The following article is based on an excerpt from The Digital Handshake: Seven Proven Strategies to Grow Your Business Using Social Media (www.thedigitalhandshake.com).
Much the same way a power company connects homes and businesses with electricity, Facebook is a "social utility" designed to facilitate connections between people as well as businesses.
Accordingly, it can be highly useful as a business tool. This article addresses various ways that businesses can market using Facebook.
Facebook Public Profile
A Facebook Public Profile (aka a Facebook Page) is an ideal place for businesses to establish a beachhead within the social network. It is, also, one of the most overlooked.
I've noticed that many companies use other parts of the platform (Groups and personal profiles, in particular) to set up a presence, but they never bother to create a Public Profile.
One possible reason may be that Facebook lists Public Profiles under the advertising category, which may lead people to believe it is a premium feature. It's not. Businesses can set up a Public Profile at no cost.
Facebook Public Profiles, which mimic user profiles in design and function, allow users to express their support of your business by adding themselves as fans. They can write on your Wall, upload photos and videos, and join other fans in expressing opinions on topics introduced in discussion groups.
Paul Chaney is a veteran digital marketing consultant, trainer, writer, editor, and author of four books, including The Digital Handshake: Seven Proven Strategies to Grow Your Business Using Social Media. Reach him via firstname.lastname@example.org.
LinkedIn: Paul Chaney