Archive for March, 2011

Pros and Cons of Facebook Groups vs Pages

Tuesday, March 29th, 2011

facebook group vs facebook page

In my previous post I mentioned that the Artists for Japan fundraising initiative switched from a facebook group to a fan page. Now you may be asking yourself what the difference is between a group and a page and why we would risk losing our following by moving. At the time of the move the group had well over 700 members! Well, we weighed our options and the pros of using a facebook page happened to outweigh the disadvantages.

Let’s compare facebook groups to facebook pages from our experience:

Facebook Group

Facebook Group


  • In a group all members can directly add their friends to the group using a link in the right side bar. The group grew in leaps and bounds as each new member added their friends who they thought would like to donate art or bid on the art. It’s possible that our cause may not have gone viral as quickly if we had not used a group to start it out. In just 10 days we grew to over 700 members!
  • On a group wall the post with the most current comment appears at the top. When you go to a group wall, you are always in the thick of the action. It’s easy to see where the conversations are happening. It was fun to see some of the bidding wars and this group feature allowed us to watch the action as it happened. Without this feature we may not have been aware of much of the activity happening on the wall.
  • When you belong to a group you can add the group to your left side bar on your home page which makes it very easy to access. No searching around to find the group.


  • When you join a group you are automatically ‘signed up’ for email notifications for all posts and comments. This can be very overwhelming, especially when the group is growing in leaps and bounds and you aren’t sure how to turn off the emails. PS if this ever happens to you, it’s easy to remedy, just go to the group page, click the ‘edit settings’ button on the top right, and you can choose which if any emails are sent to you.
  • In a group all members can directly add their friends to the group using a link in the right side bar.This means that people can be added to the group without even knowing anything about it. If they aren’t sure why they are added, there’s a possibility that it could feel like spam.
  • Since the posts are constantly changing order (the post with the most current comment appears at the top) it is hard to keep track of posts and find the auction items when needed
  • It’s hard to find the group if you aren’t already a member
  • There are no links for the Photos so you have to click on a photo and then scroll from there
  • On a group the admins can only comment as themselves so it is difficult to show official posts
  • it’s difficult to share photos because there is no share link (you have to manually copy and paste the URL from your browser)
  • the share button for the group is at the very bottom of a group wall so you have to scroll down, waaaaay down, to find it

These points are only gathered from my personal and recent experiences and are not intended to give a full overview of facebook groups. To read more about how groups work and find out if a group is right for you, read this informative article (including a video) from New Facebook Groups.

Facebook Page

Facebook Page Banner


  • Pages are public and easier to promote.
  • You can set up a short URL for your page such as ours:
  • You can create photo albums
  • You can toggle from Top Posts to Recent Posts
  • There are quick links in the left side bar for Info, Photos, Notes, Events
  • Admins can comment as the page profile or as their personal profile thus distinguishing official wall posts from personal ones
  • With new pages you can now receive notifications for page activity!
  • Non-admins will NOT receive emails. Yahoo! (and for the admins of a page it is easy to turn off notifications, just go to edit page and click on Your Settings
  • When you login as a page admin, you can spread the love and create awareness for your page by
    • ‘liking’ other pages as your page profile
    • comment on other facebook pages as your page profile
  • There is a share link for every photo so it’s easier to post the art for auction on your personal profile
  • You can make a profile banner for a Page (you just can’t control the order of the pics like you can on your personal profile)


  • It will take longer to get established since the page will grow organically as people must opt in manually by clicking the ‘like’ button
  • Facebook took away the ‘suggest to friends’ link on pages, so it’s not as easy as it used to be to promote a facebook page

I’d love to hear your thoughts. These observations are from my experience only, so please let me know what your experience has been and if you have anything to add. Thanks!

Artists for Japan has a New Home!

Monday, March 28th, 2011

Artists for Japan

Artists for Japan has a new home! It is transitioning from a facebook group to a facebook fan page. This is great news. It means that the page will be public, anyone with a facebook account can ‘like’ and follow the page, and it is more manageable for the admins.

Artists for Japan was an inspired idea by artists Carrie Harper and Tomoe Afseth to allow artists to come together in a combined effort to raise money for the Japan Earthquake/Asia-Pacific Tsunami relief efforts of the Red Cross.

The first auction was only 10 days long and it raised almost $4000! The second auction has just started and it goes until May 2nd.

Hopefully we can raise just as much or even more money towards this very worthy cause. One thing is for sure, all of the money will be well received and put to good use as it will take years to rebuild the affected areas.

We are looking for artists, bidders and onlookers who want to be inspired.

I think it was Carrie who said we are putting the ‘art in heART’.

Artists For Japan

Friday, March 18th, 2011

The other day my studio mate opened a facebook group called Artists for Japan. She started the group in hopes of raising money to donate towards the Japan Earthquake and Tsunami disaster relief efforts of Canadian Red Cross.

Artists for Japan

To help out I am auctioning off this canvas to raise money for the Japan Earthquake and Tsunami efforts.

Sun Peaks Ski Resort Limited Edition 16/100

“Sun Peaks Ski Resort” is a signed and numbered limited edition #16/100 printed on Canvas. Unframed. Size: 14×18. You can either frame it or tape the 3/4″ edges with black tape to hang as is. The value is $270. Shipping is COD or you can pick it up in Kelowna. 100% of the winning bid will be donated to the Canadian Red Cross towards their Japan Earthquake/Asia-Pacific Tsunami efforts.

To place a bid, login to facebook, join the Artists for Japan facebook group and comment with your bid under my painting. My painting is here: Sun Peaks Ski Resort. Starting bid is $20.

It’s not just my painting that you can bid on. There are plenty of beautiful pieces to choose from including this original oil painting by Rod Charlesworth:

copyright Rod Charlesworth Fine Art

copyright Rod Charlesworth Fine Art

Artist: Rod Charlesworth
Title: Island Vista
Medium: oil on board
Size: 9×12
Original value: $950.00
Starting bid: $200.00

See the full selection of art for auction here.

PS You will need to login to facebook to see this group.

Thank you for your help!

Photo Contests Win you Likes

Thursday, March 10th, 2011

By now everyone knows that Social Media is a great networking tool and it’s important for businesses to take advantage of it. I wonder how many small businesses are still confused over how to use social media as a marketing tool, especially after being told that social media is NOT for advertising, it’s for starting conversations and building relationships.

One way that you can gain a lot of new exposure through social media without directly promoting yourself, is to hold a contest. Everyone likes to win something so it’s natural for people to share your link with all their friends in hopes of upping their chance of winning. There are many other ways of using social media effectively, but today I’d like to share a personal experience with you…

Recently I entered another photo contest and WON this time! It was put on by April Martin Photography – Forever in a Moment.

Here is the photo I entered in the contest:
Photo Contest

We were SO excited to win! Not only that but we had SO much fun! April is a friendly and playful photographer. She really put us at ease and made us feel comfortable in front of the camera. We LOVE the photos she took of us and we will definitely be recommending her to our friends.

Here are the ways that hosting a photo contest has benefited April’s business:

  • more exposure
  • so far she has gone from 400 likes to >1600!*
  • we will definitely recommend her to all our friends
  • one of our friends already hired her for a photo session
  • it’s extremely likely we’ll hire her in the future
  • she was able to add to her portfolio

Here are a few of the photos she took of us:
April Martin PhotographyApril Martin PhotographyApril Martin Photography

Thank you April!

On a further note, not only did we win a black and white photo session from April, but I also won a $25 gift certificate from 99.9 Sun FM. Susan Knight was asking people to upload photos of themselves dancing at work and I submitted the following collage of photos that April took at my art studio!

Studio Session with Photographer April Martin

By submitting this photo I won the Subway gift card. It also exposed April’s business to over 3000 people, which is the number of fans who like Susan Knight’s facebook page.

Thank you April and Susan!

If you are going to run your own contest have fun but also make sure that if you are using a social media platform you are aware of their policies and restrictions. Also take the time to make your contest rules clear and test it out before you make it public. The less confusion there is then the better your success rate will be. Feel free to share your stories with me in the comments. I’d love to hear about your experiences!

*this increase was over the span of 2 months and 3 different contests