So You've Put Up a Facebook Page, Now What? 10 Tips for Business Community Building on Facebook

Facebook is now the world's largest online social network, with over 130 million users and still growing at an unprecedented rate. Thousands of companies large and small have now created Pages, and are trying to build communities of fans. Thousands more are running Facebook ads that appear beside personal profiles, home pages, and status feeds. Still, most companies aren't doing it right. They're either running irrelevant ads that direct users away from Facebook's site, throwing up a Page without knowing how to grow it, or both. Now, with forthcoming changes to Facebook's link structure profoundly affecting Google's natural search results, the need to have your Facebook strategy on target is key. We at theKbuzz believe there are vast, positive implications for building a business's Facebook Page correctly, in a way which benefits a company's marketing, public relations, human resources, customer service, and customer relationship management, to name a few. So, to help get you moving in the right direction, we present: 10 Tips for Facebook Business Pages Success

1) Add HTML and Applications to your page. Facebook is so user-friendly and has made it so user friendly to add HTML and free applications to your page, that even a techie idiot like me can do it. Add applications with relevance to your business, such as FBML, Reviews, YouTube Video Box, etc. and your fans will want to actually use your Page, not just visit it. 2) Add RSS feeds. You don't even have to write your own blog- there's tons of content in virtually every field out there already, so just syndicate news and blog feeds directly to your Facebook page that have relevance and meaning to your customers and potential customers. 3) Run Facebook Social Ads. Don't just run ads linking off Facebook's site, run social ads which link back to the Facebook fan page. I had the pleasure of talking today to AJ, a member of Facebook's sales team, who believes as strongly as I do that Social ads are the most important part of any Facebook ad spend. It's all about building a community, through trusted friends, not just targeted ads. 4) Update content regularly. You can't build a community if the page is the same every time people visit it. Create discussion topics, ask questions, and solicit feedback from your fans. Listen to them. The old credo was "If you build it, they will come." The new credo is, "If you listen and respond, they will come back." 5) Reach out to Admins of Facebook groups of key target customers. No, DON'T SPAM THEM. But if you can provide them with value, and start a conversation, and they start a conversation with their Facebook group, it's worth the outreach. 6) Create special offers for Facebook Fans only: 10% off, special reveal codes, Buy 1 get 1 free, contests, etc. Show your fans you value them, and they will become super fans. 7) Thank fans for posting reviews, on the wall, in discussions, etc. Nothing is appreciated more than a personal thank you, in any situation, including Facebook - especially if it comes directly from a huge company or brand. 8. Create a new domain(s) that link(s) directly to your Facebook Page. Take your brand or company, and create and direct "BrandOnFacebook.com" directly to your facebook pages. Thanks to Mari Smith for this idea! 9) Link, Link, Link to your Facebook Page. From your company's main website, from your email signature, from your blog, and wherever you have a web presence - it can't hurt to link your Facebook Page. 10) Begin with your current customers. There's no need to reinvent the wheel to draw in fans before you've contacted all of your current customers whose email addresses you already have. In fact, the best method is to cross-reference customer email addresses direct on Facebook, and then message them right there. Make it as easy as possible for your current customers to become Facebook Fans.

Above all, it is most important to give before you plan to receive. Social media communities, including Facebook, are all about providing value to customers and potential customers. I know it's scary in a down economy to do marketing ventures that may not immediately lead to increased sales, but if you build a community, and do the right things for your customers and potential customers, the increased sales will eventually come. Now get to it!

For more tips on how to improve your social media presence, download our free Beginner's Guide to Community Management here