It sucks when you have to wait for someone to accept a friend request prior to viewing a page of a product or service that you're really interested in. It is even worse when you go to send a request just to find out they have too many requests to accept any more at this time. Well, that is one of the reasons Facebook rolled out their fan pages. This is not a personal page that you have to wait to join and gives you the ability to check out the product or service prior to making any further contact and at your own convenience.
Check out 15 reasons having a Facebook fan page will benefit your business:
1. Unlimited Friend Count: While the amount of friends you have on your personal profile page is limited and capped at 5,000, your Fan Page can have an infinite number of fans. This is probably one of the most important reasons that you should be using a Fan Page and not your personal page. Why would you ever want to limit the amount of fans your brand can have?
2. You Have The Option To Keep Your Personal Life Private(-ish): In creating a Fan Page you are, essentially, keeping your personal page separate and not connected to it. For those who want to keep Facebook for friends and family, this is an important feature. It's vital. You can control the privacy settings on your personal page and optimize publicity for your Fan Page. It can become incredibly annoying to your friends and family who are constantly seeing business updates from you. This option is a great way around it.
3. Search Engine Results: Facebook Fan Pages are indexed, which means that some of the public content is indexed as well. As a business, you want to show up on the search engines. Of course, you want to direct traffic to your website first, but having a social presence is very important.
4. Tagging Your Brand: Your fans and other Fan Pages can tag your Fan Page. Only your friends can tag your personal page. As you want to show up on as many newsfeeds as possible, you definitely want the option to be Tagged in photos and posts by others. This increases your engagement, not to mention your fan base.
5. Facebook Insights: Facebook Fan Pages have great analytics. You can tack the amount of views a post receives and monitor your weekly reach all within the Facebook Insights. To be a smart marketer means knowing how to maximize each post and learning which posts work best for your brand. This is the insight you need to deliver the right content to your fans.
6. Facebook Tabs:Facebook tabs are only allowed on Fan Pages. Enough said?
7. Facebook Contests: Facebook contests are often seen in tabs. You can't host a successful contest on your personal page because the software and third party apps are just not there. Contests build engagement and engagement is your friend.
8. Profiles Look Like You Don't Know What's Going On: Plain and simple. A brand that directs to a personal page just looks amateur. You only get one first impression. You don't want it to be this one.
9. Advertising: Facebook advertising, while expensive, is very targeted. Advertising to a Fan Page is more effective than an outside landing page because Facebook wants to keep the traffic within the network. You can promote your Fan Page through ads, but not your personal page.
10. Admin Connections: By granting select people access to your Fan Page, you avoid giving out your password to multiple people. You can chose what rights they get to finagle with and what they can do within your Fan Page. This also allows for a pretty nice checks and balances system for your brand.
11. Check-Ins & Location Services: You can allow people to check into your brand through your Facebook Fan Page. You can't do anything like this on your personal page. If you have a location for your business, this is crucial for social proofing and newsfeed marketing. You always want to get people to interact with your brand. They can do so by checking in.
12. Promoted Posts: Okay, you can promote your posts now on your personal page, but they aren't as strong. Your personal page is often less targeted than your Fan Page. In being able to promote certain posts you are able to garner more exposure for whatever it is you're trying to push. You'll also have analytic access to this promoted post. If you promote posts like I do, you'll notice a definite leap in Likes.
13. Showcase The Other Pages You Like: Fan Pages give you the option to like pages and showcase them on your page. These should be brands that you have relationships with or brands that have a similar following. See tip #15 for more on this.
14. Newsfeed Marketing: Newsfeed marketing is the basis of social media marketing. By having a regularly updated Fan Page, you'll be seen and noticed on the newsfeeds of your fans. When they interact with your posts and brand, you'll show up on their friends' newsfeeds. This is your key to gaining new fans.
15. Comment As Your Brand: This is great branding. As long as you Like pages officially to your Fan Page, you can comment on their content and posts as well. In doing so, you're increasing exposure for your brand and providing valuable (read: priceless) insight and conversations with a new audience.
To confirm for everyone that this is the best way to use Facebook for business, can you share some horror stories about what happens when you use your personal page to promote?