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How to Use Facebook to Promote Your Blog

Posted By Darren Rowse 17th of January 2009 Blog Promotion, Social Media 0 Comments

In this guest post, Steve Schwartz, a professional LSAT tutor, discusses how he has used Facebook to promote his Ace the LSAT blog and create a community of readers.

Your blog’s readers probably have Facebook profiles already, and making your own Facebook profile is easy enough. Aside from allowing you to create a profile and connect with your friends from elementary school, Facebook has several features that can connect your blog readers and help you find new ones.

Create a Facebook Group

Your readers have a common interest – your blog’s subject. My readers are preparing for the Law School Admissions Test (LSAT). Maybe yours are interested in knitting, running, or making money online. Just as they have subscribed to your blog, they will join your Facebook group.

At the beginning of December 2008, I created the 2009 LSAT Study / Discussion Facebook Group. Someone else had created a 2008 LSAT Group, and I wanted to be the person to create the 2009 group, so I started early. When someone is searching Facebook for an LSAT group to join this year, they’ll see my group has over 100 members, but someone else’s group on the same topic only has 3, guess which group they’ll join.

Note: I didn’t make the group about my blog directly – I made it broader. Why? So people searching on Facebook for LSAT-related groups would feel welcome to join. If they thought it was limited to my blog’s readers, the prospective member might not even visit the group page, which means he/she would never see the link to my blog.

So I created a group and placed a prominent link to my blog on the top, but it only had one member – me. Not very impressive, right? I didn’t want my readers to think my group and blog were unpopular, so I immediately invited all of my Facebook friends to join the group. Some of my Facebook friends were already planning to take the LSAT, so inviting them to join my new Facebook group had two additional benefits:

1. It informed them of my blog if they didn’t know about it already.

2. Facebook’s news feed told all their friends, making the group a viral marketing mechanism for the blog..

How Readers Use the Facebook Group

Of course, the Facebook group is more than a viral marketing mechanism too. It helps your readers to connect with each other in a way comments don’t. While comments are generally responses to your postings, Facebook’s discussion boards allow direct interaction between readers. My readers have used the Facebook group to find LSAT study partners and form study groups by posting messages on the discussion board and the Wall. How did I tell my readers about the Facebook Group? I posted a link to it on the side of my blog, and I made a brief blog post about it for those who hadn’t noticed the link.

Marketing Your Facebook Group, and Your Blog, in Other Facebook Groups

Search Facebook for groups on your topic and related ones. In each of these groups, you can post a message on the group Wall or discussion board, or you can use the Post a Link feature to notify the group’s members of your group and your blog. Warning: don’t do all three in the same group at the same time – it’s overkill and may get you banned from the group. By promoting your Facebook group at first, instead of promoting your blog, you decrease the likelihood that the group administrator will remove your message.

After doing all of this, Facebook became one of my biggest sources of traffic, and I don’t even have to do much to keep the Facebook traffic coming. In order to get more readers, you need to have a presence where they are. For me and for many bloggers these days, our present and future readers spend their time in social networking sites.

What about you? Have you used Facebook or other social networking sites to promote your blog? Have you found it to be effective?

Bio: Steve Schwartz is a professional LSAT tutor living in New York City. He updates his Ace the LSAT blog every week with free LSAT tips and tricks.

About Darren Rowse
Darren Rowse is the founder and editor of ProBlogger Blog Tips and Digital Photography School. Learn more about him here and connect with him on Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn.
  1. Not Facebook. But Tweeter, yes. Facebook perhaps that’s something for the future.

  2. Oops. Meant Twitter. Evidently not that big of a twitter fan either.

  3. Thanks for the post Steve,
    Part of the business plan for my blog has been to use Facebook but I’ve been unsure how to do it effectively. Your post has given me some good ideas.

  4. great post! personally i’ve found a facebook fanpage of your blog/site is more effective than a group (here’s mine). there are more options of to interact with your fans then there are “members” of a group. you can also add custom blocks of info–be it text, video, products, or whatever–by using the ftml application.

    it also seems to me that more people are apt to become “fans” of something than become a “member” of something. Maybe it’s a fear of commitment. lol.

  5. Makes sense. I’ve syndicated my content to my profile from my blog so far, and it’s done some good but very little. Actually forming a group is doable and not a huge time commitment.

  6. Another option is to use the NetworkedBlogs app on Facebook. It’s like groups, but it’s designed for blogs. It pulls your blog feed into Facebook and allows your readers to follow your posts inside Facebook.

  7. There is an application I use on Facebook to network with other blogs.


    And of course when you network with other blogs who share your same interests, you also connect with their readers!

  8. Hmm. I’ve certainly found that Facebook is a good marketing tool. I’d be a little hesitant to target LSAT takers, though… once they’ve gotten a decent score on the LSAT, there’s no need for them to return… unless, of course, Steve launches a series of “surviving law school” courses. Having been through law school, I know that passing the LSAT is ultimately the least of a law student’s worries…

  9. I wish I had started using FB earlier :)

  10. Just wanted to say hello and thank everybody for their feedback so far. I’m glad you’re all finding it helpful. If you have any questions or comments on aspects of Facebook I did not discuss, please leave a comment and I will do my best to respond.

    Lee, while it’s true that LSAT takers don’t need to return once they’ve gotten a decent score, many LSAT-takers take it more than once. Others study for it over the course of several months. However, I will keep your “surviving law school” course idea in mind. Thanks!

  11. We have a Facebook Page specific to our blog which has performed better than the non-branded Facebook group that we created.

  12. Aww great!! I started my facebook account a week ago. Coming across this post is so perfect. Awesome! However, I found the email notifications of FB will eventually “feel” like spam, you better check your setting of notifications there.

  13. Facebook can be a great way to find potential readers. I have found that the more you interact with other friends that share your same interests…the greater payoffs you have.

    I don’t like the recent trend of twitter updates hitting your facebook status updates. Those that twitter a lot seem to clog up facebook updates more.

    Thanks for the post…it gives me some techniques I haven’t tried yet.

  14. Good post…

    I have used facebook to promote my blog.

    Facebook is my primary traffic driver… according to google analytics.

    It’s awesome when you have several thousand people in groups you admin and you get to connect @ the same time!


    David King

  15. Great insights on Facebook. I created a group called Busy Women’s “Dream Body” Fitness Connection. Trying to grow it right now.

    I like the tips here.

    Donovan “Dfitnessguy” Owens

  16. this is what i’m doing:

    1. use facebook notes to auto import post from blog
    2. use twitterfeed and twitter application at facebook to auto update new blog post to facebook status
    3. use networked blog application at facebook, and put widget at blog, so blog reader can join from blog
    4. comment to other ppl notes
    5. share other ppl blog using google reader and use google reader import features from facebook profile.

    p/s: i don’t have good blog content, still content is the most important thing to gain reader quantity and quality.

  17. forgot 1 thing..

    you can use facebook connect in blog comment function. comment activity can be update direct to facebook.


  18. Interesting idea–I like it. People seem to be using Facebook like any other social networking site nowadays, which makes me, a recent college graduate, somewhat uncomfortable; the site seems to have strayed so far away from its intended purpose. (I remember the excitement when my college got Facebook–back before anyone and everyone was allowed to join!) This seems much more authentic and genuinely helpful than making a profile to promote yourself and “friending” anyone who asks, regardless of whether you even have any idea who they are. (That’s another thing; when friending someone Facebook used to have an option for “I don’t know this person,” and when you clicked it the site would say “then why are you friending them?” and take away the option to add friend. But I’m going on a tangent!) Anyway, I hope people use this method and have success!

  19. Steve,

    This is really great information. I wasn’t really sure how to use groups, but this detailed post is a GREAT starting point!

    Thanks a lot!

    Miss Gisele B.

  20. I signed up for Face Book in November, but I still don’t understand how it works. I guess I should get my 19yo son to start researching some of this for me. LOL.

  21. I’ve started a few facebook groups in the past, but none of them ever gained anymore members than myself.

    I guess I should try again, now that I’m doing so well blogging. :)

  22. Great post. I am a geek with a professional interest in legal technology and a passion about genealogy. I started a Facebook group called Genea-Bloggers for others who blog about family history and genealogy (http://www.facebook.com/group.php?gid=30305424880). I can’t believe that we are now over 300 members and have tons of events, wall posts, discussion posts etc.

    However, I want to point out one advantage of Facebook Fan pages: they can be accessed by even non-Facebook members and they are indexed in Google and other search engines whereas Facebook Group pages are not.

    But I find Facebook Groups to be much more viral in terms of their marketing capabilites. A combination of both is ideal.

  23. Yes, facebook can be effective to promote your blog. Apart from facebook groups you can also add the NetworkedBlogs (formerly: Blog Networks) application to your profile.

    You can then invite people to join your network. It will give you the possibility to add a widget to your blog too. And in your profile it will display a mini-feed and give you the possibility to emphasize on selected content and offer you a blog wall too. Visitors are also able to rate your blog there.

    And of course you can become a fan of other blogs with it too.

    I think you just gave me an idea for a blogpost. Thanks! ;-)

  24. Good post.One thing that people often forget is that Facebook is a social media site, not a place where you can advertise anything directly.Take an interest in others and what they have to say.Do not make the mistake of sending people information about your business or you will be quickly rejected by everyone.By showing people that you care about what they have to say,they will listen to you as well.

  25. Great article and very easy to implement. I had already done this on FriendFeed but for some reason it hadn’t occurred to me to do the same on Facebook. Not sure I knew it was possible, so thanks for the tip.

    Here’s my new group all about languages, if you’re on Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/group.php?gid=61250615154

  26. Great insights. I’ve begun to implement them already and look forward to the results. I’m finding that with alot of these social networking sight, the potential uses are not obvious. Informative posts like yours help in a big way.

  27. This is very timely! I created a facebook group for my website weeks ago at the urging of friends, having no real idea of what I was going to do with it or how to best utilize it.

    Now I have a few hundred members there versus a few thousand subscribers and a over a million readers each month and was wondering how to bring it all together to benefit me.

    This baby is getting printed out and attacked with a highlighter today :)
    Christy :)

  28. I think a lot of people are looking for ways to leverage Facebook. This idea seems like a good approach. Thanks for the post!

    – Dave

  29. One thing I noticed about the fan pages is that they will generate free “ads” for your friends. I was watching my wife surf facebook and I saw an ad for my site that I created a fan page for. I was not running any paid ads at the time, so I panicked that my campaigns had been reactived, but then I noticed the text said something like “one of your friends is a fan of ….” So basically, you’re getting free advertising within your network, and the more people who are fans of your site via the fan pages make this a viral effect.

  30. Ha, it’d been so long since I commented I still have my info from the “pitch your site” article a while back.

  31. signing up for Facebook…

    Thanks for the tip! ^_^

  32. “We have a Facebook Page specific to our blog which has performed better than the non-branded Facebook group that we created.”

    EXACTLY. I can’t believe someone I (considered) to be such a blogging expert just published a post promoting groups over pages.


    Any experience with pages vs. groups would tell one that pages offer much more branding in the areas of individual photo albums (instead of one giant album that can’t be categorized), the ability to target updates, and best of all – watered-down analytics about the demographics of your fan base and the popularity of your content.

    Very disappointing post.

  33. Not to mention, FB can import your blog feed to your page.

  34. When I’m posting new photos on my blog that I think my Facebook friends might be interested in, I let them know in my status update, including a link to the blog.

  35. Again, thanks to everyone for the comments and feedback.

    To Isaac (re: email notifications / messages): Yes, it’s very important to make sure that group members don’t receive email notifications (or messages from you through the “Message All” feature). Just because they signed up for the group does not mean you have their permission to send them messages. Be happy that they joined your group in the first place, and be satisfied with the fact that they will probably see the links to your blog on the Group description.

    To Lisa (and others re: Facebook Pages): I considered using and discussing Pages. There are a few reasons I didn’t:

    1. I’m under the impression that the majority of ProBlogger readers are small DIYers who have not yet made it to the big leagues. As such, Pages might have less viral marketing capability.

    2. For the smaller folks out there, a non-branded Facebook group may offer greater opportunity because it is more subtle.

    People find my blog through Facebook precisely because they were not looking for it. I suspect that fewer individuals search for Pages than search for Groups. Perhaps I should have addressed this in the article – I just wanted to keep the article short. There isn’t any reason not to make both a Page and a Group for your blog.

    Hope this clears things up a bit.

  36. Thanks for post, very useful, but I am just wondering if I have enough time to take care of a group on Facebook.

  37. I like using Fb to promote other’s blogs and am surprised your use of the “Share This” widget does not appear to have a button link to Facebook.

  38. Guillaume, all I do is check in every few days and make sure that no one is spamming the group’s wall or discussion board. It’s easier to take care of a group than you’d think!

  39. Great advice!

    I actually have recently started using Facebook to help promote my blog. Basically, I copy a short excerpt of my blog posts to the “Notes” area in my profile, then add a link to the blog post.

    It is kinda limiting because my Facebook friends are the only one who can view my notes.

    I’m gonna try the Facebook group idea – it will have much further reach!


  40. Nice post there Darren. I always wondered how you could earn via facebook but now i know.

  41. I have shared links to my blog on facebook and have brought some traffic and one day I had almost 90 vistors. Think it depended on my topic. Some of my facebook friends are co-workers of mine. And I have heard some postive feedback from them.

    I never thought of starting a group. I will get on that. But I am struggling with coming up with a group name?


  42. I loved this post. It made the light bulbs go of in my head.

    I have read here and on other blogs about the importance of social media networks, but I was not sure of how to go about leveraging my Facebook presence. Now I know. Your post was extremely helpful.


  43. Great idea! I considered making a facebook group or fan page for my blog but never bothered. Reading this article made me realize that people may find my blog by searching for groups where that is unlikely to happen through my profile page.

    Thanks for the ideas!

  44. Nice post Darre, recently i tried to promote my blog on face book, really it works, if the content makes people worth then definitely promoting methods also worth.

  45. Actually by inserting my blog in “my notes” on Facebook allowed my friends to read my daily financial comments.
    After a while, friends where commenting my daily notes.
    It allowed me to gain more traffic since they ended up recommending my blog to their friends.

  46. Useful tips as I’m somewhat Facebook addict, I’m going to create a Facebook group :))))) But another way to get blog traffic to your blog is by updating my Facebook Status (like in twitter) I have experienced a good number of visitors coming from that Status link…

  47. I love social media….great strategy to make wide network and also free promtion……thanks for nice articles

  48. Thanx a lot for this post! I have a personal Facebook profile but didn’t know how to start more reasonable.
    As for company profile – can suggested methods be suitable for company service promoting?

    Found this article very useful and if you don’t mind – translated it to Russian, to make it more widespread in network (translation contains all links to you,this article and you your site, as well all internal article links). If you object, tell me.

  49. good article, we have a group and a facebook page – not sure which I prefer as both have different applications and offer an opportunity to present different kinds of information. As we market 2 types of people – Companies and job seekers – I have been trying to keep FB for job seekers and blog for companies… not sure if this is the right way about it.

    I have to say it has been a struggle getting fans and new members to both & still struggling so will try a few of your tips.

    Final note – i find that the RSS feeders have never really worked very well on FB does anyone have any ideas?

  50. Good information, and the ‘leeds’ from facebook are all for free. In google analytics I am starting to get more visits to my dating site, Wow! Instead of paying for ppc advertising you can use facebook!

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