Note: The screen captures in this post were taken on June 28, 2009. Functionality could change in the future and things will look and behave differently.
Facebook Fan Pages
In the previous post, Do I Need a Facebook Fan Page, we look at some reasons why you might want to have a fan page.
Another difference between profiles and pages I forgot to mention: there is a limit to the number of friends you can have on a regular profile. It’s somewhere around 5000. On the other hand, there is no limit on the number of fans you can have for your page.
Sounds good to me, thinking big I figure I’ll have well over 5000 fans some day.
So on to some tips on how to create/use fan pages.
How To Create a Fan Page
Creating a fan page is pretty easy, use this link: Create Fan Page.
You’ll end up at a screen that looks like this:
I recommend selecting the Artist, Band or Public Figure radio button (if that is what you are) and then selecting the choice that fits you best from the drop down.
What difference does it make which radio button you select? It determines what information appears in the info tab of your page (and hence in the information box in the sidebar for your page). You can play around with different choices to find the type of page that best suits the information you want to provide.
Add Basic Information
After you make your selections facebook takes you to your new fan page and tells you what to do:
1) Add your photo – Click on the big question mark and upload the image you want to use for this page. You can change it any time you like.
2) Click the Edit Information link to add the basic information about your page.
3) Write something about what this page is about.
Don’t assume everyone knows what your fan page is about because they know you.
Remember, fan pages are public, like most pages on the internet, and people that know nothing about you are likely to find this page. Give them enough information so they don’t have to think too hard to figure out what you are about.
Publish Your Fan Page
Up to this point your page is not published. This means noone but you can see it.
Once you have the basic info as you’d like it, you are ready to publish your page. Just click the red link at the top of your page to make it public:
You’ll get a brief notice that your page is now published and then you are live and ready for content.
Click to the wall tab and start adding updates, links and photos just like you would with your profile.
Promoting Your Fan Page
There are several ways to promote your fan page:
1) Use previously existing communication channels – email, twitter, your facebook profile (put a link to the fan page in one of your status updates), etc.
2) Promote with a paid facebook ad. Some of those fun ads we see in our profiles are from people promoting their fan pages. You can do it also.
Use the link underneath your newly uploaded picture to do this. I’ve not done this so other than the info you can find on facebook (of which there is plenty) I have no additional input.
3) Suggest your fan page to your friends. In the image above note the “more” link – there is good stuff here so click it to reveal the following:
Click the suggest to friends link and then select the friends you’d like to send a suggestion to. Facebook is most helpful here and they don’t allow you to select friends that are already fans, or that have outstanding page suggestions from you.
There appears to be no limit on how many friends you can select in this view from what I can tell, the only drawback is you have to click on each person one at a time.
How to Access from your Facebook Profile
You have a fan page, you have fans and things are great but how the heck do you find your fan page from your profile? Good question because it’s not obvious.
In the very lower left hand corner of facebook (no matter what page you are on) you will see something like this:
The thing circled is the ads and pages application bookmark (you can hover your mouse over these icons and facebook will tell you what they are). This is how you get to your fan page from anywhere. It is also how you can see the stats for your fan page.
(If you don’t have this icon I explain later how to create it so don’t panic!)
Just click that icon and this page appears (well with your fan pages in it – not mine):
A few notable things about this page:
1) The drop down lets you look at different statistics for your pages. If you have multiple pages you will have a different colored line for each one.
2) The link at the top will take you to a page that shows you all of your pages and some things you can do with the pages (like edit, advertise and delete them).
3) The links at the bottom will take you to the individual pages in a single click. So in 2 clicks from any place in facebook you can get to your fan pages.
There is no link from your regular profile to your fan page at this time. Nor is there a link back to your profile from your page. To facebook they are distinct things. To resolve this I put a link to my fanpage in my profile (on the info tab there is a place to list websites – I added in my fan pages).
What is the URL of your fan page?
The above comment about adding my fanpage to my profile assumed I knew the URL for my fan page. It’s not always obvious or easy to find but here’s how to figure it out.
1) Go to your fanpage.
2) In your browser’s address bar copy the URL that you see up there. Sometimes mine says stuff like:
3) Remove everything in between http://www.facebook.com/ and /pages/your-page-name/A-Big-Number – this is your URL.
Yours will be
Your-Page-Name is the name of your page
Your-Big-Number is the big number that facebook put on your page.
For those of you with over 1000 fans you can create a username for your fanpage (thereby creating a simple URL: http://facebook.com/username) Do this by clicking here: Facebook Username . Those of us still on our way to 100fans0 have to wait a bit longer.
Everyone can do this now for their regular profile – if you haven’t yet, click on that link and pick a username for you profile.
How to bookmark the Ads and Pages Application
If you don’t have the ads and pages icon I mentioned above, here’s how to make that appear (and it’s how to bookmark any application which will then appear in that bar at the bottom so if you have other applications you like to use but find it hard to find them – bookmark them also):
1) Click on applications in the lower left hand corner to get this menu::
2) Click on Edit Applications
3) In the drop down menu click around on different pages until you find the ads and pages application listed. It’ll be somewhere. And it’ll be in a different place for everyone depending on what permissions you’ve given the application.
4) Once you find ads and pages – click on edit settings:
5) In the popup, on the bookmark tab click the checkbox to bookmark this application and then click ‘okay’.
Refresh your browser (probably with F5) and the icon should appear. These icons can be dragged around and put in any order you’d like. They are pretty handy for getting to applications you use a lot.
This is hopefully enough to get you started with fan pages. If you have questions please leave them in the comments and I’ll answer them here or in a future post.
I’ve gotten some questions via email that I’ll here also but right now it’s back to the studio as this post is longer than I anticipated and I’ve got a deadline.
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Thinking Big about Art