A Guide to Facebook Pages

Facebook provides a way to build an audience for your business using pages. Why would you want to do this? An audience in a sense provides a critical mass of awareness that can translate into direct or word-of-mouth use of your service. Facebook is the quintessential walled-garden, an internet you have to sign into, but the ripple effect of interacting with users can boost memory-recall of your business. Think of it as a hoarding in a stadium rather than a desk on the street with “please take one” flyers.

1. Visual interest.
Your first task is to build your page. You’ll need a Facebook account of your own to do this. Don’t delay, a competitor could claim your desired page name while you wait.
You’ll have a number of options to dress your page, including a banner image and a profile image. Use these effectively: an image that captures what your business does, with your main website address, email and phone number in easily read text on it, is essential. The same applies for your profile image/avatar, but for this, simplify. You should change these every couple of months if you can, as changes will show up in the timelines of your fans.

2. Post original content.
If you blog on your main website you should plug your blog’s RSS feed into your Facebook page. There’s plenty of services for doing that, and plenty of how-to guides. Dlvr.it is one such service. More importantly, you should post original content in addition to your feed. This will reach a much wider audience. Short, related, interesting articles, and photos of your business’s achievements, new offices, etc, will help build audience due to the viral nature of interaction on Facebook pages. If a fan “likes” something you’ve posted, that like will appear to their friends, who may click to see what it’s about and in turn become a fan.

3. Avoid overkill.
A few posts over a few days are better than a slew all at once.

4.Install a Like button for your page on your main site.
Clients may well find you via Google, and book you through your website, but will often leave praise, publicly viewable praise, on your Facebook page. There’s a few plugins available either via your platform (ie WordPress etc) or Facebook directly for installing a Like button on your main site. Provide an easily found option for the traffic that finds your main site through search engines to convert into fans of your page on Facebook. Remember the more genuine fans you get, the greater the potential reach of your business. Ask your friends to like your page to get the ball rolling.

5. Experiment.
Are there times when posting gets a bigger audience? What do these graphs mean? Don’t be shy of getting into the bones of your page and seeing what makes it tick.

6. Check your messages.
Potential clients will often use your page to make enquiries. Check your page daily, and make sure your alerts are linked a regularly-monitored email account.

7. Don’t post unrelated content.
Pics of kittens have nothing to do with your business unless you’re a vet, pet shop, or professional meme artist.

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