Why You Need A Facebook Business Page
In a word: marketing.
Not all businesses map well to Facebook. Depending on the niche, I’ve found Facebook’s poorer cousin Google Plus can be better in terms of audience reach. That’s because Facebook’s current newsfeed algorithm doesn’t favour business sites.
But that said, whatever your business, you should set up yourself up to take advantage of what Facebook can offer, sooner rather than later.
Facebook is for friends not business
The reason that Facebook doesn’t favour business sites is that it is primarily a social platform for the user, and preference is given to showing the posts of your friends, and the friends you interact with most i.e. “like” and comment on.
If you do that, Facebook will notice and serve you more of the same. Facebook will also place the same posts in other users’ newsfeeds, assuming that as the post was of interest to you – because you interacted with it – that it may be of interest to others.
If you have hundreds of friends, not everything they publish will appear in your newsfeed. That’s apparent if you visit their page, where you’ll be greeted with “posts you haven’t seen yet” highlighted.
There is simply too much information posted to Facebook what with your friends and the organisations you’ve expressed an interest in, so Facebook attempts to determine what may be of most interest to you, so your newsfeed isn’t overwhelmed.
Makes sense and sounds good.
That’s not good for my business page, though!
Unless you own a Facebook business page.
If you do, then you’ll soon discover your posts are delivered to around 6% of your fanbase (those who’ve liked your page). If you’re real lucky you may hit double figures of 12%. You won’t do much better unless you create something that goes viral.
To go viral requires likes, comments, and shares – Facebook interprets those actions as interest and will start pumping the post to everyone. Everyone on your page, and to everyone’s friend list who shared it. And so on. Thus like a water cascade, it goes viral.
That’s good when it’s something like a competition or marvellous offer you’re making, not so good when it’s a complaint made on your page. Unfortunately, people love a good round of criticism as much (if not more) than a great offer, so you’re more likely to go viral for the wrong reasons, rather than the right. Not even a complaint is required, just two people arguing like crazy on your page can tip it – and depending how vicious and out of hand that gets, it can lead to you deleting the post and/or comments, with maybe some people banned too.
An argument can sometimes be okay, sometimes, if it’s an amusing little spat, but mostly that doesn’t happen and it gets personal and nasty, and you don’t need that sort of public slanging match on your page.
That doesn’t sound too good, but it’s rare, but also happens enough that you need to keep an eye on what’s happening on your page. That’s not hard as Facebook’s phone apps will push notifications to you, and if you don’t have that installed, you should still be checking the page regularly, and posting similarly.
So why do I need a Facebook business page, again?
You may be wondering why I headed this article “why you need a Facebook business page” given nothing I’ve said thus far sounds particularly positive(!)
You need a Facebook business page because Facebook has over a billion users, with detailed demographic data, and you can tap into all that via Facebook ads.
If you have a business page then you have access to the Advert Manager. That has recently opened up to incorporate the Power Editor, that until very recently was the preserve of marketing experts only: now you can (reasonably easily) use it.
Marketing power is why you need Facebook
This is why you need a Facebook business page. So you can effectively advertise to the world, and on a budget that would’ve been impossible in the past. You would’ve required a budget in the millions to reach an audience a fraction of the size of your spend, and your medium would have been newspapers, magazines, billboards,TV and radio. Still prohibitively expense to consider for most small businesses.
Facebook changed all that. Now for a budget in single figures per day, you can put your business in front of hundreds of people. For double figures you can reach tens of thousands of people. All of these people targeted by sex, age, interests, location, martial status… anything that Facebook holds information on its user base about – and Facebook knows a lot about us!
You can create highly effective and targeted advertising campaigns, and because these campaigns are funded i.e. you pay for them, then you can be sure they go into your selected audience’s newsfeed. Whether they click on them and check them out, is another topic, but your business or offer, is assured to go in front of eyes.
You’ve no doubt seen such ads in your own Facebook listings. You can do the same thing, and it needn’t cost a great deal of money.
Facebook is social but it’s a business
Some Facebook users have complained vociferously since Facebook changed it’s algorithm, meaning that businesses are somewhat forced to spend to highlight their posts to their fanbase (which is true) but at the same time no other medium has as large an audience with which to promote your business: get on it!
I said at the start that sometimes Google Plus serves your business better, and it can depending on the niche or business type, but Google’s Adwords (Google’s advertising medium) costs a lot more than Facebook’s method, and has a much narrower usage in many respects. It’s rarely wrong to use Facebook, but you can be very wrong to use Adwords if you use it incorrectly. I have Google sites, but it’s rare that I have an offer that would warrant taking the bigger spend gamble that is Adwords.
But Adwords has it’s place too and can be phenomenally effective, but for many of your advertising needs, Facebook will adequately cover them, and you can control the costs without worry.
In the next posts I’ll describe how to set up and moderate your Facebook page, and go about creating advertising campaigns.
Any questions, post them below.