Many businesses have been employing the use of Facebook to help them market their business as well as interact with their customers. Facebook can be a great tool for businesses when it is used properly, however, there are many companies out there that are making fatal Facebook mistakes.
No-No #1: Using a personal page instead of a business page.
Facebook has two separate platforms: one for individuals and one for businesses. Many businesses make the mistake of creating a business page on a regular individual page, and this is a big no-no. First, it violates Facebook’s guidelines.
Second, personal profiles have limitations that are not good for businesses. A personal profile has a numerical limit on the number of friends you can have and if your settings are set to private, only friends can see your page. On the other hand, business pages are open to the public. You can have as many fans as you want, you don’t have to approve every fan request and you have more options to increase awareness and engage with customers.
No-No #2: Not having a plan.
You can’t simply walk blindly into Facebook and expect it to work miracles. Facebook is an extension of your marketing strategy; therefore, it needs a plan.
You need to determine the goals of your Facebook page first. Do you simply want to generate awareness about your company? Do you want to use it as a way for customers to contact you for more information on your products or services? Do you want to use it for community engagement? All of these goals require different Facebook strategies, so it’s important to have a good handle on your goals before jumping into Facebook.
You also need to implement a monitoring plan. Who is going to constantly watch your site? Are you going to assign a team of employees to handle this, or are you going to outsource? You also need to determine your plan of action. If a customer posts an unhappy message on your wall for all to see, what are you going to do?
Having a well thought out plan can alleviate the ailments that can come with a social media presence. And by knowing your goals, you can accurately implement tactics to achieve them.
No-No #3: Being inactive.
The purpose of Facebook is to interact with customers and fans and be social. You cannot create a Facebook page just to say you have a Facebook page and then never do anything with it. If you’re inactive on Facebook, you will not gain any fans. If you have no fans, there’s no purpose in having a Facebook page.
If you simply cannot manage the responsibility of a business Facebook page, create a team of dedicated staff to run it or outsource it to a social media company. Depending on the size of your following and the demands from your customers, your Facebook page could be a hub of constant interaction. If this is the case, give your followers what they want and engage with them. Post pictures or videos, create fun and engaging status updates, comment and like status updates or photos of your fans. The more you can be active with your customers, the more human your company will seem.
No-No #4: Being redundant.
One step above being inactive, you’ll find redundancy is also a Facebook no-no. Facebook business pages allow you to do a wide variety of things. You can post pictures or videos, ask questions to your audience, post status updates, create polls, create deals and even allow users to “check-in” to your location. Since you have all of these options at your fingertips—use them.
The more interesting your page is on a daily basis will entice your fans to visit your page more often. If you are constantly boring them with the same old garbage, you could end up losing them in the long run.
When used correctly, Facebook can be a great addition to your marketing strategy. You can get your business in front of your target demographic and you can connect with your fans on a more personal level, listen to their input and get a grasp of what they want from you and what will make them happy. If you can get all of this from a social networking site, it’s important that your business does not implement any of these no-nos.
About the Author: Charlie Adams is a social media expert and marketing professional who works with the Palms hotel in Las Vegas. He often generates content to aid people or businesses in the proper application of social networks.
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