5 Common Facebook Fan Page Mistakes And How To Avoid Them

Since Facebook’s Timeline, we have implemented some successful Fan Page strategies. There is a flip-side to that coin, however.

In the process of discovering and highlighting the proper strategies, myself and other marketers had to make some mistakes.

Hey, mistakes are great as long as you learn from them!

Fortunately for you, I’ve compiled a list of the most common mistakes a Fan Page owner makes. Check them out!

#1 Illegal Cover Photo

Sometimes people are so excited about setting up their fan page that they forget to do some important homework — reading the Facebook cover photo guidelines.

Once you understand the rules, they’re fairly simple to follow.

Does it mean everyone follows them? No. In fact, some larger brands still tread a fine line with their cover photos.

Their choice, but frankly I don’t think it’s worth it. Let’s go over some of the rules that are most frequently violated:

  • Cover Photos may not contain price or purchase information, such as “40% off,” “Download it at our website,” or “Free Sunglasses All Summer Long.”
  • Cover Photos may not contain contact information, such as web address, email, mailing address or other information intended for your Page’s About section.
  • Cover Photos may not contain references to user interface elements, such as Like or Share, or other Facebook site features.
  • Cover photos may not contain calls to action, such as “Get it now” or “Tell your friends.”

As you can see, this limits the amount of direct marketing and promotion that can be done with a cover photo.

Instead of using these illegal tactics, try using a picture of one of your products. There is no rule about showcasing an image!

And for those of you who lack the image editing software required to do this, here is a program that will help you out.

Posting Failures

Posting on Facebook is how marketers usually generate engagement on their Fan Pages.

It also has room for some potential pitfalls.

Let’s take a look at some posting mistakes that Fan Pages have made in the past, and how to avoid them.

#2 Finding The Right Amount

Facebook suggests that when you first launch your Fan Page, start by posting once or twice a week.

Well, that’s bad advice. Every Fan Page’s market is different.

It is important to establish a relative idea to how often you should post based on the engagement received.

Do not flood your page with posts though! You can (and will) see an adverse effect of saturating your timeline with pictures and text.

Try to find the happy medium between those two points. It can take some time to find the right amount of posts per week, but once you have found it, try to stay close to that number.

The key take-away message here is don’t get excited and post too much, yet don’t be timid with posting either. Find that middle ground.

#3 Straying Off-Topic

Let me preface this point by saying it is ok to go off-topic. It’s why you go off-topic that matters.

It’s fine to diversify your posts. We do it simply to get engagement.

I posted a picture of some Thanksgiving cupcakes to say thank you to all of our fans and customers. In turn, they shared the photo and brought more visitors to our page.

I didn’t mention my website, product, or anything else related to marketing, but it got more fans to my page.

That kind of off-topic posting is just fine!

The kind that isn’t fine is telling everyone what your favorite video game is or how you are glad your favorite football team won. It doesn’t cater to a wide enough audience.

The broader the post the better when going off-topic. It will heighten your engagement levels and drive more traffic to the posts that you want them to see.

#4 Too Much Text In Posts

Another mistake that people often make is writing short essays in their Facebook posts.

Since the introduction of Twitter, people have become accustomed to seeing posts with a limit of 140 characters. That gets you a line or two of text in Facebook.

So naturally, when people are presented with a wall of text, odds are they’re immediately turned off by the length alone.

It could be the best, life-changing advice in the world, and they wouldn’t read it. Shame on them!

Instead of writing down the advice in its entirety, write a headline. A caption. A snippet. Then have a link to your blog / sales page / squeeze letter / marketing tactic that they can click on.

Let your marketing pages and blogs do the work for you — that’s why you made them in the first place. Simply direct them there with the Facebook post and pique their interest.

#5 Breaking Contest Guidelines

This is perfectly legal.

If you want to run a contest on Facebook, it takes a little more research than you would ordinarily think.

Most of the other articles I’ve read are now outdated according to Facebook’s promotion guidelines, so here’s the abridged version.

  • The contest must be legal. (ie. no giving alcohol to minors)
  • The contest must be run through an app.
  • The contest is in no way, shape, or form affiliated with Facebook.
  • In order to register, you can have people like your page, check-in at your place, or connect to your app.
  • Liking, sharing, or other Facebook functions cannot be the method of registration.
  • You cannot contact the winners through Facebook.

Basically, Facebook wants no part of your contest, but are allowing it under some strict guidelines.

One of the guidelines that marketers don’t quite understand is the whole “liking” thing. You can have people like your contest but not like your contest? What?

Here’s the deal with that — you can have what’s commonly known as a Fan Gate to get access to the contest.

The actual action of “liking” may not be used to enter someone into the contest. This is generally done by filling out a form!

So, click “like” to see the contest, and enter your information.


I hope these cleared a few things up for you all. Yes, rules and regulations can be confusing, especially when not everyone abides by them.

By avoiding these mistakes, not only will your Facebook Fan Page be on the straight and narrow, but you’ll get increased engagement on your Fan Page.

For more tips and tricks check out our other blog posts. Our Timeline Blueprint is also full of helpful information.

Thanks for reading everyone, and please share if you found it helpful!

About The Author

Brian Moran

Brian started Get 10,000 Fans back in November 2010 after figuring out how powerful facebook marketing could be for his baseball training website, trainbaseball.com. Brian focusses on helping entrepreneurs and business owners how to attract news leads using facebook.