- The Search Agents - http://www.thesearchagents.com -

Facebook Vanity URL Best Practices

As many folks know, over the past 3 weeks Facebook [1] has implemented a mechanism for assigning vanity URLs [2]to individual user profiles and to product Pages. TSA participated in the process on behalf of clients by reserving some vanity URLs, thus preventing the general public from obtaining these vanity names during the initial launch on June 9.   In addition, many clients enforced their trademarked and copyrighted terms directly through Facebook’s trademark reservation process. As a result, many core URL’s have now been assigned for clients to their main Facebook Page.

In lieu of a permanent reserved list, a minimum Fan requirement of 100 Fans per Page has been implemented. [3] This means that except for terms protected by trademark or copyright, the only way to reserve a Facebook vanity URL is to assign a Page with 100 Fans to it.

At this time, Facebook is not planning to provide a system of redirect URLs (for example, multiple URL’s all pointing to the same Facebook Page). Facebook has stated that they hope brands will declare one official Facebook page for use by the brand and not squat on other terms.

The strategy that a brand should take with regard to its Facebook’s assets is highly unique, and should be determined by a review of the following elements:

– the prominence of the brand’s other digital assets and social media profile
– the importance of Facebook to the brand’s target demographic
– competitor’s activities in social media and the risk of squatting
– your trademark protections
– the likelihood of future paid social media advertising campaigns
– the importance of brand extensions and brand-family marketing campaigns

In many cases, it will make sense to quickly ramp up to 100 Fans on core URL’s.  In others, that is the last thing you want to do.  For example, if your squatting risks are low, you have only one key brand that is easily recognizable by consumers, and you don’ t plan to market a family of interconnected brands, it is probably OK to just go with one page.

But every situation is different – comment here/poke [4]/tweet [5]/text/email/call me if you want to chat about it.


About Darren Kelly

Darren has been referred to as the grandfather of social media at TSA, and is often asked to comment on Twitter etiquette and the "hottest" social networks in Canada. He hopes to one day find the time (or a personal assistant) to manage his multiple online personalities.