Sponsored stories: a new way to promote your biz on Facebook

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In the UK, the average 22 year old has over 1,000 Facebook followers.

Really.

We’re not quite there in the US, but Facebook is on its way to becoming the new Internet, so businesses need to take notice.  The thing is, you can’t promote yourself on Facebook the way you promote yourself in a newspaper ad.  Facebook is a social networking site.  It works best when other people are talking about your business and promoting you, (otherwise known as “crowdsourcing” if you’re looking for more jargon).

Recently, Facebook introduced “sponsored stories.”  This allows you to take things that other people – specifically, people who have “liked” your page – are saying about you in their news feed and post it as an ad.  The ad appears in the right hand ad column of that person’s friends, so they have a higher liklihood of seeing it.

“But if the person has “liked” my page or posted about me, won’t their friends already see it?”

Er, maybe not.  According to Elyse Tager of Constant Contact, 50-70% of fans never see your content in their news feed, because it scrolls off the page into the dreaded “Older Posts” section.

Chase McMichael, of InfiniGraph.com experimented with these sponsored stories and found they yielded:

  • 46% higher clickthrough rate;
  • 20% lower cost per click; and
  • 18% lower cost per fan.

Anyway, if you’re considering taking out a Facebook ad to promote your fan page, I think these are worth a look.

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