For most of our clients Facebook is one of the most misunderstood social networks. Also worth noting is that when we perform a free analysis of a potential client’s web presence, Facebook and how it works for a business is what people want to know about more than any other metric.
Most businesses are using Facebook at this point, some of them are doing alright and have a basic understanding, and others are completely oblivious and end up wasting a huge amount of time on the social network. Today I want to cover just a few of the most commonly misunderstood factors in plain English.
Facebook Page vs. Facebook Group or Personal Page
- If you are a business it is against Facebook’s terms of service to use a normal personal profile as a business. If you’re doing this, STOP. Facebook can and will remove your profile and there’s no getting it back.
- Facebook Groups can be very useful, and many people are more comfortable with groups because they’ve been around longer and people just seem to “get” how they work a little better. The problem with a Facebook Group for a business is that you do not get Facebook’s analytics or “Insights” with a group. This data is super-important and necessary if you hope to truly leverage Facebook for your business.
- “Pages” actually show up in search results quite often. In some cases an active Facebook page shows up higher in search results that your website. In this case your Facebook page will be the most available front door to your business for Internet searchers.
- Yes, you can only set up a Facebook Page THROUGH your own personal profile. No, the world will not see your own information or personal profile and they won’t know who set up the page.
The “Insights” mentioned in the second point are a very valuable set of metrics that will help you to understand your Facebook audience and better utilize the social network to both grow and benefit from this audience. Using this data to shape your Facebook activity will help you to become more intuitive and effective in your efforts. The video below highlights some of the newer features and metrics that are available to you as a Facebook Page owner.
Talking About This?
You’ll see a few metrics right below your page’s cover photo and page name (which is below your Admin Panel if you have a Page and not a group or personal page. The admin panel is only visible to you and anyone else that you give admin privileges to). The “talking about this” number simply shows you engagement. This number indicates how many people have either “Liked”, commented on, or shared an update from your page in the last seven days. This is just a number, but it does allow you to have a quick “feel” for how your page is performing. You want to keep this number as high as possible.
The most common mistake that we see business owners making is driven by a fundamental misunderstanding of how social media in general should be used by a business. Most think that social networks, including Facebook, are merely another place to broadcast a message. While social media can in fact be leveraged for marketing purposes…it will never produce a yield for you if your message continually sounds a lot like “buy my crap”. A little finesse goes a long way.
Try this simple 12/1 rule. Post 12 updates that are entertaining, informative, edifying, or empathetic for every 1 “buy my crap” update. Do this for one month and be amazed at how much more engagement your page gets. Watch that “talking about this” grow and grow.
Facebook Has an Algorithm
Its name is EdgeRank, and it’s a real booger. In a nutshell: EdgeRank dictates whether or not your updates will show up in the newsfeed of those who like your page (I bet you thought everyone saw everything you posted, didn’t you?). The higher the engagement on your page, the more your updates will be seen by the largest percentage of those who like your page. So, you HAVE TO HAVE ENGAGEMENT! Posting compelling content that moves people to like it, comment on it, or share it is the short answer on how to please Facebook’s algorithm. EdgeRank will put the damper on your “buy my crap” updates every time.
I hope this post helped you to understand Facebook for business a little better. The three things I’ve touched on here today really are the things that seem to interest most people as we talk to them about their web presence. Take advantage of our free web presence analysis for yourself if you’d like. We’d be happy to have that discussion with you!