10 Reasons To Use Facebook For Business
Both Facebook and Mashable put monthly Facebook visitors at 1 billion, from December 2012 to February 2013.
Visitors spend an average of 28.8 minutes per day within Facebook’s portals, hanging out with friends and acquaintances, and looking for entertainment or news. Its daily reach is an enormous 43%, with use and popularity still on the rise.
But wait – just because it’s the most popular social network in the world, is that any reason to use it for business purposes? Isn’t it primarily social? Won’t your voice get drowned out amid all those millions of users?
Great questions. Let’s see exactly what Facebook can do for you and your business – and why you should use it for that purpose.
1. Facebook is a Community
For a staggering number of people, posting their daily status update and seeing who has replied to previous posts is the most important action of their day – whether or not they openly admit it. And that goes for some surprisingly outgoing people, totally busting the supposition that Facebook is for introverts. (One survey last year revealed that people rank Facebook friends on a par with their local, immediate friends.)
Facebook is here to stay. It is a part of our times. But what does this friendship connection mean to business?
Mainly that people nowadays do not buy on product value alone: They buy on the basis of social proof. Google states that 70% of American consumers don’t purchase until they’ve read formal or informal reviews.
As far back as 2010, Ecoconsultancy stated: “81 percent of respondents said they’d received advice from friends and followers relating to a product purchase through a social site; 74 percent of those who received such advice found it to be influential in their decision.”
Communities create trust. And that’s when people buy.
2. People are There
“There” being “on Facebook”, that is.
Facebook is part of almost everyone’s day. Stats site Alexa.com shows it as reaping approximately 139.2 million visitors per month – and that’s in the U. S. alone. (Mashable put monthly visitors at 1 billion in a February 2013 infographic.)
82% more visitors visit Facebook from outside the U. S. It’s the world’s most popular social community… with the longest engagement time per visit at an average of 28.88 minutes per person.
When you stop and actually visualize this, that’s an astonishing thought. (For example, one documentary on Mongolia showed two young Mongolian schoolboys accessing Facebook in their felt-covered Yurt.)
There is no point writing about a product on your blog on Monday mornings if 99% of your entire online net base (including subscribers) are busy chatting away on Facebook. Well, there’s a point – you can write a more in-depth product review or point out more benefits on your blog… but first, use Facebook to drive people to that carefully-crafted post.
3. Facebook has Pages
Facebook also allows you to create dedicated Pages for your business or any of its products. If you run a Virtual Assistant business called “VAs-R-Us” you can have a business page for VAs-R-Us. If you write a book, you can create an Author page for that book and any others you write. And Facebook itself allows you to create as many pages as you like.
But here’s the part nobody tells you: If you forget that Facebook is, above all, social – if you are too hard-sell on your Facebook Page – you will find your audience tuning out to what they feel is endless promoting. Your Page has to have value. Share needed tips, news and knowledge. Include dazzling or touching graphics or videos. Entertain, captivate and capture.
And above all, interact and exchange… opinions, news, life.
To fulfill these conditions, always to make the Page about your target audience – their needs, interests, feedback, comments and opinions – not about your need to sell 5,000 units by Friday.
4. Facebook Pages Make Your Business Feel Real
A Facebook Business Page can give identity to intangible entities like businesses or services. You can brand anything through them: Your signature product, your business’ “voice”, your business culture – even yourself.
Seeing it in print makes it feel real to your viewer. People quickly begin to identify you as an author on a sub-conscious level, as well as consciously.
Your book then becomes, psychologically-speaking, a “real book”.
And people will begin to recommend your book – even when they haven’t read it themselves.
5. Facebook Pages are versatile.
You can do all sorts of things to help enhance your business branding. You can customize the Cover background, insert your Profile Photo, write a powerful “About Me” blurb. (That’s just for starters.)
Facebook Pages integrate with other social networks, via apps. You can add Facebook apps – and then make those apps appear as a menu choice by creating custom 111 pixel X 74 pixel tabs for your apps.
From your Facebook Page, you can also:
• Run contests
• Feature quizzes, surveys and polls
• Feature your website URL in your “About Me” section
• Gather “Likes”
• Claim and operate under your vanity URL, making it easy for your Page – and business – to show up in Facebook search results
• Install custom app covers to your tabs, showing anything you like
• Run sponsored posts
• Watch people share your posts (and sponsored posts) – unsolicited!
And that’s just a taste of Facebook Page power!