It’s probably one of the most common questions we get and one of the most common mistakes people make when using Facebook for their business. “Can I just use my personal profile on Facebook for my business?” The short answer is, “NO!” The longer answer has to do with all the reason’s you shouldn’t.
Here are just 7 reasons you need a business page on Facebook today!
You are driving your REAL friends and family NUTS!
They don’t want to see your business posts every day and while they love you and want to support you in your business ventures…they have probably already blocked your posts so you don’t have as many “friends” as you think you do. (Notice how few party invitations you are getting lately?) Use your personal profile to build and nurture relationships, not to sell. A business page may be a little more work to build a community, but at least the people there have chosen to see your business content.
Your personal profile and its posts are not completely public and therefore not always searchable by Google.
If you are on Facebook to build your business, you want to use a BUSINESS PAGE. All business pages are public…like a website, and therefore indexed and findable by Google and other search engines. You can definitely use both–your personal profile to connect with people and share events with friends and family, and then occasionally remind people that your meaty business resources are on your business page. If however, you are only on Facebook to reconnect with Scotty Scanlan, or Denise Furgeson, the boy or girl you had a crush on in 7th grade, then keep that personal profile alive and active!
There is a cap on the number of FRIENDS you can have on your personal profile.
Facebook limits your “friendliness” to 5,000. While you may not have been prom king or queen, and can’t even fathom reaching that many friends, if you are using it as a business, you certainly could. A business page has no limit to the number of FANS you can have and you could still be in the running for business king or queen.
A business has no gender and should NEVER be able to POKE someone!
When you see a business that boasts a birthdate, a gender and even a high school, that is just weird. The fact that a personal profile can play Word’s With Friends and send a POKE to someone, should be all you need to know to convince you that your business needs to grow up and become a real PAGE and quit pretending to be a person.
You can only take advantage of the most powerful advertising platform from a BUSINESS page and not through a personal profile.
Most people think Facebook is for collecting LIKES, FANS and getting people to comment on their content. While those things feel as nice as the soft touch of your great-grandmother’s wrinkly skin on your cheek, the real reason you want to be using Facebook is to capitalize on the fact that there is a network of 1.3 BILLION (that’s billion with a B) people and over 830 MILLION of them are checking their personal home feed DAILY! With Facebook ads, you don’t have to be friends with someone for your ad to show in their news feed. Forget going for the page like, and go for the click to your website to join your newsletter, download your free eBook or attend your next webinar. Use this power tool to actually convert these social networkers into customers! Your personal profile can’t do that even on its best day.
Facebook could (and will eventually) force you to shut that personal page down or convert it to a business page.
Facebook terms clearly state that you may have one personal profile and as many business pages as you would like. You can try to game the system and find different ways around calling your business a different variation of your name and giving it a spouse and children, but you are still breaking the rules and just like trying to claim your dog as an employee or business expense with the IRS, the Facebook police will eventually catch up with you. Live a clean life and get that business page setup today.
You are being seen as a SPAMMER by people when your business wants to be FRIENDS with them on Facebook.
A business page is an opt-in page, therefore, I am choosing to receive your information. When you reach out and send a friend request as a business, you are running the risk of people seeing you as a spammer and turning you in to the Facebook Police! (They simply click, “report as spam”) Many people have had the Facebook cuffs slapped on them and they were thrown into the slammer blocked from connecting to others or posting on their profile for a period of time. This penalty time is determined by Facebook and like the cops of New York city, they don’t mess around. Just ask yourself, “Do I look good in an orange jumpsuit?”
We’d love to hear your opinion or your questions on this matter. Agree? Disagree? Completely lost and confused? Let us know in the comment section below.
Be sure to check out all the social goodness we have on our website and if all of this is making you absolutely crazy and you need someone to rescue you from the social media madness, lay on the floor and scream real loud. After you are finished screaming, contact us for real help!
Everyone looks for the ONE thing, the magic pill, the easy button, the golden key, that will turn all of their social marketing efforts into dollars with little, if any, effort. You’ve heard us say many times, social media is a set of tools that you are adding to your overall marketing, sales, and customer experience tool belt and there are certainly no simple or magical shortcuts that bring REAL results. It takes good old fashioned work and a little savviness.
The savviness comes in the form of understanding how people look for answers and how Google dishes up those results, whether from your website, blog or social media sites. You need to do a bit of work to discover what people are searching for when they are looking for your services so you can incorporate those same words and phrases into all of your content, even adding those SEO elements to your social media posts. Implementing solid SEO practices (search engine optimization- it is what allows your posts and web content to be found by Google, Bing and other search engines), starts with these KEYWORDS, knowing your customers and what they search for.
Today more and more people are on their mobile devices and they aren’t always typing in their search queries, they are speaking them. They are “summing” SIRI or Google Now to find the information they desire. Today when we say keywords, we really mean key words, phrases, entire questions or statements that people are typing or speaking into Google or Bing to find what they need. Keywords can be any of the following:
Buying a home in Santa Clara
Need to sell my home
Where to find the best realtor in Atlanta
Best Mexican Restaurant in Denver
What hotels are near Red Rocks Amphitheater
These are the keywords/phrases/questions that need to be sprinkled throughout your website, your blog posts, video content you create and of course….your social media posts. Don’t forget that these keywords and phrases change based on consumer behavior and you will want to do regular keyword analysis.
Now that you know what words and phrases people are using to search, you want to weave these into all of your content…including your Social Media Networks.
Here are 5 areas where keywords in your social media marketing can be easily improved:
1. Social Media Bio
This is prime real estate to not only inform potential clients exactly what your business offers, but, more importantly, to make sure you are found when someone is doing a search for your type of product or service. If you bio is full of empty words, you will not be found. Take time to write out exactly what your business offers then condense it into the allotted space in your profile bio. Check out these FAB bios:
2. Blog Posts
You know the importance of blogging, but are your blogs reaching the people you want to target. The way to reach the seemingly unreachable is with those keywords. The title of your blog posts needs to be in the correct format to be found, but it also needs to have the right words that your potential clients are searching for. What are the top FAQs people search for when looking for your products or services? Those should become blog post titles!
EXAMPLE: FROM THIS: Real Estate Blog July 2014 TO THIS: 10 Tips for Finding the Best Realtor in San Jose
KEY PHRASE: BEST REALTOR IN SAN JOSE
Take time in Google Adwords or KeywordSpy.com to find out what keywords people are searching for and use them in your blog titles & posts. And don’t forget the Meta Descriptions or Meta Keywords. These are other areas that Google uses to crawl your site and let searchers know if the post is relevant.
3. Posts on Social Media Sites
Your tweets, social posts and pins will show up in search results, many times before your website SEO efforts will begin to pay off. If you’re sending out 5-10 posts a day across your social networks, those posts are showing up in Google search results and if you are utilizing the keywords for your brand they will be showing up where you want them to. Be sure you have most of your posts on the topic(s) that your audience followed you for and incorporate those keywords IN the posts.
4. Video Names, Tags, and Description Areas on YouTube
Video is king of content right now and there are a few things you can do when loading videos to ensure you get the maximum SEO juice from each one. First, like a blog post, your video TITLE is key. Don’t name your video, “Video from June 2015.” I’m pretty sure NO ONE is searching for that topic! Take those FAQs you identified earlier and incorporate those into your video titles whenever possible. Adding a key-rich title is the first part. The second area is your TAGS. Pack them in here. Select 10-15 different keywords that apply to your video topic and that tie into your keywords. The third area on your YouTube videos that you can pack with SEO juice, is the description of the video. Don’t write one sentence and leave it at that. Start with a link to your site and then write what this video is about–at least a paragraph that includes your keywords and phrases that you think people will be searching for and that this video answers.
The last place that packs a BIG SEO PUNCH, is the Closed Captions area. Google will have captions for those who are hearing impaired, but just know that Google doesn’t always interpret your words correctly and we have had times where Google puts something TOTALLY INAPPROPRIATE as their interpretation!
Have your video transcribed and then upload the word document into this area as a NEW CAPTION. Now, not only will Google not be able to embarass you, but you have yoru keyword packed SEO document that can be crawled by Google and other search engines! WINNER!
5. Naming Photos Properly
Before you post a photo on your website or blog post, name it with a keyword rich description. Visuals are the “it” thing for your marketing, so make sure you’re getting the biggest bang for your buck. There are a couple places on your photo that Google uses to bring up in a search result—the name of the photo (The name 2013-03-28-2014.52.14.jpg does you no good. Rename the photos with some of your keywords), and the ALT tags given to a photo (in a blog post AND on each web page). ALT tags are words that will appear if, for some reason, a browser does not display your photo. You’ve probably seen this when a little red x is in place of a photo on some sites. ALT tags allow the computers to give information when the images don’t load. They are also intended for the visually impaired to be able to “read” what the photo is. So add a few keywords and they will become SEO juice for your photo. On your social media posts the photo itself can pull up in a search if it is named correctly.
Where else are you adding keywords or where else do you now think you need to add them? Please share your best tips with us in the comments section.
For the third time this month I got an EVENT invitation on Facebook from a woman who does in person, divorce recovery workshops… in MICHIGAN! You would think that the fact I am blissfully married and live in Colorado, I would be eliminated from the list of people this woman markets to, but it doesn’t. She is just blasting her crap to the wind. This kind of marketing causes us all to want to scream and delete everyone’s invitations. Facebook allows you to “add targeting” your events, but most choose to ignore that and they send their invitations to the world.
This morning I followed someone back on Twitter, who had followed me last week. Immediately I got the following tweet:
(Identity has been hidden to protect the ignorant)
Not very personal, considering it’s WHAT WE DO! Duh! If this guy had spend 5 seconds reading my bio or a few tweets, he would know not to send that message (even though it was surely one of those annoying auto-generated messages that make it even worse).
Social Media has shifted. It’s not actually social media that has shifted, it is the audience who has grown weary of the over-hyped, and irrelevant crap we get in our news feeds, Twitter streams and everywhere else we try to hide from bad marketing. If you want people to listen to you and want to learn more about the services or products you offer, you have to first get personal!
Getting personal requires you spend a little more time listening and actually having conversations with people on your social media sites. It requires a little more humanness –a little less automation. Right there I saw most of your eyeballs roll in the back of your head as you thought, “I don’t have more time to listen and I need MORE automation to get all of this done in a day.” And the reality is most of you won’t change the way you are marketing and most of your community members will continue to ignore the generic marketing messages you keep pumping out each day.
It’s almost as if everyone was given a social media quota and as long as you push out one Facebook post and two tweets every day, you can check it off of your list. You are wasting time doing it that way. The first word in social media is SOCIAL.
LIKING TO BE WITH AND TALK TO PEOPLE~ I don’t see where social means, the act of forcing people to read all about you and how great your business is. Remember, people do business with people they LIKE!
Look for ways this week to be less self-promoting, more helpful (even if it’s not a sales opportunity), and get a bit more personal with your social media community.
Here are 3 tips for you to focus on this week to be a bit more likeable and SOCIAL:
1. Listen to strategic conversations
(Use saved search queries for your industry or key phrases your target market may be using in their Twitter conversations. These are wonderful, and natural places for you to listen to others, jump in and provide helpful information and value without coming across as a sleazy sales person!
2. Use geo-fencing if you are a local business
You will find this feature in any third-party app such as Hootsuite or Sprout Social. Twitter also has it and most people don’t know about it. Go to http://Twitter.com/search-advanced and click NEAR THIS PLACE. It will pull all tweets coming from people near you. A great tool for realtors, restaurants, hotels and anyone wanting to connect with locals.
3. Commit 30 minutes to an hour each day engaging in other people’s conversations
Whether you are using Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest, Instagram, etc. to build community and relationships with people you have to spend time liking, commenting and sharing things they are talking about. Just try it for one week. Spend more time on other people’s profiles that you do pumping out content on your own and see what transpires!
I’d love to hear from you. What do you do to get more personal with the people you are connecting with on social media sites? Have you had a brand reach out to you and be more personal? Is that creepy or awesome?