Facebook Tips - How To Create A Facebook Profile - Page 4
Once your profile is set up, add some photos so that people get a sense of who you are. Just remember that your profile will have a lot to do with how people see your business so be mindful of keeping it in line with your branding. Photos of you at a beach BBQ are fine for your friends, but if your business deals with affluent weddings, then potential customers who see your profile may not feel comfortable dealing with you.
Similarly, if you specialise in weddings for new-age spiritualists, then images of you in board-rooms and in suits may come across as "stuffy". As you well know, it's important for your customers to know, like and trust you.
Once you've finished adding personal information (you can always return and update it later if you like) you'll want to starting adding friends. Add real friends that you trust. Be careful not to add anyone who's going to post photos of you drinking or write things on your profile's news-feed that could harm your business. Also add business contacts and satisfied customers! These people will form the foundation of your network.
"Word of mouth" referrals is moving from face-to-face conversations, to people recommending you via Facebook. What this means is that friends aren't catching up over coffee as often but will be more likely to send a link or recommendation via Facebook. So once you have some enthusiastic customers touting your virtues, you'll start to grow your network and people will feel more comfortable doing business with you once they've checked you out on Facebook.
Now, it's a good idea to start adding friends who are the most likely to a) use your services themselves or b) know someone who will need your services soon 0r c) someone who will talk about your services in a positive way.
So, start adding friends of your business contacts - just make sure they're okay with you doing this. The last thing you want to do is alienate your business partners. Also realise that they'll want to add your contacts as friends as well.
Also, start adding friends of your satisfied customers who are a part of the market you're targeting. They'll see that you have a "mutual friend" when you add them which means they'll be much more likely to accept your friend request.
The last step is to do a quick search on Facebook for groups and fan pages in the wedding industry. Join the ones you're interested in - but not the ones belonging to your competition! Customers may get confused if they see you 'supporting' your opposition.
Next, upload photos that are relevant to your niche. In the photos section of your profile, create a photo album with a catchy title that describes the albums' contents. If you do wedding venues, add some photos of the venue, if you do wedding photography, upload some photos you've taken (with the necessary permission, of course), etc... Don't upload all of them at once! It's only important for you to give a taste of what you do.
Include a web address in the caption that lets them know you have more photos on your website. The best part about advertising this way is, it's free!
It's very important that you start a photo album of your work that you add pictures to OVER TIME. Don't add your photos all at once! Why do I stress this? Simple, in the beginning, your network will be much smaller, so don't put all your content up when there's no one there to see it.
You need to ration it out. Add about ten to start with, and then add a few photos each week. Every time you add photos, a note will pop-up in your mini-feed letting people know you've added photos. So if you add photos over time, and not all at once, you'll give more people a chance to see them, comment on them and get into discussions over them.
Facebook is all about "critical mass". This means, once you get enough people talking about you, then you don't need to do much to maintain the conversation. Essentially others are promoting and advertising for you - for free! To get to that point, you need to be savvy and use your content (photos, articles, videos, etc...) wisely.
So now, let me do a minor recap and give you some crucial tips. Here are some super-important
"DO"s and "DON'T"S.
DO add people to your friend network that you can trust.
DO add friends of friends (Re: mutual friends) to help build your network.
DO send them an email saying hello and thanking them for adding you as a friend.
DO spend some time on Facebook posting bits and pieces of content (photos, articles, videos, links, comments on other peoples' profiles, comments on other peoples' photos) to show other Facebook users that you're a human being who's there to interact with people.
DO respond to emails, comments and requests from others.
DO allow some time to get into chats with other people via the Facebook chat tool.
DO let your current customers, friends and business contacts in the real world know that they can find you on Facebook
Now, just as importantly, for each one of these "DO"s, there are "DON'T"s that go with them.
DON'T add people to your friend network that will reflect badly on you or your company. Check your friend list regularly and check the profiles of people you've added to make sure you're not associating with people who can harm you or your company.
DON'T spam people you've just added as a friend. It can be a fine line between spamming and letting someone know something "by the way". You'll be pushing customers away and driving them into the arms of the opposition if you annoy, spam or make them feel "pushed". Remember, Facebook is a place to go to hang out socially.
Pretend it's a friend's house party. It's ok to talk about what you do and even hand out a business card if they seem genuinely interested (the online equivalent being a link to your homepage) but it's not ok to walk around handing out pamphlets or starting every conversation with: "Hi, want to do business together?" This may mean that it takes longer to build trust and customer relationships on Facebook, but in the long run it'll be worth your time.
DON'T spend hours upon hours posting and commenting everywhere. With Facebook, you need to find the sweet spot between "getting yourself out there" and trying not to look like you've got too much free time on your hands because you have no customers. You want to post comments that ignite discussions between others (not "trolling" or "flaming" though - think thought-provoking, not hostile).
You don't want to be writing a long series of comments that becomes a massive monologue with occasional interruption by others. Comment too much, too often or without giving valuable info and you'll come across as lame, bored and desperate. No company or business wants that image.
DON'T always respond to things straight away. This one is not so obvious. In fact, is pretty counter-intuitive, which makes it VERY important. Counter-intuitive tips are the best because they're the ones everyone else will miss and will therefore give you the biggest advantage. So why not respond straight away?
It goes back to the last point about not being too desperate or too eager. Facebook is apart off what's called "Social Media" along with sites like myspace and twitter. With all social media, and especially Facebook, the old rules of the primary school playground apply. Basically, to be one of the cool kids, you have to show people that you value your time more than anything else.
Make sure to do this with all of your interactions on Facebook. Don't spend forever writing comments and don't spend too long chatting with people. When you chat, be sure to mention a time constraint AT THE BEGINNING of the conversation, but make sure they don't feel like you're rushing them or blowing them off.
Tough balance, isn't it?
Something like: "Hey, thanks a bunch for getting in touch, I have to run off in a moment, but let's have a quick chat first, I need a bit of a break, how are you doing?" Of course, if you say you have to go in five minutes, make sure they can't see you logged in five minutes later!
DON'T ever forget that Facebook is a place people go to hang out. Just to reiterate, Facebook is sometimes like a house-party, sometimes like a playground. It's wonderful to be passionate, but don't be overly-enthusiastic or you'll do more harm than good. We all know what it's like when you're at a house party and one of the guests tries to get you to buy their Tupperware product line or to join their cult. On Facebook, don't be that guy.
So that should be enough to get you up and running with your facebook profile. As with anything, you'll need to spend a bit of time checking it out and cruising around the site to get a feel for how it works and to build up your confidence.
Remember, there are over 400 million Facebook users who spend around 55 minutes a day on Facebook! So it's well worth the effort. New skills can require a bit of learning but one of the reasons Facebook has taken off is because it's a very easy website to use.
Take care and I'll see you online.