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Last week we introduced a Facebook page for Kreab Gavin Anderson Greater China. It’s a great space to bring together research papers, media articles on timely issues, photos of staff and more. We want staff and clients and prospective employees and potential clients to get to know our business better. Our aim is to share updates 2-3 times per business day.

To boost interest I alerted all our employees. I also invited some of my friends to “Like” the page. And then I tried a Facebook promotion.

Facebook allows you to promote the page, or individual posts. If you promote a post then it appears at the top of your friends’ news feed page, as well as those who have “liked” the page in the past. If you promote the page then you can have it appear on the right hand column of people you targeted. Given our business we selected people who reside in Hong Kong, are between the ages of 25 to 55 and who have expressed an interest int he subjects Business and/or Public Relations. Apparently there are 130,000 such people. This campaign is charged at a daily rate, not to exceed US$10 per day.

Within one week, we’ve gone from a freshly launched page to having 142 likes. For a small business, that sounds rather heady. I promoted one post for our client and that had an overall promotion budget of US$5.  With $0.29 cents left in that campaign 5,424 people saw the post.

Reviewing the people who “like” Kreab Gavin Anderson is an odd assignment. There are plenty from Hong Kong. But there are also people from Indonesia, America, Australia and more. It’s hard for a geographically constrained small business to evaluate the effectiveness.

And of course there are concerns about “click factories” or businesses that are paid to promote online content. In one extreme it’s hilarious (see the video at the end of the post). In others its disconcerting to see if the people who click “Like” are real or not.

In “Social Media Today” author Pam Moore contributed an article titled ‘Does This Facebook Business Page Have Fake Fans? How to Find Out’ the rapid addition of thousands of fans should raise eyebrows:

“However, unfortunately there seems to be a new wave of cheaters, influence score addicted self-proclaimed “gurus” that are willing to risk their reputation, integrity, ethics, trust, clients and relationships for a few hundred or tens of thousands fake Facebook fans.”

In her article Pam then explains how to dive behind the number of “Likes” to determine if your favourite brand purchased their fans or really connected with them. Following her analysis it seems as though our 142 “Likes” are genuine. We aimed at people who expressed an interest in our business category. We’re adding content that’s relevant and timely. And while it may take us time to build a large community, it seems we’ve taken the right steps.

That’s reassuring, especially when some resort to chicanery (or comedy) as in this video:

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