Do Facebook Offers work for business?

Written by Alli Price

In September 2012 Facebook announced that all business pages with more than 400 fans can now seed discounts and promotions through the social network via Facebook Offers. When someone claims a Facebook Offer, it appears in their Newsfeed, helping merchants reach their fans’ friends more organically as well.

Facebook image

I used Facebook Offers to promote a $50 discount off a social media report I had conducted as part of my Mums Now partnership. We had high expectations as we were offering excellent value for money. However we were confused and disappointed when only 8 people out of the 4000 we reached claimed the offer, and none went on to redeem. In an effort to find out if others had experienced a similar result I did some research and this is what I found:

Business name: Dog Rose Healing
The Facebook Offer: A $35 distance reiki session for the space of 1 month. Normal price is $65.

How it worked: Investment – $5. Three claimed the offer, only one redeemed.

Learnings: Price is not necessarily the reason people do not book distance healings. Social stigma also plays a part as everyone can see what you like/buy/engage with on FB. Based on my results, I could have used a jpg with the same information for free.

Business Name: EcoSleep Australia 
The Facebook Offer: Annual 40% off sale with free shipping. A mix of $5 and $10 for the offer x 3 each week to promote the sale. It reached around 1000 people for the $10 and 500 people for the $5.

How It Worked: Each day around 5 people claimed the offer from the link and on our website we had sales from 3-6 new people each day.

Learnings: Facebook is still part of an overall marketing strategy. It is not always about the Facebook Offers being claimed but the amount of people it reaches and the information they retain of our company. However, I haven’t found it successful paying a lot of money to push yours sale out there. Sharing Facebook Offers on other pages can help your campaign considerably.

Business Name: MIDA 
The Facebook Offer: A free MIDA hat for every order over $50. Nil investment due to trial period in May 2012.

How It Worked: It reached 3000 people. 20+ people claimed the offer but no one actually redeemed the offer.

Learnings: Consider the right product for the season. I still believe Facebook is the most cost effective way of advertising.  I spent at least $5000 on advertising in magazines but I don’t think those magazine ads brought any sales.

It appears that Facebook Offers have not provided our sample of small businesses with any concrete monetary gains. There were minimal redemptions and subsequently few conversions from “engaging with” to “selling to”. It is important to remember that nothing is a secret on FB so your Facebook Offers should not promote anything that people would not like others to see!

That said, Facebook does still offer very good value for money when it comes to advertising and for a very small investment (compared to traditional advertising) you can have a significant reach. You may not be making money directly by using Facebook Offers, however they can be used as an effective tool to drive traffic to your site and create brand awareness as it shows up in other people’s news feeds. By changing your marketing objectives, you may get a better outcome!

Alli Price is the founder of Motivating Mum, a website and events service offering support and advice to mums in business, or those wanting to be.

Alli (Motivating Mum) and her minxes

Alli (Motivating Mum) and her minxes


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7 Responses to Do Facebook Offers work for business?

  1. Judi Gray says:

    Very interesting views and input from users. None of my clients have really used the offers option as of yet, looks like it only works for specific businesses, holidays, theme parks etc? I will be interested to hear others views also on their experiences. Thanks Alli for this one.

  2. Kerri says:

    Great article. I was just tossing up whether or not to give one of these offers ago to move some slow stock. This has answered my question. I’ll be putting my money & energy else where.

    • Alli says:

      Some people say it’s good for exposure Kerri, as when people redeem the offer it turns up in their newsfeed. But that doesn’t really help us when it comes to making sales, does it?!

  3. Alli it’s so interesting to see the experiences from other business owners using Facebook ads. I’ve seen a lot of negative comments, posts and articles about these ads and I wonder if Facebook has made it just too hard to reach the right people, or if we don’t completely understand the most effective ways to use the ads.

    I used ads to drive people to my crowdfunding campaign last year and has far more success with my own marketing online so my conclusion is more education is needed in using the ads.

  4. Dorothy says:

    Thanks for putting this together, Alli. I had been wondering about the offers, but it seems that it’s not necessarily something that is going to work for the first time, or maybe not for small businesses. I shall continue to watch this space.

  5. Pingback: Biz Mums Blogging Carnival February 2013 | Mumpreneur | Motivating Mum

  6. Christina says:

    How interesting to hear some of the stories of other organisations reflect some of my experiences. I love Facebook, and I love the openness of it and the feeling that I can reach someone who cares directly..I think it’s damaging when people ignore your facebook cry! Saying that, as a working mumpreneur…it’s added another layer to manage!

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