How To Configure Your Facebook Page In Under 15 Minutes

This is Day 3 of the 30 Days to 3,000 Fans program. You can learn more about the program here.
If you are a really new user of Facebook Pages then today’s guide will be for you. If you are an advanced Facebook Page user then you may want to consider holding off until tomorrow when we’ll begin discussing the first strategy to increasing the conversion of new visitors into fans. I receive a number of emails each week from people that can’t figure out how to get their public profile set up though so I thought it would be useful to provide a basic introduction.

Step 1: Create Your Facebook Page

Creating a Facebook page is a relatively rudimentary task on Facebook. To create a public profile you can visit the Facebook public profile advertising page and click on the “Create a Page” button. Next up, you’ll be prompted with a form titled “Create New Facebook Page” as illustrated below. Select your category and enter the name of your business or public figure. Finally, you must confirm that you are authorized to create the page by entering your full name as it appears in your profile.

Step 2: Edit Basic Information

When you first arrive to your newly created public profile, there will be a link off to the right hand side which says “Edit Information”. Entering your information is important for search engine optimization (“SEO”) purposes as well as informing new visitors about your product, service, or yourself (if you are a public figure). Currently Facebook does not enable page administrators to remove this tab so I highly recommend that you take the time to fill it out with all the relevant information.

Step 3: Configure A Landing Page/Tab

When a new user visits your public profile, it’s extremely useful to explain to them what the public profile is about and why they should become a fan. The goal of the landing page is to immediately convert the user into a new fan and then engage the fan after they’ve joined. I’ve seen companies use contests for engaging the user but the vast majority of Facebook Pages have no separate landing page. The result is that the public profiles have a lower conversion of new visitors into fans.

There is one exception for public profiles that have no landing page but high conversion: companies with a high brand affinity. Oprah Winfrey or Coca-Cola can convert users without having a landing page because they have such a strong brand presence.

How To Configure Your Landing Tab

Adding a landing page is relatively simple. One requirement is that you have a basic understanding of HTML. More advanced landing pages can also be created but that will require some knowledge of the Facebook platform. I’m assuming that most people reading this section don’t have much experience with the Facebook platform so I’ll provide a quick walk through of how to get the landing page configured without anything but one application and a little bit of HTML.

Install the “Static FBML” Application
The first step to configuring a landing page is to install the Static FBML application to your public profile application. After you visit the Static FBML application about page you can install the application by clicking “Add to Page”. You will then be prompted to select the public profile that you’d like to install to and click on the button which says “Add Static FBML”.

Edit Your Landing Tab
After you installed the “Static FBML” application to your public profile, you should be redirected back to your page. If you weren’t just go back to your Facebook Page. Click on “Edit Page” on the left hand side. There will be a number of applications installed by default but you want to edit the box which says “FBML – FBML”. Next you’ll be presented a page from which you can edit the title and content within your custom tab.

Currently, Facebook page tab titles are limited to 14 characters including spaces. Anything beyond that will result in your title being appended to 11 characters followed by “…” Using HTML, modify the FBML box. To include Facebook relevant information, you can use any of the tags included on the FBML wiki page. If you are extremely proficient with HTML, you may note that some tags are not allowed. For those tags that don’t work properly, you’ll need to substitute them with FBML tags as defined on the FBML Wiki page.

Add the New Landing Page As A Tab
Once you’ve properly configured the new tab, you’ll want to add it as a default tab. If you haven’t added any tabs yet, it will immediately show up as one of your default tabs. If it doesn’t, simply click on the double arrows and select your custom tab as pictured in the photo to the right. When you select the new tab it will replace the tab which is currently furthest to the right. The other thing you’ll want to configure is for your new landing page to show up as the default tab when a new visitor first comes to your public profile. To do this click on the “Wall” tab and select “Settings”. Then next to the area where it says “Default Landing Tab for Everyone Else:” select the tab that you’d like to show up by default when a new visitor comes to your public profile.

That’s it! Now your custom landing tab has been configured.

Step 4: Add Additional Applications

Other applications make it possible to expand the functionality of your Facebook Page. The more features you can add that engage the user, the better. While you don’t want to add 20 applications, it often makes sense to add a few applications that will engage your visitors. The photos, discussions, and reviews tabs are added by default. Make sure that any tab that you have is actually being used. For example, there’s no point in having a discussions tab if you aren’t encouraging visitors to participate in ongoing conversations.

While Facebook doesn’t currently list the applications available for Facebook pages, there are a number of third parties that provide sets of applications. Involver is one company that provides a number of applications that let you import and RSS feed, publish your Twitter status, easily create polls, share files, and more. If you want to learn more, head on over to the Involver application gallery. Also check out the promotions application provided by Wildfire Interactive.

Step 5: Start Inviting Friends

Once you’ve finished adding your applications and customizing your public profile, all you need to do is invite people to get started. One thing that I highly recommend is targeting nodes of individuals. If there is a tightly connected network of individuals among your friends, invite each of them on the same day. This way you increase the likelihood of your newly created Facebook Page becoming a recommended page.

Daily Task

I think it’s pretty obvious what your daily task is at this point! Get your Facebook Page up and running using the steps outlined above. Also, as some of you might have noticed I left one task out from this process. I’ll be going into more depth about the missing step tomorrow!

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