5 things your business needs to consider before starting a Facebook page

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Facebook has 1.15 billion users. Each of these users spends an average of 8.3 hours a month on the site. You don’t have to be a genius at math to work out that this social media giant is a force to be reckoned with.

It’s no wonder that wherever you look, people are telling you to hop on board the Facebook bandwagon. It makes sense to try and connect with this phenomenal audience.

Facebook can be an extremely powerful tool for small businesses. When approached with care, it can grow your business in ways you never thought possible – if, and only if, it’s done properly.

Before you go charging into the world of Facebook with all your barrels blazing, there are a few things that you need to consider. Pay attention, plan carefully, and you’ll soon be ready to get a piece of the Facebook action.

1. Set Your Goals

As with every marketing initiative, it’s important to know what you want from your efforts. If you know what you want, then after a fixed time, you’ll know whether you’ve been successful. That being said, your goals should be as concrete and measurable as possible.

Do you want to build your brand?

Getting people to recognize your name and associate it with your product or service is a huge part of growing your business.

Are you hoping to attract new customers?

New customers mean more sales. Will you be using Facebook to drive customers to your company website?

Do you want to improve customer service and support sales?

Facebook can be an excellent way to converse with your customers, helping them with their problems and showing them how to use your product or service.

How about engaging your audience?

By building a lasting relationship with your customers you’ll give them a reason to recommend your product or service.

These are all things that can have a real impact on your bottom line, and can be measured using Facebook Insights.

Your goals will also influence the way you as a business interact with Facebook, guiding your tone and your strategy, both of which need to be covered by your social media policy.

2. Write a Social Media Policy

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Writing a comprehensive social media policy is vital to any company that is planning on setting up a Facebook page.Intel has a great social media policy, so take a look for further ideas.

Your policy should cover:

Your tone

How are you going to address your customers? A young, fun brand will sound completely different to a company selling life insurance, and the tone needs to match up with your business. As well as being correct, your tone needs to be cohesive, especially if you’re going to have more than one person posting Facebook updates, which leads to…

Your employees

Who is going to post for your company? The person that you choose needs to be an effective communicator who understands the nuances of your product or service. Your admins should be defined in your social media policy, think carefully about who you choose and be sure to address how your employees discuss your company on their own social media accounts.

Your conduct

Your business’ Facebook page is the digital face of your company, and as such needs to show you in your best light. Your social media policy should outline what is and is not appropriate for your business to discuss online, and whoever is posting for your company needs to know what is expected from them at all times.

A procedure for dealing with negative publicity

As a public forum, it’s possible that disgruntled customers will use Facebook to discuss negative experiences that they may have had of your company. It is vital that you are prepared for this as mishandling negative publicity can be extremely damaging to your business. Aim to respond quickly to determine the cause and solution, and do your best to turn naysayers into brand advocates.