it. Every one of my sisters had a bunch of friends who adopted me as their big brother. Got more than a few calls asking me to help them move and or listen to their man problems.

        • ginidietrich

          @TheJackB How many sisters do you have? I have four brothers so the opposite effect.

        • @ginidietrich Four and they are all crazy. Did I mention that they love it when I describe them like that. 😉

        • ginidietrich

          @TheJackB Oh I’ll bet. I’d love it if my brothers described me as crazy.

        • @ginidietrich Years of experience has demonstrated that one of the best ways to get a woman’s attention is to:

          1) Tell her to relax.

          2) Call or describe her as being crazy/hysterical.

          3) Ignore her.

          Granted these are not designed to garner a favorable or loving response but I am a big brother and am speaking in said role.

          Back in the day those sisters of mine used to scream…Got me in trouble more than once, but how else does a brother show his love. 😉

        • ginidietrich

          @TheJackB Tell her to relax. HAHAHAHAH!!!! You are so right. LOL!

        • @TheJackB@ginidietrich Jack, you forgot “compliment her on her outfit” and then she’ll immediately start questioning the outfit, because there’s no way you have decent fashion sense.

        • @KenMueller@ginidietrich Ken, very true. Don’t forget to look her up and down and then pause before you speak.

        • @TheJackB@ginidietrich I always pause BEFORE I speak. And then I automatically flinch AFTER I speak. Force of habit.

      • @ginidietrich@TheJackB Unless you weren’t going to class and your friends call you out on it….hahaha

    • John_Trader1

      @TheJackB I agree with you – it is cluttered, even though I changed over myself and don’t have any regrets. I suspect that our reactions have something to do with us being creatures of habit too.

      • @John_Trader1 I don’t doubt the creature of habit bit at all. It certainly describes part of me.

    • @TheJackB I hated it at first but quickly learned to appreciate it…

  • Regarding #1, I don’t believe it’s absolutely necessary to go the paid ads/sponsored stories route. (I’m not a big proponent of those anyways. I think it detracts from the ultimate purpose of social media utilization and that, while you may boost your fan numbers, it doesn’t seem to correlate with engagement. But I digest…) Timeline revamps aside, I think increasing news feed appearances have more to do with Facebook’s EdgeRank algorithm and how/how OFTEN you post page content, i.e., constantly switching it up between Photos, Videos, Links, and Questions. So the argument could be made that the more creativity you put into your social strategy, the more likely your org’s page is to succeed in the “Social Sea.”

    • ginidietrich

      @jacque_PR I’m with you – not a fan of paying for stuff on social media. It does defeat the purpose, doesn’t it?

      • @ginidietrich@jacque_PR What we shouldn’t pay for fans? I wish I knew this earlier!! (hehe jk)

        • ginidietrich

          @rachaelseda Well, Rach, you have to pay for them because no one likes you.

        • @ginidietrich WHATTTT?! That’s not what they tell me…at least that’s definitely not what I pay them to say!

  • With #1, I suspect EdgeRank is becoming more complicated. The amount of “stories,” or any content shared on Facebook, has increased exponentially year after year. Think about how much stuff you aren’t seeing you’re 600+ friends do. Add in any pages you like, and it’s obvious that people and pages without a robust presence are getting lost in the mix.

    • ginidietrich

      @JayDolan Precisely!

  • AskAaronLee

    About #1: I think its forcing brands to be more engaging with their content. Its also making brands to grow their fan base organically or paid.

    I’m noticing celebrities that I have “like” months ago appearing on my timeline and I’m not seeing smaller pages.

  • Hi Gini (MIddle Eastern wifi progress ahoy!!) – welcome from afar (which is SO close to “welcome from a bar” – which would be more sociable I guess)….

    In my new gig – It’s like stepping back in time – without a skipper who really knows what he is doing. I am the self-nominated Social media champion – who got knocked out at the first round when he competed against other ‘big schools’ in the Big Leagues –

    It is great to read your updates / education. – but for me to educate others (less ‘in the know’ than our selves) – can you refer to me an earlier version of SSucks, or even go off piste (on someone else’s website). Where do you start with a new Facebook campaign (SM campaign) – what are the basics that can make the biggest diffference….

    Sorry that the first time you hear from me is with a question (so needy!) – but I have to use my internet uptime carefully!!!

    It’s about 80 degrees here this morning – a chilly winter morn!!!

  • One of the toughest things for business pages is that they can’t tag people who’ve “fanned” the page in posts. I think Facebook disallowed this in the middle of last year. So one way around that is to post an update as the page, and then post a comment as yourself (i.e. person), and tag a few people. Obviously, this should be in a non-spammy, relevant way, and it doesn’t have to be done with every single post. What this does is a) show the update in your personal timeline, which can help especially if you have way more personal friends than business fans, and b) alert the people you’ve tagged to the post.

    • John_Trader1

      @Shonali Clever.

  • ginidietrich

    @shonali Love you, lovie dove! Did you have a nice birthday?

    • shonali

      @ginidietrich I did, and I got more presents yesterday! Sorry for not replying earlier, I wasn’t feeling well yesterday.

  • I need to get caught up on all the changes with business pages. My page posts used to get a lot more attention and views than they do today. Thanks for the info!

  • etelligence

    I was lucky to be in the middle of a case study when Facebook first altered the algorithm. At first they changed the timeline so it ONLY showed people you interacted with within a certain timeframe and users had to go and adjust their settings to start seeing everyone’s posts again (you guys remember that?) Your updates will go out to users who are online at that very moment and don’t have your posts set to “show only important”, but Page posts will almost never be seen by someone who has accumulated a bunch of backlogged posts unless they have went into their settings and told Facebook to show all your page posts. I covered the disadvantages imposed on Pages vs. Profiles in my latest E-Book (it’s actually free on my website w/ subscription).

    I believe they constructed the subscribe button JUST for celebrities. Celebrities aren’t the ones buying advertising, but users do like to get their updates. It’s trying to capitalize on what users like about Twitter. Businesses aren’t allowed to have Profiles, Facebook has put a lot of thought into turning their Social Network into a Business that takes advantage of every facet of their platform. The value of the latest modifications (for Facebook) escape the average user.

  • saeedzaman

    @samramuslim u seem interested in #socialmedia am I rite?

    • samramuslim

      @saeedzaman that and PR are two areas that I am enjoying reading about these days …! Dynamic

      • saeedzaman

        @samramuslim hmm if u need more material to read I can help u out as I m MBA majoring in social media 🙂

        • Aprilf15

          @saeedzaman Now Hiring at

        • samramuslim

          @saeedzaman sure! Tag me when u find an interesting read 🙂

        • saeedzaman

          @samramuslim sure thing 🙂

  • I campaigned for re-election to the city council last year and created a Facebook page for local residents and business owners to like and follow my page updates.

    That was short lived, for I quickly recognized despite people manually clicking the like button, there was zero interaction afterwards. By way of a case study, I posted the same content to both the page and my profile — and the profile got far more interaction (comments and shares) than the page. So, I killed the page.

    I now tell residents to befriend me instead.

    I hate pages. It needs to be a well known brand to get anywhere.

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