If you own a business (and I do consider a website or blog a business) then you most likely have either heard about the benefits of owning a fan page and using it to drive traffic to your website, attract opt ins, interact with likeminded people, and so much more. Or you are looking into it as a future investment for your business website or your blog,  I thought I’d share various methods  to assist you.

For the record, Facebook is the second highest traffic website with 135 million unique visitors each month, if you are able to siphon off even a small portion of that to your website or blog I’m sure you’d be happy as traffic is truly the lifeblood of a blog, and without it things can be very lonely indeed.

Here are the various methods.

a)      Add the Facebook widget right into the center of your blog, where people can see that

b)      Create a fan page on Facebook, brand it and link back to your website

c)      There is something to be said for social proof, nobody likes to be the first person to join a page that has no other members so get your friends and colleagues to join

d)      Allow members to like a fan page directly from a website.

e)      Incorporate at least 3 major points of contact into all correspondence in the signature section of your emails. Now whenever you send an email out there is your Website, Twitter account, and Fan page listed at the bottom where curious people can click over and check things out, and hopefully add themselves to your network. Investigate creating and using a digital signature that has your picture and a brief overview of who you are.

3.       Write blog posts occasionally with blatant links to your fan page knowing that a few people will read the post, find value and add themselves to your network.   http://www.facebook.com/wsioms (hint, hint, nudge, nudge…) lol

4.       Run a contest and I gave away  something that has a value of around R500.00 for the winners.

5.       Use a free service like www.socialoomph.com and set up a direct message that says hello,  point your new followers to your fan page. As you can imagine this will assist to cut the time taken to answer each new follower.

a)      Start a Twitter account and actively grow your Twitter community.   Sent out a series of email to your database inviting people to join you. It’s important to note that it works really well if you have a few different messages and rotate them as your needs change. Point to your fan page one month, and free e-book offer the next. This is one tip I’d implement if I were you!

6.       Another hidden gem that I’d highly recommend you take advantage of is www.Twiends.com This is a social growing community that connects Twitter users, Facebook pages, and YouTube enthusiasts. You used to be able to use them to drive traffic to your blog or website also, but they’ve been slapped by Google recently and taken the feature offline until further notice. This one is powerful, so head over, tell them I sent you, and start using them to add fans and followers to your social network!

7.       Try finding fan pages that are in your niche, and liking them, mention to the owner that you too are working hard at growing a fan page community, and ask if they’d reciprocate. Most will, but don’t be upset if they don’t. Often they just might be busy with building a business and not have time to respond to every request made of them.

8.        ‘Like’ pages that create videos and post them on the page with the intention of helping people toward furthering a goal. The page that comes to mind is Get 10,000 fans that ironically has close to 25,000 at the time of this writing.

9.       Make sure you interact with the current members of your page, and post quality information for them daily. Also develop a set of rules for members who wish to post links on your wall. There are unfortunately millions of spammers who target large fan pages with no other goal but to spam the internet with links to their crappy offers or affiliate pages. I personally remove the links within minutes usually, and ban the user that spammed it in the first place.

10.   If you have an email list of subscribers that you’ve built up via your blog them make a point of asking them to also head over and like your fan page. Perhaps you can even find some way of rewarding the ones that do as a way of saying thank you. These people are already fans of your blog so it usually isn’t too hard to convince them to also “like” your fan page as a way of showing their support.