Review: Facebook All-in-One for Dummies

I use Facebook on a daily basis: for my Community Manager job at Burt’s, my personal profile and this blog’s Facebook fan page. This is Momcomm’s first review and as you know, I’m pretty selective about anything I do on here. But I was asked to review this book and I really couldn’t say no.

Why? Out of the big old blogosphere, Melanie is one of the people I trust the most so I knew anything she wrote would be top notch. Melanie and I often chat about Facebook and I’ve learned a lot from her. Now that I have this book, I’ve learned even more (you’ll see what I mean below). Here are my thoughts on Facebook All-in-One for Dummies by Melanie Nelson and Daniel Herndon.

Who This Book Is For

As you all know, I’ve been in marketing for over a decade. Social media is a part of marketing so naturally that’s where my career path has led me. As a marketer, I devour business-related books like a big nerd. But even if you aren’t in marketing, you read this blog because you’re a blogger. So with that in mind, this book is for bloggers who:

  • Want to drive traffic to their blog through Facebook
  • Need to know the basics of setting up a fan page
  • Want to dig deeper into creating a robust fan page that gets engagement
  • Work (or want to work) as community managers or social media strategists for brands
Aside from blogging and marketing, this book is helpful when it comes to using your personal profile too. It covers the really basic things like setting up a page as well as more complicated things like adjusting your privacy settings (which ya’ll know can be a pain on Facebook).

Six Books in One

This book is a whopping 577 pages of Facebook! The All-in-One Dummies books are actually like little minibooks all rolled into one book. That means they can cover a lot of ground while still being detailed. I wanted to show you a little about each book.

Book I: Creating a Personal Timeline

“Rather than thinking of Facebook as a zero-sum game (that is, you’re either in or out), we think of Facebook as a way to extend relationships.”

YES! I really love this quote they use in the book. Personally, Facebook is a way for me to connect with people I might not otherwise connect with as well as to connect more often with people I connect with outside of Facebook (like close friends and family).

While this section covers a lot of things you already know as a savvy blogger, you’d be surprised at all the privacy info and tips in here. This could come in handy not only for yourself but when your distant relative calls you with a Facebook question because “you’re online a lot.” I even learned a new term for something I knew about (but didn’t know there was an official word for): frictionless sharing.

Book II: Connecting with Others

Book II gets into finer details about using Facebook such as tagging people and fan pages, interacting with others and understanding the Subscribe feature. Did you know you could shoot a video with Facebook’s app? Cool right?

This section also goes over things like Events and Places, things that might be important for your own personal use. If you do social media for a brand, then you really need to learn about Events and Places (especially if your brand has a local presence or a brick-and-mortar storefront).

Book III: Connecting Facebook and Other Social Media

As a blogger, this section of the book is really juicy (eww, did I just say “juicy”?). Seriously, if you’re looking to get more Facebook savvy, read this part from start to finish. Some sections include:

  • Understanding what social media means to marketers
  • Using Facebook social plugins
  • Using Facebook badges for social proof
  • Automating Facebook to achieve marketing goals
  • Setting up notifications for individual fan page timelines
  • Avoiding automation blunders
Now you see why I called this section “juicy”?

Book IV: Building a Fan Page Timeline

When it comes to building a fan page, this section rocks.  Not only does it walk you step by step in creating a fan page, it covers everything from creating a nice looking Facebook page and using Offers and Deals to using Facebook as your fan page and advice on how to address negative comments.

It’s also great reference if you need to educate clients on how Facebook works. And in the chapter on Creating Shareable Content, they cover way more than I ever could in Day 4 of Content Brew. (And my blog logo is on page 363- woohoo!)

Oh and I had an ah-ha moment when I read the part about ensuring your fan page times is optimized for search engines. Why didn’t I ever think to consider this?!

Book V: Marketing Your Business on Facebook

As a blogger, you realize that you’re a marketer too, right? That’s how you bring in blog traffic and accomplish other blogging goals. Book V covers it all when it comes to marketing: types of Facebook campaigns, what EdgeRank is, how to run Facebook ads, creating apps for your page, understanding Facebook promotion rules and more. If you work with brands in any capacity, you need to educate yourself on all of this. Many brands themselves don’t understand the rules (don’t even get me started) so it’s up to you to educate them if need be.

Book VI: Developing Facebook Apps

This section gets really technical and is for those who want to develop actual Facebook apps (rather than an app that’s a tab on your page). As a blogger you probably won’t need this section but I find it interesting to look through. You never know when you might be working with a company who wants you to manage the development of an app or at the very least provide input regarding an app being developed for them.

How to Use the Book

Dummies books are made to be used as a reference book. While you can certainly read them front to back, the super-detailed Table of Contents and the robust Index make it easy to find what you’re looking for.

If you saw my copy of this book, you’d see little colored flags sticking out of it. Get some stickies or flags and mark sections or pages that you want to reference again. Best thing ever.

Keep this book on your shelf near your computer so you have it handy when you need it. I find myself reaching for this book rather than Googling something just because I don’t have to sift through a bunch of crummy sites to find the answer. I trust Melanie so I use this book like my Facebook handbook.

Where to Buy

You can find Facebook All-in-One for Dummies at most bookstores and of course online at places like Amazon.

Price: $29.99

Bottom Line

This book’s a keeper. Like I said, I have marked pages all throughout the book. While I consider myself Facebook-savvy, I learned a great deal of new things in Facebook All-in-One for Dummies. As a blogger, this book is worth the investment if you want to use Facebook to its fullest potential!

If you want to follow Melanie, you can find her at her blog Blogging Basics 101.

Disclosure: I was provided this book free of charge. All opinions are my own. Yep.

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  1. says

    I smiled when you called yourself a nerd – I’m a nerd also (I wouldn’t have admitted that in High School 😉 I’m putting this on my stocking stuffer list!

    • melissa says

      Hi Emily-
      The book was published before the algorithm change but it still tells you the factors that make up an Edgerank score (it just might be that they type of post may weight differently). It does talk about reach and the “talking about this” metric. Hope that helps!

  2. says

    thanks for the review, this is definitely something I need to read. I have a personal blog but also run a contributor site and in need of unlocking the Facebook “mysteries” that apply beyond my personal Facebook know-how