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Does Your Business Really Need Facebook?

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In the age of social media more and more companies are turning to Facebook to promote their product instead of relying on their website only. You now see TV ads urging viewers to ‘find us on Facebook’ or ‘search Facebook for…’ We dug out some stats and pieced them together in a bid to discover whether Facebook was a help or a hindrance.

Here’s what we found:

  • 41 – 50% of Facebook users log on daily
  • The average dwell time is 11 minutes
  • Nearly half of 18 – 34 year-olds use Facebook first thing in the morning
  • 28% use it before getting out of bed
  • 48% of young people get their news via Facebook

Given the popularity of Facebook, as a business you really want to have a presence there, and most importantly, you want people to engage with your page. User participation leads to:

  • Increased usage of our Facebook page
  • Increased emotional connection to the brand and the online experience
  • Strengthened social connections to other users
  • Depth to conversations/debate
  • Improved breadth of content

As the 2011 Social Media Marketing Industry Report found, the benefits of social media are not to be ignored:

- 72 percent of respondents said social media increased website traffic

- 62% had improved search rankings

- 59% forged new partnerships as a result of social media engagement

- 48% experienced better sales

- 59% of self-employed respondents and 58% of small businesses experienced a reduction in marketing costs

- Respondents were twice as likely to get an increase in leads using social media

The facts above make it clear to anyone who ever cast a doubt that social media platforms, especially Facebook (being the biggest one), can actually help improve your business. But beware – social media is a double-edged sword: it can be very valuable but it can also be detrimental to your company if not used correctly.

Here are five telltale signs that a business page isn’t doing what it should be:

1.            It doesn’t instigate conversation

2.            It doesn’t encourage interaction

3.            It doesn’t cross-communicate/cross-promote

4.            It doesn’t have a vanity URL (i.e. facebook.com/arsenalfc)

5.            Businesses haven’t linked up all their social media

In short, if you are going to use Facebook for your business, make sure that you’re doing it correctly. Engage your audience, and welcome questions and feedback – good or bad. If you set up a social media community and leave it to idle, it will work against you.

What’s your experience with Facebook Business Pages? Share it with us below.

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