Facebook can be a powerful tool for small business, and our friend Shama Hyder of Click to Client (2013 update: Shama’s firm is now called Marketing Zen) shared some outstanding tips in her presentation at BlogWorld Expo.
Tip 1: Create a fan Page, not a personal Profile, for your business.
Fan pages are the best way for small businesses to interact with customer and potential customers on Facebook, Shama said. If you don’t have a Facebook account yet, create one in your own name. Then go create your Facebook Page.
Tip 2. Build your page with your purpose in mind.
Start with the little box that appears under your photo. Put something meaningful about your business in there, because that is the first place most people look on your fan Page, Shama said. Then fill in all the other basic information about your business, and put up a friendly welcome message.
Before we had fan pages, lots of businesses and associations created profiles of their business, just like their business was a person. Unfortunately, this is against Facebook’s terms of service, and it is enough cause to have your profile deleted. Now Facebook is cracking down on these profiles. So that leads us to…
Tip 3. If you have a Profile for an organization, start converting to a fan Page right now.
Slowly ramp down the activity on your old Profile, as you continue to direct people over to the new Page. Shama pointed out that you can use the Notes feature, and tag the people you want to notify about the new Page.
As you start collecting Fans of your Page, you want to convert them. Shama pointed out that there are two types of conversion:
- Convert them into consumers of your information.
- Convert them into clients who pay.
Facebook is better at making people consumers of your info. Then over time, they can become your clients. Since people are becoming consumers of our information, how do we know what type of information people will want to consume and share on Facebook? Ah! Now we’ve come to Shama’s killer secret about using Facebook for small business…
Tip 4. The number one reason people get on Facebook is to showcase their own identity.
If you want to reach people, then tap into this reason. What does your brand say about your customers? How does it look on their profile when they fan you or share your content? Do they like that connotation?
For example, if you live in Alva, Oklahoma, how does it look if you become a fan of Allen’s Liquor Store? How is that different that being a fan of the Candy Bouquet? It’s all in how your fans you want other people to see them, and how you play a part in that.
Tip 5. Facebook is the ultimate tool for sharing success stories. You were wondering how you were going to fill all that blank space on your Page, weren’t you? Well, talk with your customers about how you’ve helped them. Get permission to share their stories, and start posting them to help others.
Tip 6. Facebook Connect is the new superpower.
This is where you integrate your Facebook efforts with your regular website. It’s kind of like a badge or widget to put on your site to share your Facebook Page activity. But it also gives you statistics about your website visitors, and it adds social interaction to your site. Check out more details at Facebook Connect. It really is just what Shama called it: the new superpower.
Thanks to Shama Hyder of Click to Client (2013 update: Shama’s firm is now called Marketing Zen) for sharing such useful information in her presentation.
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Becky started Small Biz Survival in 2006 to share rural business and community building stories and ideas with other small town business people. She and her husband have a small cattle ranch and are lifelong entrepreneurs. Becky is an international speaker on small business and rural topics.