Unless you’ve been on a deserted island somewhere, you know that Facebook is a valuable channel for marketing yourself and your business. Salespeople leverage it to stay in touch with customers and build relationships with new ones. Businesses make it part of their marketing plan to generate leads and sales. Almost anyone can benefit from Facebook’s reach and it’s crazy to ignore the opportunities there.
When growth of a social channel exceeds the public’s ability to adapt, questions and concerns arise. Opportunities abound but many stop short of taking action. One of the most common questions is…
“Do I need a separate Facebook Page for business?”
…and the answer is… it depends. A simple yes or no… is not that simple.
Facebook continues to do an amazing job of attracting users while improving marketing opportunities for business. Changes happen often and that adds more confusion when searching for the right answers.
Choosing whether or not to have a separate Facebook Page for business depends on how you define your business and its goals.
Each of the following types of businesses have specific Facebook goals, with some overlap:
- Salesperson: build a relationship network, become a trusted authority, increase referrals and ultimately close deals.
- Entrepreneur: similar goals to a salesperson but “closing deals” could have different connotations (such as startups or app developers) for which different strategies would be used.
- Business that sells to consumers (B2C): establish awareness and build interest in the brand, build a community with the ultimate goal of converting fans into customers.
- Business that sells to other businesses (B2B): similar to B2C and there’s a short list of very specific strategies that work for B2B on Facebook, which begins with knowing where your customers spend time.
- Non-Profit: build awareness, interest and even passion for your cause, foster advocacy, and increase donations.
It’s important to understand what your goals are first before venturing out onto any marketing platform. Define your business objectives and always put strategy before tactics.
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Facebook for a Business
Marketing a business on Facebook requires a “Business Page.” It’s actually against Facebook’s Term of Service to have a personal profile for a business, so don’t make the mistake of using a Personal Profile for a business. You wouldn’t want to do that anyway because Personal Profiles don’t have the benefit of Facebook ads, which you’ll definitely need in order to promote posts and drive website visits and conversions.
You will however, need a Personal Profile in order to act as Admin on your Business Page. All Facebook Business Pages are run through personal accounts and this is confusing for beginners.
It’s best to create an “administrative” Facebook personal account to administrate your Business Page. Why? Because I’ve seen too often where business owners have left the social media up to someone, that person is no longer working for them, and then they’re unable access their own page.
Pro Tip: When creating an personal account with which to run your Business Page, always use an email address with your company’s domain name. This gives you complete control over your page and who has access to it. Once you’ve got your Business Page created, then add trusted users as Admins on the page (you can change or delete them anytime).
Facebook For Salespeople and Entrepreneurs
For a salesperson or entrepreneur, the answer to “Do I need a separate Facebook Page for business?” is more complex. It’s mega-important to identify what you feel comfortable with. Social media should be a positive experience for you. If it isn’t, it will show in how you connect and engage.
Here are a few scenarios to help determine IF you need a separate Facebook Page for business:
1. If you’re new and don’t know what to do, start with a Personal Profile (Account).
Fill in all your contact information and remember to put your work contact info, not your personal info. That way, you can make your Profile public without worrying about your personal data. When your Profile is public, you’ll be found by customers and prospects.
2. If you have a robust Facebook Personal Profile, then continue leveraging your Profile as a networking tool.
If people are connecting and engaging with you, keep going! Don’t fix what isn’t broken.
If you’re somewhere in between #1 and #2, remember it’s important to be deliberate in any social setting. Be sure to present yourself as you would if you were at your desk or meeting a prospect. You wouldn’t show up to a formal affair in shorts and flip flops, right? This is where paying closer attention to Personal Branding can really make a difference. When you know who you are as a “brand”, you know how to present yourself online.
3. If you really want to begin converting connections into customers, create a Facebook Business Page for yourself and utilize Facebook ads.
What I’m talking about now is “Social Selling” – the act of leveraging social media to build a referral engine to increase sales.
This option is for the more advanced user who should have her/his Personal Branding in place, along with a website that includes helpful content and specific sales funnels.
You’ll need a budget for Facebook ads. If you’re new, don’t spend more than $5/day to start and test, test, test. You’d be surprised at what you can do with $150-200/month in Facebook ads. But walk before you run. It’s a complicated platform and it can take a long time to get it right.
Facebook for Non-Profits
Facebook is at its BEST when non-profits such as animal rescue utilize it to spread awareness, foster volunteers and ask for donations. I’m on the board of a horse rescue and I have repeatedly witnessed the power of Facebook to save lives.
If your non-profit is just you, and you’re a novice, please choose the Personal Profile (Account) option rather than creating a Business Page. For the same reasons stated above, you can get more traction within your “friends” network and slowly build up to a point where you can either convert your profile to a Business Page or create a new whole new Page.
For non-profits that are more advanced, a Business Page is the right choice. I just completed a Facebook fundraiser for the horse rescue I volunteer for. Besides going out every weekend to help care for the horses, I do all the marketing “in my spare time.” 😉 We hold three Facebook fundraisers per year and I manage them.
I started latest fundraiser on the 3rd of the month and we hit our goal on the 22nd day of the month. Our page, Hanaeleh, has 73,000+ fans and the results are pretty awesome. After spending $300 in Facebook ads to promote posts, we raised $10,000!
It works if you work it.
It’s crucial to plan how you want to be seen on Facebook and other social media. Use these tips to determine the foundation from which you’ll build your presence.
Carefully consider all the scenarios, both present and future. Always deliver value, leave conversations better than when you arrived, and show your passion for why you do what you do.
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