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By mgieva • May 30, 2010

A doll within the doll: Landing pages on Facebook

Companies expanding their business pages within Facebook remind me of Russian nesting dolls—corporate sites bustle within the social network, while the social network grows within the larger Web. And all dolls look the same.

Have you noticed how identical Facebook business pages have become to company websites? The structure of your typical corporate site—an About Us page, a Contact Us page with FAQ and an eStore—seems to overlap with the now typical Facebook business page. This phenomenon proves that existing formats inevitably dictate the direction of development for new tools. So, it wasn't too long before we saw landing pages emerge on Facebook.

Landing pages, or also known as lead capture pages, call the reader to action—they might ask you to fill out a form, visit a Web page or make a purchase. Landing pages present a technique for companies to attract leads and convert them into customers. That is why the experimentation with landing pages on Facebook, a topic tackled in a recent LinkedIn discussion, greatly intrigued me.

Kristin Warner, a social media strategist at Brand Tango, was asking members of the LinkedIn Group Social Media Today for examples of good Facebook "Become a Fan" landing pages. The comments that followed in the thread offered some valuable recommendations and marketing takeaways:
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Harris FloteBote & Audi: Enter to Win a Contest

Harris FloteBote, a marine craft manufacturer, has set up a Facebook page for photo contests. Its simplicity gives readers a sense of clarity and provides them with three ways to take action: enter the competition, vote for photos or invite friends. Audi has developed a similar contests' page, asking the community to upload photographs and win a prize, to invite friends or to vote.

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MidWest Laboratories & Coca-Cola: Interactive Lay-out

The Facebook page of MidWest Laboratories asks people to simply "like" the company and its mission. The page is designed in a creative fashion with an arrow pointing to the Facebook Like button on top. Such interactive lay-out can be fun for people to respond to. Coca-Cola has developed a similar approach—a red bar on top of the Coca-Cola Facebook page, reads "Like us? Click "Like" above."

Most online businesses are increasing customer conversions through landing pages on their company sites. That might no longer be enough, though. With the call-to-action format shifting to another platform, businesses will have to quickly adapt to the new environment. Please, do this creatively—sameness can only go that far.

Photo credit: John 'K'