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How The New Facebook “Places” Feature Can Be Used As A Marketing Tool

Ok, you get it—Facebook is the way to go for social marketing.  While you’ve been advised to create a fan page to lure in customers and promote your business, truth of the matter is you just don’t have the time to keep it up. But do not fret. Thanks to a relatively new Facebook feature you can optimize your social marketing without having to update a single status.How The Facebook Places Feature Can Improve Your Marketing

The “places” feature, which was activated late August, is designed to let customers share their real-time location with their Facebook friends.  Similar to the ever popular Foursquare and Yelp, when Facebook users access the application via their smart phone, they will be able “check-in” in at certain locations and businesses. This is how it can benefit your business:  If a Facebook user wants their “friends” to know that he or she is dining at the new glamorous restaurant you just opened up last week for example, he or she will first access the” places” feature using the Facebook’s smart phone site touch.facebook.com or  iPhone application. Once this is done, the customer will see a list of businesses that are close in proximity. He or she can either simply choose the location that matches or add it manually. Once the customer “checks -in,” their location (and comment about the location if they choose to leave one) will immediately be posted not only on their profile page, but their friend’s news-feeds as well.  So in a way, by “checking-in” the customer is doing all the work and indirectly doubling your advertisement because the customer is helping you expand your audience reach. This is because with a fan page, you can only advertise to “fans” –meaning the people who “like” your page. However, because customers’ locations are automatically displayed on their friend’s news-feeds, you are essentially getting to promote your business to people who are not fans of your page.

In addition, customers are able to “tag” their friends and check them in as well—which can essentially triple or quadruple your advertising potential.  This is because when a customer tags friends, the location not only is displayed on his or her friends’ news-feeds, but now it will also be displayed on the tagged person’s friends’ news-feeds as well. Sound confusing? For better clarification, if customer A has 300 friends and tags customer B who has 300 friends, your businesses’ name (including the address and how good it is) will be seen potentially by 600 people.

By-line:

This guest post is contributed by Alvina Lopez, who writes on the topics of accredited online schools.  She welcomes your comments at her email Id: alvina.lopez @gmail.com.

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