The time has passed
. . . when Facebook was a “good idea” for businesses to try. It’s now pretty much essential.
Facebook keeps changing how to set up Facebook business pages – both on the macro scale with the rollout of Facebook Timeline, and on a smaller scale with new features that are appearing all the time.
To save you time and a lot of head scratching this basic guide breaks it down to make it simple to set up your business or organisation’s Facebook Timeline correctly. Just follow the steps below to get your business on Facebook today.
1) Choose a Classification
Navigate to the following URL in a new tab to create your
business page on Facebook:
Once there, choose from one of the following six classifications:
- Local business or place
- Artist, band, or public figure
- Company, organization, or institution
- Brand or product
- Cause of community
This classification will help you rank for more relevant searches and provide relevant information fields on your page.
After selecting one of the six, choose the category you’re in and fill out your business name (or if you selected one of the other options, your brand or company name). The business option also asks for further location information. Keep in mind that your category and name cannot be changed once your page is created. Type carefully and check before finalising, otherwise you’ll end up having to delete the entire page and start anew.
2) Complete Basic Information
~ Upload Photo
Facebook will now prompt you to upload the main photo for your page. This photo will appear as your icon every time you comment on a post or appear in news feeds. For most businesses it will probably be the company logo. The dimensions of your profile picture are 180pixels X 180pixels. Make sure you upload a square image (add blank space to make it square if necessary), and ideally resize it to 180×180 before uploading it. (This image will shrink on the page to appear as 125X125)
~ About Section
Next, you need to write your ‘About’ information. This brief wording will serve as the main 2-3 sentence description for your company. It will be on your main page, so it is worth taking some time to craft it. Make it descriptive but succinct, and be sure to include a link to your company website as well.
3) Use Your Admin Panel
Your admin panel is the ‘dashboard’ for managing your page. It’s filled with various features and options to optimize your page and facilitate your monitoring of that page.
~ Edit Page
The ‘Edit Page’ option in the upper right provides various options. The first option, ‘Update Info,’ allows you to update the basic information you provided earlier. This will also allow you to enter a description, which is an extended version of the ‘About’ information. Users only see the description by clicking ‘About’ on your business page, so don’t hesitate to add lengthier and more detailed information here.
You can also manage the roles of your page administrators. This allows you to invite various employees from your business to be administrators on your Facebook page in order to respond to comments or messages specific to their function, without giving them complete control over your page. The other options under ‘Edit Page’ allow you to manage your notifications and add page permissions.
~ Build Audience
Don’t invite users right away. First, you want to fill your page with interesting content. Then invite your users/clients to start engaging with that content. Once your page has some interactions, invite more fans and contacts and get them to ‘like’ the page.
4) Fill the Page with Content
~ Cover Photo
The cover photo is a great opportunity to project your business image. The exact dimensions of this cover photo are 851X315. Resize your image to these dimensions before uploading it.
~ Custom Tabs
Facebook allows you to have unlimited tabs on your page. However, only four can appear on the page before the user has to click the arrow to see the rest. Think carefully about what you want to appear in these four slots, whether it’s events, photos, groups, etc.
When posting on your page, be sure to use a variety of content. What images would your audience like to see? What stats would they like to read? What links would they like to click? You can also click the little star to the upper right of any post to highlight it horizontally across your entire page. Not only will this make it look like you have a cover photo on your actual timeline of posts, but it will highlight the page as a milestone in your company history. Use this feature for product announcements, business anniversaries, and other major events pertinent to your brand.
While having an attractive Facebook page is a great investment of your time, to get maximum benefit from it you need to ensure you’re monitoring how people are interacting with it. To the upper right of your Admin panel, you’ll see all the private messages users are sending to your page. Meanwhile, the upper left and centre of the panel shows all the posts users are liking and commenting on. Be sure to respond to comments and messages promptly not just to show your visitors that you care about them, but to avoid any detrimental impact of ignoring these people. One study has shown that failure to respond via social channels can lead to up to a 15% increase in ‘churn rate’ for existing customers.
5) Measure Your Efforts
At this point, you’ve built and shared a Facebook business page that (hopefully) accurately represents your business. Now you need to measure your efforts to ensure you’re making the right marketing decisions on Facebook. Click on the ‘View Insights’ option to the bottom-centre of your Admin panel. You’ll be able to monitor various factors that will help you grow and adapt your Facebook marketing efforts around what’s working and what’s not.
And voila! You have a Facebook business page. Now go and post lots of interesting content, gain new clients and grow a loyal base of fans!