How to Promote Your Business on Facebook

Discover the best ways to promote your business on Facebook for little or no cost, and allow the power of social networking and help your business grow.

As an entrepreneur, Facebook is an outstanding tool to promote your business. Most people I know use Facebook to share photos, play games and interact with friends online. But once you learn how to promote your business on Facebook, you’ll see it is much more than just a fun way to waste time at work.

Facebook is an interactive stage with millions of potential customers, targetable by common interests or home country or even date of birth. The average user mentality is receptive to new ideas and online content, and is willing to share a wealth of personal information.

Through the genius of social networking, your website or business can quickly develop a presence on the net without a large advertising budget. Here I’ve identified five easy ways to take advantage of Facebook’s incredible reach and supercharge your online business operations.

1. Create a Facebook Page

2. Claim a Unique Username

3. Add a Widget to Your Website

1. Create a Facebook Page

A Facebook Page is a public profile that enables you to share your business and products with thousands of other Facebook users. Anyone can create a page in a few minutes and invite other users to join.

The advantage of having a page to promote your business on Facebook is you can build up a dedicated following. While it depends on your niche (a page for an accountancy firm might be as boring as it gets), giving fans the opportunity to join and share opinions is not to be missed.

What’s more, all your Facebook followers will be alerted to your latest stories and comments. This is just as powerful as a mailing list – if not more, because you can stay in daily contact with fans. (I don’t know about you but I regard daily emails as intrusive and spammy. Yet I’ll willingly listen to daily ramblings of every man and his dog on Facebook.)

With such a powerful communication channel geared to reach thousands of targeted users, I strongly recommend creating a Facebook Page for most types of business, online or offline. It is a fantastic way to create an online community and make your marketing go viral when users amplify your voice to their friends… and their friends of friends… and so on.

How to Create a Facebook Page

Follow this link to create a Facebook Page with on-screen instructions. Make sure you populate your page with enough information about your business or website, including your name (so friends will always recognize you) and your website address and logo.

I also post my Facebook Page link on my personal profile, which encourages my existing friends to join up if they’re interested. A lively community will begin to snowball once you have about 500 followers, and the page will maintain itself. All you need do is check up a few times per week and post your latest thoughts and content to encourage repeat traffic.

Facebook Page vs Facebook Group

Facebook Groups are another kind of public profile often confused with Facebook Pages. There are a few key differences:

Facebook Pages are visible to everyone and indexed by Google. But you can only invite new people to join manually – no bulk invites. You can create a custom URL for your Page, host discussions, add extra applications, message all members via their news feed, gain visitor statistics, share videos and photos, create related events, and promote them with Facebook ads. In short, Pages are generally better for creating long term relationships with your followers.

Facebook Groups are only visible to fans and not indexed by Google. However you can send out bulk invites to friends, who can also bulk invite their friends. You have to use a long tail URL but can host discussions, message all members via private messages, and share videos and photos. So Groups are better for viral marketing, but not necessarily gaining repeat or long term followers.

Finally, when you promote your business on Facebook, keep a reasonable segregation from your personal Facebook activities. In particular, don’t use your personal profile page to create a fan base as this limits you to 5,000 followers – plus you will never be able to draw the line between work and play. All your followers will be able to see your personal photos of family and friends and anyone other photos you are tagged in.

2. Claim a Unique Username

Once you have 25 followers of your Facebook Page, you can claim a Facebook username. This is a custom URL that changes your Facebook Page address from a long tail string to something a bit catchier:

This is a much easier way for people to look up and remember your Facebook Page. It also creates a personalized home on the web for your business (although I strongly recommend this is not your first port of call – a custom website should come first).

You can also refer to this URL anywhere on the internet as a way of directing new fans to your Facebook Page. That includes your own website, in blog comments, on other social network sites, in You Tube videos, and anywhere else you can gain new followers.

3. Add a Widget to Your Website

Aside from Facebook referrals, the next biggest source of new followers will be your website. Facebook offers a number of social widgets to promote your Facebook Page.

I recommend creating a Like Box which can include thumbnails of people who already follow you. (As social creatures, we love to conform and seeing that other people already like something reinforces our urge to follow too.) Depending on how much space you have, your widget can also include a news stream.