Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Using Facebook from a Business Perspective

Facebook for Business, practical tips

by 2Market - online and offline marketing experts in Sligo and West of Ireland

Most businesses don’t realise what a powerful marketing tool Facebook is.

There are over 1.6 million people in Ireland on Facebook, with 850,000 people logging on once a day and 83% logging on at least once per week.

According to an Irish survey carried out by Mulley Communications in April last, a significant proportion of advertising on Facebook is read. 71% of those surveyed indicated that they looked at ads on their profile pages. It also found that users paid even more attention to page updates in their newsfeed wall.

Convinced? Here is my practical guide to doing business on Facebook and integrating it into your online and offline marketing strategy!

1. People set up “personal profiles” in Facebook and businesses set up “business pages”. This may sound like a basic recommendation, but I come across businesses all the time, that are using a “personal profile” which is a breach of Facebooks terms of use, and could result in an instant termination of the account. And if a business has built up a few hundred or even a few thousand (and yes I have come across this..) friends, losing all those valuable contacts would simply be a disaster.

2. Personal profiles are limited to 5000 friends, so that’s another reason to use a business page.

3. Personal Profiles have “Friends” and Business Pages have “Likes” (Previously known as “Fans”).

4. “Friends” on facebook have access to each other’s personal information, photos and posts. So keep your friends as “friends” and your business associates as “fans” (of your business page.)

5. Fans of your business page will receive updates from you, but have no access to your personal profile. This is an important point to make as most businesses I come across, have avoided Facebook or are using it incorrectly for this very reason.

6. A business page may have more than one administrator, so the task of updating your business page can be shared between a number of people in your organisation.

7. Invite all your “friends” to become “fans” of your business page. Remember, social networking is “word of mouth online”, so use your contacts’ to spread the word. Encourage all your employees/friends to repeat the exercise which will help to get the ball rolling!

8. When you have 25 “fans” you can personalise your business page (eg. by using the following link: http:/

9. Post interesting regular (but not too regular) updates on your facebook page. Give your fans (and potential fans) a reason to keep coming back for more. Be inventive; run competitions, encourage discussion... think outside the box! The key is to differentiate yourself from your competition!

10. Post updates on other relevant Facebook pages. For example; I’ve often posted updates on the Mayo Association Facebook page for events I think their fans may be interested in.

11. Remember to encourage your “fans” to visit your website. So always include a link to the most relevant page on your website. Most businesses miss this point. Your Facebook page is a very powerful tool to drive traffic to your website. Use posts’ on your business page to stimulate interest and redirect traffic to your website.

12. I continue to find PPC Advertising on Facebook an amazing tool as it enables advertisers to accurately target people based on their location, demographics, likes/interests, their education and work.

Want to find out more...? 2Market manages a number of Facebook Business Pages for clients across a range of sectors. Simply call us on 087 9291125 or fill on our online enquiry form.

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