1. Your customer walks in. While enjoying your services they decide to take advantage of your free Wi-Fi.
2. To log in, they access your Wi-Fi hotspot as usual (no extra clicks). But, once they start to browse…
3. They are redirected to Facebook. Here they must “check-in” at your business’ location to continue browsing.
Stop. Right there…
…This little step is incredibly powerful.
Think about it this for a minute:
Recent studies show that the average Facebook user has 338 friends.
When they check-in at your business, a notification is sent out to all of their friends, like a status update.
This means that a single “Free Wi-Fi” user can make your business visible to – on average – 338 new potential local (likely) clients.
That’s an incredible form of “word-of-mouth” marketing!
4. Once your customer has checked in at your business’ location, they are redirected to your business’ Facebook page. Here, they see your recent updates and specials. Plus they can “Like” your page (digital marketing gold dust).
Facebook Wifi allows your existing or otherwise one-off customers to evolve into engaged valuable fans.
5. Lastly, from your Facebook page, they click “continue browsing” to go back to the internet as normal.
They get free internet. You gain exposure and richer customer-brand engagement.
Overall, it’s an enormous win-win for all.
Here’s how you can set up Facebook Wi-Fi in your business:
The 5 (or less) Technical and Marketing Steps to Make Facebook Wi-Fi Your Social Media Magnet
1 – Set up a Wi-Fi network (if you haven’t already).
If you’ve already got a Wi-Fi router, scroll down and double check your router is compatible with Facebook Wi-Fi from our list of routers below and Go To Step 2. We all know: Businesses that offer free Wi-Fi to their customers enjoy longer customer engagement. Especially café’s, restaurants, hotels (it’s a must these days). Even doctor’s offices sharing wifi decreases a patient’s perceived period of waiting. Plus: You can’t have Facebook Wi-Fi without first having the “Wi-Fi”.To set up a business Wi-Fi connection, you need to first pick a broadband deal. There are many deals available from large companies, so shop around.
Pro Marketing Tip: Keep in mind when selecting your broadband dealer to get unlimited downloads. Your customers will be using it and even a large download limit is gone quickly with a few heavy users.
Most broadband suppliers will offer Wi-Fi router packages (which are the boxes that the Wi-Fi runs through). Just make sure that they give you one of the following router models which Facebook has deemed compatible with its Facebook Wi-Fi service.
Compatible Routers for Facebook Wi-Fi
NETGEAR R6300v2 Wi-Fi router
D-Link Facebook Wi-Fi AC1750 router (DIR-865L)
Aruba Networks wireless
Intelbras Roteador HotSpot 300
ASUS RT-AC68U, RT-N18U, DSL-AC68U and DSL-AC68R routers
If your broadband service doesn’t offer a router, that’s ok: You can easily find one online.
Pro Marketing Tip: Whether you’re setting it up yourself, or having it set up, make sure to make a public network (for your customers) and a private network (for you and your staff). This will improve your business’ security.
Okay… Now that you’re set up with your Wi-Fi package. It’s time to enable Facebook Wi-Fi for your business’ Facebook Page:
2 – Enable Facebook Wi-Fi.
Don’t have a Facebook Page for your Business, yet?
Got one? Great: Once you have your page, here’s how to connect your Wi-Fi to your Facebook Page, in just a few steps. I. First, make sure you are logged into Facebook before you begin. Then, go to your router’s dashboard and Enable the “sign on with Facebook” option. The way to do this will be slightly different according to which router you chose. (For most small business or personal routers, you can quickly access your dashboard panel by going to your internet browser and typing in either http://192.168.1.1/ or http://192.168.2.1/) II. Next, find the Facebook Wi-Fi C-panel. (On our Net Gear Account, this was under the advanced tab -> Facebook Wi-Fi.) Find and select Enable and then connect your Business’ Facebook Page to the router. III. Then, in the configurations section: Choose whether customers have to use a Wi-Fi code. (Note: I suggest allowing customers direct access to encourage more wi-fi logins which will result in more free impressions for your business through check-ins.)IV. There will also be a “Session Length” option. Here you can select how long a customer will have access to the wi-fi after checking in. You can make this anything you prefer. Some business owners like to limit their customer’s access to their wi-fi, others prefer to encourage the customers to stay longer with unlimited time frames. Pick what works best for you. V. (Optional) Do you have a Terms of Service you would like to add? There is an area to do so. Just copy and paste your own ToS agreement and click save. VI. Lastly, click “Save Settings”. Congratulations! The router is all set up for Facebook Wi-Fi.
Pro Marketing Tip: If your Business’ Facebook page has age or location restrictions, it will block users who do not meet the criteria. If you want to make your Facebook page visible to everyone, make sure to turn off age and/or country restrictions for your page.
3 – Optimize Page for Local SEO
Without the right Local SEO… …the check-in juice from your customers won’t have the power it deserves. Here’s how to get the most from your page.
I. Pick a Clear & Descriptive Name.
Too many local businesses make the same simple mistake: They pick a Facebook Page name that doesn’t clearly show what they do. For example: A page simply called “The Grind”, could be either… Something about daily business, a coffee shop… or a gay bar. Without a more descriptive title, people scrolling their Facebook feed simply won’t know. For clarity, use at least one word to explain the industry your business is in. “The Grind Cafe” is much better.
II. Fill Out Your “Page Details”.
Contrary to common belief… Facebook doesn’t automatically know everything about you. Take the time to fill in your business details including:
The description section
Address and contact information.
When your customer’s check-in, this information will help Facebook to show people exactly where you are and what you do. (You want that little location pin pointing new visitors right to your building). Plus…
The description and business information you use is similar to a Meta Description. Having a well-defined description makes your Facebook Page more visible to Search Engine queries.
III. Optimize your Page for Eyeballs
It’s not technically SEO. But… The Results are in: Looks matter. Time and time again, nicely designed websites and social media pages out-perform ugly ones. (Think of your social media accounts as company assets.) To maximize the value gained from these assets, you need to (at least):
Have a well-designed banner image
Have an effective profile picture.
If you want to do it yourself: I suggest using a simple DIY online design service like www.canva.com (not affiliated, just a fan). But if you don’t want to mess around with the design… Ask your digital marketing agency to create a Professional Social branding package for you.
4 – Create Physical Cues for Customers
Facebook Wi-Fi is still new (for now). You need to let your customers know about it, and encourage them to use it. Don’t worry… It won’t be that hard to get people to use it:
It’s Free Wi-Fi.
Let’s face it… Your customers will love it! The easiest way to encourage your customers to use Facebook Wi-Fi is to use visual cues. For example: Simply place printed notices around your business, notifying the customer of your free Facebook wifi. Another way is to use McDonald’s “French Fries” technique.Here’s the brilliance of the French Fries Technique:
Every McDonalds cashier asks the simple question “Would you like fries with that?” whenever an order is placed. That question results in 3 Billion Pounds of French Fries in additional sales each year.
Here’s how to apply it to your business: Train your staff to instinctively ask “Would you like to use our Free Facebook Wi-Fi?” as a customer spends time at your business. (You know they will) Remember… Each person who logs on will be sharing your brand with hundreds of their friends. Lastly…
5 – Engineer Suitable Social Promotions
Setting all of this up and getting new followers is dandy. But… The whole point is to make Facebook Wi-Fi into your marketing powerhouse. The fact is: Over 34% of Facebook users like Pages to access a brand’s special promotions and discounts. Why not take advantage of that? It’s simple…
Design social media promotions and/or contests to maximize your customer’s engagement and your check-in numbers.
There are thousands of ways you can do this… But, here are some tactics I recommend my clients:
Promotion Tactic 1
“Simon Says Discounts”. Offer your customers a special discount in exchange for adding a specific phrase to their Check-in. It’s easily done and quick to verify (just look at their phone). Here’s an example: You own a coffee shop and let your customers know that if they write: “The coffee is SO good, I wanna marry it.” on their Facebook check-in, they’ll receive a 10% discount off their next coffee. Btw, the more novel or strange the phrase, the better, as it’s likely to gain their friends’ attention and perhaps even start conversations.
Promotion Tactic 2
“Exclusive Facebook Fan Raffle” Give them the opportunity to win something by simply liking your page. Everyone loves to win something, especially when it takes only little effort on their part. To promote the raffle: Use your Facebook page’s header image to tell fans about what they can win and the details.
Promotion Tactic 3
“Staged Selfie Award Bait”. This is something that has been popularized in Asia in recent years. So, what’s Selfie bait? Selfie bait is creating highly photogenic environments within your business that people naturally want to take a picture with. (Think of the old muscle man cut outs at the beach where you put your head through as a kid to take a funny picture).Take it a step further: You can even make your selfie bait into a contest. Each month, the selfie with the most Likes wins a generous prize. This encourages lots of brand engagement. Plus a sense of community and inclusion.
Promotion Tactic 4
“The Treasure Map Coupon” Want to keep things simple, yet repeatable? Post a different coupon code for your products on your Facebook Page once every 10-15 updates. Next… Inform your customers about the coupons as they come in the store. If they want to use them: They have to look through your Facebook page to find the coupon code for the specific item they want. That way… You are encouraging them to spend time, consuming your brand’s content and marketing. (Plus, it raises the value of Liking your page when there are unique deals on offer for fans only.)
Facebook Wi-Fi presents a huge opportunity to increase your following and customer-brand engagement. There are lots of ways to take advantage of this opportunity, but one thing is for sure: This single new Facebook feature can seriously boost your Facebook following.
Facebook has already featured users seeing up to 300% growth in their page’s engagement using this one feature. And…It’s just getting started.
Have comments, questions or social media promotion ideas you would like to share? Let us know in the comment section below.
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