Unless you live under a rock, you’ve no doubt heard of Facebook. As much as I love Twitter, Facebook is many times larger than Twitter (based on number of users registered), so to ignore Facebook for it’s potential to reach your target market is unwise.
Yet if you are like me, and many others, you log on and find goofy quizzes and applications plastered all over your personal wall by well meaning family and friends who have more spare time that you realized. Not very professional.
This is where Facebook ‘Fan’ Pages come in to save the day. While on your personal wall you may be staving off Care Bear Hugs from Aunt Martha; on your Facebook Fan Page, it should be all business.
Personal vs. Business on Facebook
Just as I have a 3 point criteria before I follow anyone on Twitter, I also have put in place criteria for Facebook and those whom I choose to ‘friend’.
Personal Profile: Keep it Family and Friends Only
My Facebook personal profile is where I friend all my family and personal friends (whether real-life or online friends) that I want to keep up with and find out what’s going on in their world. For me, this is the personal side of Facebook. So don’t be offended if I don’t accept your friend request, or do not choose to ask you to be my friend.
I have chosen to use Twitter to receive status updates for the majority of my business networking contacts. The 140 character short bursts are perfect for that. Follow me on Twitter.
Facebook Fan Pages: All Business
Facebook Pages, also called Fan Pages, is where you can best represent your business on Facebook. At the top of your Facebook Page, there is a button for people to ‘Become a Fan’, they click it and they have subscribed to your page.
With Facebook Pages you send messages to your ‘fans’/subscribers, you can have a discussion forum, they can post on your wall and of course there are many apps you can add to expand the features and functions of your Facebook page. Think of your Facebook Page as a mini-web site within Facebook.
How to Get a Facebook Page and a Vanity URL
Okay – so I’ve answered the basic ‘why’ behind getting a Facebook Fan Page, but ‘how’ do you get one, and more importantly what’s a Vanity URL and how to do you get one of those?! Read on…
Step 1: Log into Facebook, scroll to the bottom of the page and click Advertising (see image)
Step 1 – Click Advertising
Step 2: Choose Pages at the top of the Advertising page.
Step 2 – choose Pages
Step 3: Create Your Page by clicking the Create a Page button.
Step 3: Create a Page
Step 4: Create Your Page part two, fill in the initial page details.
Part 4: fill in initial page details
Step 5: Page settings. Now that your page is created, adjust your page settings, setup whatever features you want for your page, install apps you feel appropriate and get your page just as you want it. Then you will need to Publish your page, once you have it tweaked the way you want. Once published – it’s ready to advertise and get some fans!
Step 5: Adjust your Page settings.
Get a Vanity URL When You Reach 100 Page Fans
What is a vanity URL? http://facebook.com/GenesisBlogging is a my vanity Facebook page URL. Nice and easy to give to people to send them to my Facebook page.
That’s a whole lot better than the old, http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?sid=44ec8d40f1460427164b8f658a73e434&id=1011518228&hiq=traci%2Cknoppe#/pages/GenesisBloggingcom/73781029905?ref=s that it used to be! I mean honestly – how would you like to have to give that URL out to folks?! Not!
This the beauty of the vanity URLs with Facebook (and you can get a vanity URL for your personal profile, as well as your fan page). Before you can get a vanity URL for your fan page, you need to have at least 100 fans.
If you have a lot of friends on Facebook, you could just post status update on your wall and ask your friends to become a friend of your new page. That might help get you enough friends; posting on Twitter will also get you some friends.
However, there is a nice chat room at SavorChat created just for this purpose. Facebook Fan Pages SocialBees is the room. You can join in the chat room there, find pages you like and fan those, and folks will return the favor and fan your page. Have your current long-ugly fan page link ready to post in the chat room.
Avoid Fanning Frenzy: Do not get fan fever and blindly fan every page in the chat room without thinking! I only fan pages in the chat room that I would fan outside of the chat room. No different. Yes, the purpose of the room is to try to get 100 fans to get your vanity URL, but it’s also a way to find and connect with other people you would not otherwise find. I’ve found some awesome new pages while in the chat room – but I did not fan everyone. Remember, clicking the fan button on a page is saying you like the page, the product, the cause, the person, the business and/or what it represents. You are a ‘fan’. If you can honestly answer that question – then click the button. If you can not – do not fan the page just to try to get a fan in return!
Once you have your 100 fans, go to http://www.facebook.com/username and follow on the onscreen prompts to obtain your Vanity URL for your Facebook Page. Note: You will need a mobile phone to verify your account and receive a password, as they send you a text message for this.
Once you complete the steps, you have a new vanity URL. It just takes a few minutes to do. Very worth it.
Do you have your vanity URL for Facebook yet? For either your personal profile or your Facebook fan page? Did you get the name you wanted? Did you stay up til midnight when they launched the vanity usernames to get your name?! Comment below and let me know your experience.