Our Blog

September 06, 2011 By Hendrik-Jan Francke

Making a Facebook Page: 5 Basic Steps

According to the most recent reports, Facebook now has over 750 million users, many of which are businesses and organizations. Knowing this staggering statistic, your company may be considering a Facebook Page.

Or maybe you're looking to do more with your current Page. Too many businesses dive into Facebook without a real plan and without knowing how to effectively use the social networking site.

To help you get the most out of Facebook, we've outlined 5 Basic Steps in Making a Business Facebook Page.

Develop a Content Marketing Strategy

Yes, there is a step before creating the actual Facebook Page!

If you've read our previous post, Business + Facebook: Be Social!, you should know that a business shouldn't dive into Facebook without being prepared for the conversation. Because that's exactly what social media is–a conversation!

You must first develop a strong line of communication with your audience via email marketing or blog writing before jumping into social media.

Once you find success with these outlets and have a firm grasp on which content your audience finds compelling, then you have something to talk about in the 'conversation.'

Don't be a Posting Pest!

Regular Facebook users are not usually in a consumer mindset when they log on, so be careful not to treat them as such. Avoid being a 'pest' by following these guidelines:

  • Post a few times a week so fans aren't bombarded with your content.
  • Avoid syncing your Twitter account with your Page if you tweet frequently.
  • Share other people’s content. By posting information that fans find helpful and interesting, will make your self-promotional posts move impactful.

Create the Page & Establish Admins

You can create your Facebook Page through a personal account, but for larger companies or organizations, creating a business account is a good idea. This way—should the Facebook Page responsibility change hands—it's not tied to someone's personal account.

How is a Facebook business account different from a personal one?

From a business account, you can manage Pages and Ad campaigns, but you cannot view profiles or become "friends" with other users.

Note that Facebook does not allow you to have both a personal account and a business account. Having multiple accounts can result in the removal of both, so make sure the information for the business account is not attached to an individual’s personal account.

Securing a Custom (Vanity) URL

Having a custom URL attached to your Facebook Page is important for advertising purposes alone. Our custom URL is Facebook.com/brightorangethread, which is, fortunately for us, pretty unique. But the same doesn't apply to everyone else, so we suggest that you reserve your custom URL as soon as possible, even if you don't plan on actively using the Page for a while.

However, Facebook requires that your Page have at least 25 fans before you can choose a custom URL. In a pinch, you can always find 25 fans among your members, co-workers, family or friends. If the URL is already in use, consider using a phrase relevant to your services.

Adding Admins to the Page

Facebook has a relatively new feature that allows the account holder to add other Admins so they can manage the Page. This way, you don’t have to give your personal account information to others who may need to update the Page.

Create a Brand Identity

Once you have all of the account information set up, you can then focus on developing your brand identity.

Designing a Facebook Profile Picture

One option is to simply upload the company logo. But your logo means very little to new visitors who know nothing about your company or organization.

BOT Facebook Profile Picture

Our profile picture explains what we do for new visitors.

Rather than using our signature Bright Orange Thread label, we custom-designed a profile picture that extends down the page and says more about who we are and what we do.

Custom Tabs

A lot of small businesses or organizations don't take advantage of all the apps and tools that Facebook offers for Page customization. Some don't need much more beyond events, photos, and wall posts. But for those businesses looking to get the most out of a Facebook Page, custom tabs are a good place to start.

Custom Mailchimp Tab

We created an e-newsletter sign-up tab using a Facebook app.

The sky's the limit with custom tabs, thanks to the Static FBML app provided by Facebook. We've seen some pretty ambitious custom tabs offering videos, promotions, blog and news feeds. All great stuff to engage visitors, but make sure you are sharing content or offers that drive visitors back to your actual website!

Landing Tabs

You can also make your custom tab the default page that new visitors will see when they come to your Business Page for the first time.

Mashable Landing Tab

Mashable’s default tab encourages new visitors to “Like” their page right away.

Drive Traffic to Your Facebook Page

Building a Page and generating content are just the first few steps. To keep traffic up on your Page, you need to constantly form new strategies for getting people there.

Try these simple strategies for driving traffic to your Facebook Page:

  • Add Facebook button to your website's home page.
  • Include a link/button in your newsletter, blog posts, etc.
  • Promote through other social media/networking sites. Include a link in your contact information or description.
  • Suggest people visit the Page to perform an action. Tell people they can watch a video, read about a new promotion, or give feedback on news or events by visiting your Facebook Page.

Track Activity

Monitoring Facebook takes time and effort, so tracking its success and impact is a must.

There are Analytics solutions outside of Facebook that can provide very detailed and comprehensive reports. But for small businesses and organizations, Facebook offers a few simple (and free) ways to track activity.

Weekly Reports

Each week, the Page Admin will receive an email report on the amount of activity generated compared to the previous week.

Weekly Facebook Report

Facebook reports are brief, but they quickly tell you how fans responded to content for that week.

Facebook Insights

When logged in, the Page Admin also has access to Page Insights, which shows graphs of users and their interactions over longer periods of time. You can view reports from specific dates and export them as Excel (XLS) or Comma-Separated (CSV) formats.

Are your "Facebook Basics" covered?

Whether you're thinking of creating a Facebook Page or you already have one, these basic steps should help you evaluate your plan for using Facebook and give you an idea of where you stand.

If you need some help in designing or enhancing your Facebook Page, give us a shout and we'll be happy to provide some low-cost solutions.

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