Saturday, June 23, 2012

Am I alone, or do I expect too much from Facebook!

As part of embracing the social network for spreading the word about your small business and advertising you have to expect to use Facebook. You will want to set up a page for your business or convert a personal page to a business page. Be sure to follow all of the rules required by Facebook for setting up and operating your page. There are additional rules and costs when or if you decide to actually advertise.
Now, with that being said I guess I should explain the obvious…Facebook exists as, basically, an idea. It is nothing tangible and is not an asset you can hold or touch that is unless you have bought stock. But what I am getting at is it is what you put into it and only that, nothing more. Your Facebook business page is no more than a billboard you design, install and maintain on the side of the internet highway.
The main thing to remember is this “billboard” can be seen by everyone and represents who you are and what your business is about. This includes who you like and what others may post for the entire world to see, depending on how you configure your settings. People being who they are can and some will form an opinion of you and your business based solely on who has posted on your site and who you have liked…you should always remember this. They may, also, form an opinion based on the design of your Facebook page, or how well it is done and then decide how good your products or services are based on how well they like your design or how professional it may appear.
If you are new to Facebook it is probably due to you wanting to conform to the many suggestions of how to improve your internet presence for your business. I, for example, never had a personal Facebook page, my wife did, but I worked too many hours. What was left for me was time to handle the typical chores of home ownership, eating and sleeping. I did not have time to sit and spend a lot of time with the typical Facebook parade of games and social networking for friends and long lost acquaintances. But then we started our own business and like I said I wanted to try and use all of the available tools to promote our services. Anyway, I soon learned Facebook is essentially a game where as there is a blank playing board and no description of how to play.
To play the game you have to figure out everything for yourself other than the limited plug and play tools provided. In order for you to achieve ultimate success and “win” you have to be a Developer or enlist the services of one much as you would do to set up your website. I say Facebook is a game because of the limited amount of help and guidelines provided. And the problems start immediately when trying to upload a photo or worst yet your business logo. Some may be lucky and the upload is already the correct size to fit the box. For most it will start the first search for an answer as to how to make it fit properly. You would think this would be found in the rules section…Not! You will find many answers in the forums…people helping people, not the designer helping you and this, I assume, is all part of the “game.” One of the most difficult answers to come by, for me, was why when I went to someone else’s page I could not see their “like” button. I soon found that submitting a question directly to the “helpers” at Facebook resulted in only dead silence. The forums were of little help and I eventually found the answer through an internet search. Eventually I was happy with my page design and started inviting people to “like” my page so I could reach the first milestone of 30 “likes” so it would open “insights”…ooooh! But like the game of life you have to put into Facebook what you get out and you will not get anything unless you try and then continually try to improve. I am sorry if I expected too much help from the creators of Facebook as I was trying to not have to spend so much time on this one small piece of what I needed to do to promote our business. Oh and by the way, I alluded to the answer to my invisible “like” button problem in paragraph four!
Next time: Why small businesses are so essential to our economy or “I have join what?”

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