400 million profiles, millions of status updates, billions of photos being uploaded and viewed – Facebook is huge, monolithic and truly, wide-reaching. If you are on Facebook, that’s the size of the audience which can potentially look at your profile. However, unless you are a Britney Spears, Oprah or some other celebrity like that, no one except your friends (and to an extent, their friends) would take a gander at your profile.
Still, it’s too big of an opportunity to miss if you are a business.
That’s why there is the Facebook Fan page for your business. You will have to set it up. Here are the instructions, tips and more ideas on pumping your business page/fan page up and running:
Creating the fan page
You can go directly here to start creating your page. The snapshot below shows you a sample of that might look like. While you create your page, you can put up something similar to your own website with all sorts of information about your business like your logo, the name, the tag lines, more information about your products and services, etc.
Create a buzz; develop communities
While you are there, you can even start a forum and have people talking. This by itself should help get in more traffic for you. Create a community around your products and services, have them talking about various things that affect you or your business/Industry. Initially, however, you must take the plunge and feed some really good, valuable content to your business page forums. One of the most effective ways to sustain your fan page is to feed into the updates from a blogging platform. It also provides an SEO benefit as the RSS feeds posted on Facebook provide link backs to your site.
Promote your business page/Fan page
There is just one way to push your business page on Facebook: organically. Invite your friends over, implore their respective friends to join, create a widget, also called a fan box, to ‘Join your fan Page’ (Facebook allows you to create widgets) that you could put up on your blog or website to have more people join you here. You could promote the page on the forums you frequent and push even more people to join you through Twitter.
Facebook allows you to add a lot of applications to spill more juice on your Fan page. You could add the social RSS app to bring in your blog posts (fresh content is always good and this acts as more fodder for your fans on the page + more traffic for your blog). There are many more apps for you to choose from and you could pick whatever you deem necessary. You may even want to create custom apps( or have someone create it for your business specifically ( I couldn’t help but notice the Pizza Hut app that allows Facebook users to order their Pizza right there on Facebook).
Promote and engage
One key on the Internet is to promote yourself (or your business) as much as you can. Only its different than you think. Don’t do it the sleazy, oiled hair, used car salesman kind of promotions or selling. Because it’s social media, you will do “Information Marketing” with a primary focus on invoking trust and creating a favorable community among your potential customers, your own business and your existing customers. A perfect synergy most businesses will kill to be in. And don’t be shy about promoting others and writing about posts that will be of value to your prospect or customer base.
Contests are also great for engaging your audience an building a fan base, of course, if you have something to give away. It can be as simple as providing your service for a certain amount of time, or a prize like a gadget given randomly to those that sign up via your facebook fan page. In November of 2009, Facebook came out with new rules and guidelines in running contests on your page. I’d recommend using a third party application like Wildfire if you plan to run contests.
Have you created a fan page? What is it? Are you about to create one? How will you go about creating it?