I have previously written a blog post about creating a Facebook page for your business. Facebook is still one of the first places I head to on the Internet, but is it business or pleasure?
How do I use Facebook?
I use Facebook primarily to speak to friends and found out what's going on. I created a page for Picseli to promote our services and show off examples of our work. All of these blog posts feed directly to my page, and I update the photo albums when we have completed a new design. Every now and then if there's a change in legislation or something of interest to report I will write on the 'wall'.
Benefits of Facebook
The main benefit I have found, is that you have access to a group of people you may not have spoken to about your business before. I quite often find that acquaintances don't have a full understanding of what you do, and Facebook can help you to show your friends, and friends of friends, what you do for a living.
As it's a constant information stream you are more likely to appeal to someone at a time when they are looking for your services. Again, similar to Twitter, if you can provide advice and information people are more likely to become a fan or visit your page to find out more rather than it coming across as a direct marketing tool.
With Facebook you are able to put a face behind the business. People can see that you are not a faceless corporation and can talk to you.
Disadvantages of Facebook
For many people it's a personal site and they will blank out any business messages because they're not in work. You are also speaking to a wide group of people - many of whom may never have an interest in your product.
A lot of people don't want to mix business and pleasure on Facebook especially as other people have control over what can be said about you. You do need to carefully consider how you want your business to be percieved and whether personal communications would negatively affect it.
Should You use Facebook?
Depending on how you manage it, Facebook could be beneficial to a number of organisations. Some examples below:
Not for Profit organisations can use it to let people know about events, latest news and recruit volunteers.
Fitness instructors can use it to present motivational tips.
Pubs & Clubs can post details of events, special offers, photos.
IT Companies can inform fans of security updates, virus alerts, useful tips and facts.