Follow Me on Facebook

Facebook has added a new subscribers feature to personal profiles that indeed indicates they are keeping a close eye on Google+ and Twitter – and borrowing a few ideas as well.

One of the advantages of strengths of Facebook is that it is personal.

Business is now personal. You can no longer separate your business and personal lives.  Actually, you can, but its not something that one would recommend in a business environment that is becoming increasingly social.

On Facebook you could previously only share with friends – your inner circle. However, what if you happen to have something to say that might appeal to a larger audience – such as friends of friends?

For example, I’m looking to fill a few more seats at my 2011 Social Media Summit – a two-day event designed for non-technical small businesses.

Naturally, I’m promoting it through the usual channels.  However, if only I could share the favorable commentary from my trusted Facebook friends with the general public?  Now you can.

This is one reason why I have decided to allow others to subscribe to my personal Facebook profile.  It allows others to learn more about you without having to get too friendly just yet.

The point is you can use Facebook subscriptions to virtually rub shoulders with those that you want to get to know better – just as you would in real life.

Setting Up Facebook Subscriptions

The process for providing others the option to subscribe to your Facebook newsfeed is simple – just go here and set it up.

Then go to Facebook privacy settings and determine what you wish to share publicly – as that is all your subscribers will see.  Then choose if you want to close commenting to subscribers or allow friends of friends to comment.  Presently those are the only two options.

When you subscribe to personal Facebook profiles you will be notified of your mutual friends. Having mutual friends with Robert Scoble enables me to comment on what he shares with the public.

On my professional Facebook Page I allow anyone to comment, and it is rare that I have to delete something.  For that reason, I’ve chosen to allows friends of friend subscribers to comment on my personal page.

You’ll have to decide what works for you.

How Facebook Subscribers Can Work

If you are a blogger you know that hundreds (sometimes thousands) of people view your blog posts in a given day. Yet, only a very small portion of them will make comments.

Comments are social networking gold!  They help you learn more about your community, and they also become social proof that helps you to grow that community.

If you want to attract new followers and friends that could potentially become customers or business partners, you have to leave a few doors open so that you can get to know them better.

That’s how I see this.  Build trust first and let business become a potential by-product of those relationships.

Incidentally, while we are all limited to 5,000 Facebook friends, there is no limit to the number of subscribers we can have.

For clarity, all of your Facebook friends are already subscribers of whatever you choose to share with them (via the privacy settings).

Your other subscribers only have access to what you choose to share publicly.

What This Means for Small Businesses

The most common questions I get related to social media in general relates to personal vs professional profiles on the social web.  My contention is that being personal is good for your business.

My rationale for this is that most small businesses are doing good things that support their local communities. This attracts business because it gives prospects a reason to choose you over your national competitors.

Many of us have been patiently waiting a long time for Facebook to give us the opportunity to be more personal and transparent with the broader communities we serve.

That time has arrived and its now.  When you consider that online search is rapidly moving towards social – taking advantage of Facebook subscriptions is a step in the right direction.

One last thing, because your personal profiles are inside Facebook, the information shared with subscribers stays inside of Facebook.

How about you?  Are you going all in with this like me?

Leave a comment below or share this with your community on with any of the share buttons below – or on the little red bar at the bottom of this page.  

Until tomorrow,  Jeff

Email Marketing Done Right

When used well, email marketing is one of the most powerful and reliable methods for delivering valuable information to a distinct audience – one that asked for it.

Email Favors the Better Marketers

What I like most about email marketing is that it favors the better marketers – those that greatly respect their subscribers.

Today, it is very easy to unsubscribe or junk emails from sources that fail to deliver. This is why smart marketers make a special effort to deliver well crafted email newsletters that deliver a value exchange.

My newsletter promises to deliver one monthly message that captures the best of this blog and others like it. It’s a great summary for my regular blog subscribers, as well as being a a huge time-saver for busy business owners that simply want to stay current with online marketing trends.

You know what else?  I love creating those monthly newsletters because it has become a valuable discipline for me. As you know, sharing only your best content takes work. It’s a process of filtering and assimilating lots of data into a pure message (with useful links for those that want to dig deeper).

If you are not yet a subscriber, you can join our community by entering your email in the box below (with your name and company being optional).

That just helps us to get to know each other better.

Sign Up For Our FREE Newsletter!
* indicates required



It should go without saying, but I’ll say it anyway.  We never, ever share your information – period.

Strict Spams Laws Require Your Full Attention

One of the most valuable benefits of email marketing are the incredible analytics they provide: split-testing of headlines, open rates, bounce rates, and unsubscribes.

My subscribers have blessed me with a very favorable open rate, with only a few unsubscribes. Unfortunately, like many other online marketers I get my share of both soft and hard bounces.  The hard bounces are usually misspelled addresses I have collected (with permission) at my speaking events.

Soft bounces are another matter that relates to lots of variables outside my control. So, if you are a subscriber and have not been receiving my newsletters, please check your junk folder, contact me, or resubscribe.

The August Edition of my Web Marketing News should be in your inbox tomorrow morning. If it isn’t, then you need to take action to continue receiving them.

If you are looking for a great email marketing service, I highly recommend MailChimp. They are constantly adding new features, provide great video and PDF tutorials, and best of all – it’s FREE for subscriber lists up to 2000.

Is It Acceptable to Use Email to Offer Paid Products and Services?

Prior to social media, email was the only form of directly connecting with customers online. This led to the practice of buying and sharing lists to reach as many people as possible – with the hopes that a few would buy.

Thanks to the CAN-SPAM Act, one that services like MailChimp take very seriously, those days are gone.

Does this mean you should not make product and service offerings in your newsletter?

Of course not. The rules of email marketing are virtually the same as with blogging and social networking – deliver so much value that when you occasionally make an offer it is well received.

In fact, you should make periodic offers.

Why wouldn’t you? When you earn the trust of your community they naturally want more.

My Offer

Many of you have requested an opportunity to personally work with me to get hands-on training for doing social media right. Now you have that opportunity – which is limited to the first 18 that sign up.

On September 29th and 30th I’ll be offering a two-day Social Media Summit here in Chicago for small businesses. Because this event is the first in a planned series, it is specially priced at $397 if you sign up before the end of August.  After that it goes up to $497.

Yes, I know it’s ridiculously low amount for two full days, including breakfast and lunch. Not to mention that autumn is one fine time to visit the Windy City!

Normally, I keynote for small business association.  But since those events do not typically allow for offering an intensive two-day program, I’ve decided to bring it to you directly.

I’m making this offer to a select few for helping me launch my series of summits. You’ll be getting plenty of special benefits that will include free access to future events. I’m not kidding.

And since social media will continue to evolve and change, you will be essentially getting two for the price of one.

There will soon be a landing page on this blog to give you all of the details. However, I’ve already signed up a few of my best clients, so if you do not want to miss this opportunity – contact me soon.

Leave a comment below or share this with your social community by liking it on Facebook, or sharing with any of the share buttons below – or on the little red bar at the bottom of this page.  

Until tomorrow,  Jeff

Photo Credit: Nieve44/La Luz