Several business do one thing that absolutely drives Facebook users crazy and it is using a Facebook Personal Profile for their business instead of a Facebook Business Page, which is what a business page is meant for.
Now I know the idea seems simple enough, and easy to understand, but for some reason I continue to receive Facebook Friend Requests from businesses as I am sure you do as well. I can’t be a friend to a business offline, but I can like a business and be a fan of the business. Facebook operates the same way. People use profiles, businesses use business pages.
Note to businesses: Using a profile for your business means you created a FAKE PERSON and a FAKE PROFILE. A Business doesn’t have a first name and last name. A business doesn’t have a birthday. A business is not a person, so please don’t fake like it is. You can be reported for creating a fake profile and you run the risk of having the profile shut down and frankly irritating other people.
So why are so many businesses using Facebook incorrectly?
Well, I truly believe that it’s not their fault. It’s because Facebook doesn’t make the information about creating a business page easy to find and they confuse people further by referring to Facebook Business Pages as Business Profiles in several places! In fact, I get asked all the time from long-time Facebook users, “How do I create a Facebook Page for my Business?” and some of them have been using Facebook for years and can’t find the information.
In this post, I am going to clarify this whole topic for you and provide you step by step instructions on how to create a Facebook Business Page.
Things to Remember When Creating a Facebook Business Page
There are several things you want to take into consideration and know when creating your Facebook business page to make the process easier and less confusing:
- You have to have a Facebook Personal Profile or a Facebook Business Account to create a Facebook Page for your business. This is because every business page must have an administrator in charge of and assigned to the page. If you do not have a Facebook Personal Profile, Facebook will require you to create either a Personal Profile or Business Account before you can complete your Facebook Business Page creation. Don’t worry, people who “Like” or connect to your Facebook Page won’t be able to see that you are the Page administrator.
Business Accounts are for individuals who want to use Facebook only to administer Pages and their related Facebook ad campaigns. Business Accounts can’t be found in searches, can’t send or receive friend requests, and can’t view other Facebook user profiles or content that is not on their Pages. You are not allowed to have both a Personal Profile and Business Account, but a Business Account can be upgraded to a Full Personal Profile at any time.
- Once you have created your Facebook page, you can add another person who has “Liked” your page as an administrator. Once you have multiple administrators, you can remove Facebook Page administrators as needed.
- Pick a category your Facebook Page will best fit under. This is the main subject you want to promote on Facebook. Make sure you pick the closest match if you can’t find an exact match and know that you cannot change the category once it has been set.
- Think about your Facebook Page name carefully before you choose it. Your page name cannot be changed and you’ll be stuck with it once you create the page. If it for a public figure or artist, consider using the name of the person. If it is for a business, consider using the name of the business. If it is location specific, consider including the city or area the business is in. If it is a brand, product, or organization, consider using the name of the item it represents.
- Make sure you have a photo, image, or graphic ready to use for your Facebook Page. If you are an entrepreneur and you are your business, consider using a combination of your logo and your photo to differentiate your Facebook Business Page from your Facebook profile or maybe use a different photo. Also two different photos from the same photo shoot for consistency works really well! If you are a business with employees, think about using a photo of your storefront or a group photo of the staff with your logo. Just make sure that when the image is reduced or cropped to thumbnail size, it is still clear and easy to understand.
- Click Add information to this Page underneath the profile picture and fill out all of the information completely for your Facebook Page. This is your opportunity to let people know more about your business. Let people know what they can expect if they “Like” your Business Page. The more details you can add, the more successful you will be.
- When you’re ready, publish your Facebook Page by clicking the Publish This Page link. This will make your page visible to the public. It is amazing to me how many people get this far, forget or don’t realize they need to take this last step to publish their page, and then wonder why no one can find their page.
While your Facebook Page is unpublished, your Facebook Page will display a message that your page is not visible to other users. You can change your published Facebook Page to back unpublished at any time to hide it from all users, including your fans. While unpublished, your Page will only be visible to administrators.
- Invite your friends to “Like” your Facebook Page. You can do this by sending them an invitation through Facebook, or like some of my clients have done, you can promote it in your email newsletter, or send out a solo email blast about your new Facebook Business Page. You can also share it with friends by clicking the Share button at the bottom of the left sidebar of the page’s Wall
- Once 25 people have “Liked” your Facebook Page, you can secure a custom URL or vanity URL for your page. For example, the Bourn Creative Business Page vanity URL is www.facebook.com/BournCreative. When you reach 25 fans, you can set your Facebook vanity URL at www.facebook.com/username (see screen shot below).
- Don’t forget to “Like” your own Page! It’s okay for you to be a fan of your own page!
- You can optimize your Facebook Page’s performance by clicking the Edit Page link right below the Page Picture in the upper left-hand corner and customizing your settings for a variety of controls. For instance, you can control the default landing tab for users who are not yet fans of your Page. You can also choose whether or not to allow fans to share Wall posts, photos, and more; allowing these will enrich your Page and increase its reach across Facebook.
How to Create a Facebook Business Page for Your Business
First, you need to be aware of the Facebook Page Resource where you can learn more about creating a Facebook Page for your business, organization, band, group, product, etc. You can also learn more about using your Facebook Page and how to advertise your Facebook page using Facebook Ads. Simply visit: www.facebook.com/pages/learn.php. Here’s a screen shot of the page you will find:
If you already have a Facebook profile and you are logged into Facebook, there are a few other places you can click to create a new Facebook Page.
The first place you can click is the Ads and Pages link in the left-hand sidebar of your Home screen (screen shot below). If you do not see this link, you may need to click the More link.
Another place you can find the link to create a new Facebook Page is at the bottom of the left-hand sidebar on any other Facebook Business page. Simply look for the link that says Create a Page for My Business. You’ll also notice in the screen shot below, just below that link, is the Share button that allows you to easily share the Page you are visiting with your friends.
Some Tips on How to Use Your Facebook Business Page Effectively
Similar to the tabs across the top of Facebook Profiles, Facebook Pages offer tabs you can customize for your business. Your Facebook Business Page by default, has a Wall tab for you and your community to share content, an Info tab for you to share information about your business, and a Boxes tab for applications etc. You have the ability to dedicate tabs to other Facebook applications as well.
For example, I chose to remove the Boxes tab from the Bourn Creative Business Page, and instead add the Notes tab for my blog feed, the Photos tab to show photos and portfolio images, the Tweets tab to show my latest tweets, and the Welcome tab for new Page visitors (using the FBML application).
Don’t stress out about managing your Facebook Page!
Think about managing your Facebook Page the same way you would manage your business. For example, if you are a retail store, you need a consistent supply of high-quality inventory and you need new and fresh items to arrive frequently to keep your customers coming back. Facebook Pages work the same way. The more content you add to your page that is personal, relevant, and valuable, the more successful your page will be. Be careful not to just post links to your blog and self promotional stuff. The more variety there is in your posts, the easier you will make it for your community to interact with you and share you page and content with their friends.
As the owner of a Facebook Page, you have the ability to send updates or messages to your community by clicking Send an Update link in the right sidebar of the Facebook Page Editing Window under the heading Promote Your Page. Sending your community updates are a great way to let them know about an big announcement, upcoming event, special, sale, or new product.
Just be careful to not send updates too often. Even though you have the best intentions, sending updates too often can quickly start to resemble Facebook SPAM! I place a lot of value on my inbox space and yours too, so Brian and I made the decision to only use the Send an Update feature for major announcements and that they would be no more than once a month. In the past year, I have only sent four updates and instead choose to encourage our community to subscribe to our newsletter for the latest updates on workshops, training events, and more.
Your Facebook Page can be a powerful tool to help you build your brand and build relationships with your community. But remember that it is just another tool in your marketing toolbox. A Facebook business Page isn’t the only solution and it isn’t the magic solution. Creating and maintaining a successful Facebook Business Page requires time and dedication and the willingness to interact with your community.
If you don’t have a Facebook Page for your business yet, what are you waiting for? Use the information in this post and go get one! If you do have a Facebook Business Page, I hope you found some great nuggets of information this post that are new for you!