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Is your online presence like a dodgy dentist’s drill?

The Facebook status update was horrifying. Somebody had been in a dentist’s and got out of there as soon as possible after the dentist started calling her teeth “toes”. It was a candid camera moment surely, except there was no Jeremy Beadle or Mike Murphy or one of the Naked Camera team to jump out from behind a curtain. The unhappy patient got out of the dentist’s chair and made a status update enroute to the next dentist. (There were other factors to consider like the dentist’s equipment breaking down and also the fact he thought the patient needed something serious done there and then, when a second opinion later differed completely, opting for a less serious and inexpensive solution).

The most interesting thing about it all is that the disturbed patient in question wrote about the dentist: “The fact that their website is a facebook page should have had me on awares!”

Lately, I had been of the opinion, in a bid to get all the businesses in the town of New Ross online, that Facebook pages would be a good stepping stone to an online presence where businesses didn’t have the resources for a website.

But maybe I was wrong. Because it seems, in this case at least, that your online presence is like a dodgy dentist’s drill. We may be talking about the fact that the dentist’s drill was dodgy but people may think we’re talking about drill belonging to a dodgy dentist. (Nevermind the fact the drill could have cost a lot of money – it’s also important to keep in mind that some organisations do go to a lot of expense in developing a Facebook page, so they’re not as cheap/free/inexpensive as a consumer might think).

Does a cheap (inexpensive) online presence cheapen the opinion clients and potential clients have of you? Is Facebook or a Google Local entry enough? Is it better to be online anyway and get in a few customers that way and risk comments like the above? What do you think?

Facebook profiles are not for businesses

Facebook page Vs Facebook personal profile

Today I received two interesting Facebook invites. One was to be come friends with a business i.e. a business setting up a personal profile on Facebook instead of a Facebook page. Instead of sending a message to the person behind this error, I’m writing this blog post. I want to help them but there’s so many others that require help too.

It’s a common mistake and it is one that has been many a time and is being made over and over again. It’s also been written about before and here’s one good example of a previous post.

Ditch the Facebook profile for business

I’ll keep it short and sweet. Facebook profiles are for people. Facebook pages are for businesses, brands, products, organisations, artists bands and public figures.

The other message I received this morning via Facebook was  from a “friend” that is actually a business asking me to “like” a certain Facebook page – which, yes you’ve guessed it, has the exact same name as the profile. This business is just one of many that’s facing the hassle and realization of moving friends over to pages. Social media migration may be a new business in its own right, separate to social media management. The problem with migration is of course losing a few along the way, so there is that risk, but the benefits outweigh losing a few people that didn’t like your business anyway or don’t know how to use Facebook.

Mistakes you may have made

If you’re in business the reasons you might like to have a Facebook profile rather than a Facebook page to represent your business include:

  • You didn’t realise there’s a difference.
  • You enjoy breaking rules.
  • You find it easier to raise awareness of your Facebook business profile by inviting people to become friends of your business profile.
  • You’re scared that people may not ‘Like’ your new Facebook page for business.
  • You like looking at other people’s holiday snaps and personal info, because chances are they haven’t filtered their privacy settings.
  • You’re scared of success.

Moving over to the other side

Well here are some reasons to go and start migrating your friends on your business profile to your new Facebook business page. (Tip, people are no longer “fans” of Facebook pages – they are given the option “like”.)

  • Your page’s news, status updates, photos, links to interesting articles, competitions, whatever you choose to publish to the people who like your page, will appear in their feed (unless they decide not to receive info from you, but they can do that to anyone’s profile anyway).
  • You will get updated on how people interact with the page through Facebook Insights.
  • You can try and bring people to the page using ads.
  • You may find more people will organically come to your page and like it – perhaps because they saw a friend liked it.
  • You’re playing by the rules.
  • You want to have a social media presence for your business.
  • You don’t want to be limited – profiles can only have a max of 5,000 fans. Pages seem to be unlimited.

So what’s keeping you? Get going. Set up that Facebook page now and start migrating people over. Or get someone who knows how to do it to sort it out for you. Would love to hear any comments or questions!