A Beginners Guide to Facebook for Business
With over 800 million active users, Facebook is a powerful platform to showcase your company and Facebook isn’t just a place to liaise with your friends and family, it is also a place where you can show support for a company that you like.
Facebook has Pages for all sorts of things – celebrities, television programmes, products, services, books, films – and you can Like these pages. Essentially, the pages are a profile like a personal profile, which allows you to share pictures, videos, links and updates in the same way, which are then shown to all your Likers.
To set up a Page, you must first of all have a personal account. In some cases, it is probably a good idea to start a second personal account for this purpose so that when you Like other pages and ask others to return the favour, it isn’t filling up your personal Timeline and your Friends don’t get annoyed – I have learned this from experience, and created a second account just for work purposes!
When you start your own Page, you have various categories that it can fall in to – Local business or place; Company, organisation or institution; Brand or product; Artist, band or Public Figure; Entertainment; Cause or community. Once that category is chosen, there are sub categories as well to help get your page slotted into its correct genre.
For a local business, you have many sectors that you can select, and then the opportunity to put your full business contact details. Then you have the opportunity to personalise your Page as you would a personal profile – with some information about your company, links, a profile picture, a cover picture and your opening hours if you so wish. All this can be edited at any time.
You have the option to personalise the URL for the page, so that you can add the link onto business cards and other company literature easily; Prosyn’s own company page can be found at www.facebook.com/busiessITsupport which is simple and reflects our business.
So, once you have your Page up and running, you are ready to get some Likers. First stop is probably going to be your own friends, and present or past employees of the business. You can Share the page on your own Timeline to other users. You can also post the link onto your Twitter feed and onto your LinkedIn profile, and also onto various groups that you think may be interested. It is also becoming more and more popular to share links to your social media pages on email signatures and on websites.
Now you have your page started, and some Likers – you must post some content. Our own page is updated regularly with links to our WordPress blog, pictures of hardware that we have purchased for clients, friendly welcomes to any new Likers that we gain and some light hearted content to make the page less formal. A mix between useful information and product/service spectrum is probably a winner, and setting a target for Likes with an incentive to win something is also a good option. Making your posts something that your Likers can interact with is very useful, especially if they share content on their own Timeline to their Friends, so it could bring in more Likes for you.
With a Page, you can see various statistics once you have reached 30 Likes. Your Insights show you an overview of your posts, Likes, overall reach, people talking about it and check ins – as your Page is a physical place, people can Check In and that number appears on your page as well as their own Timeline. You can see a breakdown of the demographic that Like your page, to see if your target audience are watching. It is useful as you can experiment with different types of post to see which are seen by your Likers and which have virality – where a story has been made from your own post by someone else.
Facebook have an option of paid-for ads that appear to your selected target audience, but there are other ways to push your page to gain more Likes. Many other business pages are in the same boat as you, and are more than happy to Like your page and for you to then return the favour. A Like will only count if it is from a personal account rather than a business page which brings me back to why I created a second personal account for Liking other pages as it doesn’t interfere with my own Facebook profile. There are various groups on LinkedIn where you can share your business page and also Like other peoples. This is a good way to expand your network on LinkedIn as well as gaining Likes for your Facebook page.
Have a look at some pages that you Like on Facebook for more ideas. What do you enjoy about pages that you Like? Also, try different methods of content to see which is received best by your Likers, and gains the most virality.