Brands and agencies often struggle to determine the best promotion to run; it’s a common practice to invest non-trivial amounts of their budgets into tactics like building Facebook applications or games that, more often than not, don’t work. If the application lacks appeal, the performance of ads driven to the app will also be affected by higher costs of advertising.

What most people don’t know or fully understand is that the cost-effectiveness of a Facebook click is highly dependent on the level of engagement of your ad—which stems from the promotion that you are advertising.

At Ampush, we’ve found that one of the most effective methods for brands to elicit massive fan growth is a simple tactical promotion that is often underestimated and underutilized (results first, tactic below).

Our tests with this tactic produced the following results on a fan page that began with a modest number of followers:

–          Massive Increase in Like Volume Overnight: in one day, we captured 4x the number of new fans normally generated with one month of advertising.

–          50% Lower Costs per Like: We increased click to like conversion by 74% and decreased CPCs by 15%. Costs per like were cut in half.

–          Spikes in Reach and Brand Exposure: During the promotion, viral stories seen reached 200,000- 400,000 viewers in a single day. One in every 5 users who saw a viral story about the promotion liked the page.

facebook ad reach

–          Exponential Fan Growth: We nearly doubled the fan count after each of our three promotions. The size of the fan page is comfortably into 6 figures.

fb campaign likes

So what was this tactic?

The answer is: A well-tracked and executed free sample campaign.

Often, there is hesitation to offer free samples because of the additional costs of providing samples, but the staggering benefits in volume, speed to generate likes, and actual cost savings (due to improved ad effectiveness) prove to be much more affordable than running advertising with no promotion or a promotion where few win.

Here is our process for running an effective promotion for our clients:

1. Decide upon a low-cost sample per person, the total number to give away, and how it will be redeemed.

2. Integrate a custom tab on the Facebook page to process the sample redemption and track viral activity.

free sample ad tracking

3. Always pair the promotion with advertising through a variety of Facebook ad types.

fb free sample ad

4. Track, measure, and analyze ad and page activity, redemptions, and virality.

5. Expect an influx of comments on the fan page. Actively manage conversations to promote positive brand excitement.

6. Advertise regularity of giveaways to consistently accrue low-cost fans to the page.

7. Re-market to those who redeemed the free sample to promote in-store purchases.

If you manage a Facebook page and haven’t tried a free sample promotion, what are you waiting for?

Irene Shih

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  1. Marketing Day: September 18, 2012 September 18th, 2012

    […] A Well-Kept Secret for Growing Brand Fan Pages Overnight, fbppc.com […]

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Irene Shih
Irene Shih is Director of Media (Brands) at Ampush, a technology-driven online marketing company in San Francisco.