Facebook… Make It or Break It

By Amanda Bala

You have finally made the leap.  You went ahead and opened that Facebook account.  But now… do you know how to use it effectively?  In our last article, we talked about why FB is important to businesses.  Now let’s talk a bit about the Dos and Don’ts of Facebook etiquette.  What do you need to do to be a business success on Facebook? 

The first rule you should stick to when using FB for your business, is just that.  Keep it about your business.  Use separate pages for your personal account and your business.  Your clients and potential clients do not need to know what you did this past Friday night, or see the photos of your family birthday parties.  That being said, you do want to bring your personality into your business page.  You want your site to be visually satisfying and inviting to those who visit.  You need to be open and friendly on your site to encourage your fans to recommend it or participate on it.  How do you do this? 

First of all, you need to get fans to your site.  You can achieve this several different ways.  You can send a request out through your personal page asking your friends to become fans of your business.  You can also ask your family and friends to send requests out through their personal pages as well.  This is an inexpensive and easy way to get your fan base started.  It does not take a lot of time and is a good beginning.  Another avenue you can try is to advertise on FB by purchasing ad space.  These ads can be targeted by geography, demographic, age, interests, etc.  You name your price and it is a pay per click model.  The key here is to be sure that the money and time invested will bring you the return you are looking for. 

Now once you have fans, what should you post?  You want to be engaging with your FB posts.  You want to add things that encourage thought and discussion.  You can post news about your business or things happening in your field of expertise.  You can post reminders of upcoming events.  Photos and videos are great to add to your wall.  However, be sure that the posts are specific to your business and appropriate to those that will see them.  Again, it is all about balancing the personal with the professional.  Some other fun ways to generate traffic to your FB page is to share interesting and thought provoking questions.  You can even put a few controversial ideas out there.  When going this route, be careful that you do not take on any topics that could be considered too offensive.  However, if there is something controversial happening in your field, put it out there.  People love to discuss current events!

Now, the other side of the coin… what should you stay away from?  Again, you do not want to be overly personal. You also want to stay away from the hard sell.  Nothing turns a new FB fan off faster than getting several notifications in a row trying to be sold something.  Another good rule is to refrain from making derogatory comments about your competition.  It is great to keep up on what your competition is doing, but no one wants to hear you bashing another company online.  Lastly, keep it professional.  Profanity, offensive language and suggestive innuendo are all big No-No’s for your FB page. 

In the end, you want to come across as professional but friendly on your FB business page.  The goal is to get more fans, to get more referrals, to get more people looking at and talking about your business.  You want to give them a reason to come to you as opposed to your competition.  You have taken the time to put together a Facebook page for your business.  Be sure that your online actions are actually helping, not hindering your efforts.

3 Responses to “Facebook… Make It or Break It”

  1. Awesome info — thanks for the update!

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