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Hot on the heels of our custom domain announcement last week, we rolled out more social sharing goodness today. This time we focused on making our Facebook integration much more flexible.

Like

Set what you want your subscribers to “Like”

When we launched social sharing, we made it easy for any of your subscribers to Like your email on Facebook. That worked well for a lot of you, but was a little inflexible for some. You might have your own Facebook page that you’d rather them Like instead. Your email might be pointing people to a landing page, and you want your subscribers to Like that page instead of the email itself. Now that’s all possible, all without your subscriber ever needing to leave your email.

Introducing the likeurl property

To keep things as flexible as possible, we’ve added a new property to the fblike tag called likeurl. Throw any URL in there, and that’s what your subscribers will be Liking when they click the Like button button in your email.

 

<fblike likeurl="http://yourdomainhere.com"></fblike>

An example of this in action

Here’s where the good stuff happens. Let’s say I’m sending a weekly newsletter for Threadless, who have done an amazing job of getting more than 250,000 people to Like them on Facebook. When I send my weekly email, I’d much rather my subscribers Like my main Facebook page for Threadless rather than an individual email I’m sending. So, I throw the following in my email:

<fblike likeurl="http://www.facebook.com/threadless"></fblike>

Now, when any of my subscribers hit this Like button, they’ll see something like this (depending on whether or not any of their friends on Facebook like Threadless already).

The Like lightbox when you set a likeurl

As well as putting this like on the subscriber’s Facebook wall, they will also continue to see any updates Threadless post to Facebook. Essentially, that recipient is subscribing to your Facebook page when they Like it. It’s a brilliant way to encourage your email subscribers to keep up with you through another medium.

One small design change you might notice is that we now list the URL that person is liking below the modal title, just to make it clear what it is they are endorsing.

Take control of Likes with Open Graph

It’s possible to customize how Likes display on profiles, using Facebook’s Open Graph protocol. For instance, if you want a custom picture and description to display when someone Likes your site, then you can set this by adding Facebook-specific meta tags to the site itself (not the email campaign). Find out more at Facebook’s developer site.

Keeping your reports simple

Now that you can set the URL you want subscribers to Like for an individual Like button, and you can have multiple Like buttons in a single email, we wanted to make sure that data was available in your social report.

Now when a subscribe Likes a URL that you’ve set that isn’t the email itself, we’ll include the specifics in the sharing timeline. This means that even if you include multiple Like buttons in an email, each with a different destination page, you can still see a split of which ones were more popular in your reports. Here’s an example:

Reporting

We’ll still pool all of your Likes together at the top of your reports so you can easily compare them against those that share your email on Twitter or forward it to their friends.

With this out the door, we’ve got some other surprises for sharing on Twitter coming your way soon. A big thanks to everyone who gave us so many great suggestions after the initial launch of social sharing. It’s been brilliant seeing so many of you embracing it already, and hopefully this update will encourage more of you to follow suit.

This blog provides general information and discussion about email marketing and related subjects. The content provided in this blog ("Content”), should not be construed as and is not intended to constitute financial, legal or tax advice. You should seek the advice of professionals prior to acting upon any information contained in the Content. All Content is provided strictly “as is” and we make no warranty or representation of any kind regarding the Content.
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