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Tools & Tips to Leverage Facebook for Your Small Business

If you have a business, big or small, chances are you’ve already attempted to set-up a Facebook page for it. As you should. Social Media, and Facebook in particular, has reshaped the way marketing works in the 21st century.

If Facebook were a country, it would rank third in the world in terms of population, and it contains more personal information on its citizens than any other country. Unlike traditional print advertising, where you have no direct means of knowing who has seen your ad, on Facebook not only are you able to know the names of who “likes” your Facebook page, you will also be able to know where they live, what they like to do, the kind of food they eat, & where they spent their weekend.

Here are some important tips and tools to help you maximize Facebook for your business.

1. Pages, Not Profiles
Are you using Facebook correctly? You may not know it, but knowing the right way to use it could mean the social media future of your business. For starters, make a page, not a profile. Don’t know which is which?  A Profile is what you make when you’re just starting on Facebook. Only after you’ve set-up a profile are you allowed to make a Page. A Profile represents individuals and must be held under an individual name, while Pages allow an organization, business, celebrity, or band to maintain a professional presence on Facebook.  If you don’t abide by this, Facebook has a right to disable your account along with all your photos and friends. Also, Facebook Apps only work on Pages, and you’ll need these apps when customizing your Page to suit your business needs, and best of all, Facebook places no limit on the number of “likes” a Page can have (whereas a profile can only give you up to 5,000 friends).

2. Customize your Welcome Page
Once you’ve set-up your Facebook Page, one of first apps that you can install to make your Facebook stand out is a Welcome Page. The Welcome Page is a large area that acts as your default landing page. Within a set frame width of 520 pixels by 700 pixels, you are able to make a distinct and immediate impression on someone who comes across your Facebook page. A properly done welcome page should convey that you have a company that is dynamic, serious and professional.

3. Start a Discussion
Discussion boards enable people to get their ideas out into the open and lets you know exactly what your customers and others think and want. Go to the “App” section of your Page and you’ll find this feature. If you can’t, simply type “discussion board” on Facebook’s search box.

4. Post a Video
If you have the type of business that requires an animated presentation, or you really want to give a message directly addressing your customers, then you can upload a video. If you already have a Youtube Page, then you can post a link of that Youtube video onto your Page’s wall. If you don’t have a Facebook page, don’t worry. Facebook has a free App for that as well. Simply go to the App section of your page, or type Uploading Video on the Facebook search box.

5. Lastly, Make it Easy for Fans to Contact You
Your website probably has a contact form, but did you know that you can also offer something similar on your Facebook page? The ContactMe form is a customizable Facebook App that allows you to have a contact form where you can add your business name, phone number, email address, and street address. This  contact form is then embedded on your  page so fans and potential customers can easily pass you their contact information and a message.

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