The Business Potential of Facebook - dummies

By Andrea Vahl, John Haydon, Jan Zimmerman

Facebook can help you create exposure and awareness for your business, increase sales, collect market data, enhance your customers’ experience, and increase your position as an authority in your field. However, before you can start to see real results, you must determine why you’re on Facebook.

When it comes to Facebook marketing, there is good news and bad news:

  • The bad news first: Facebook marketing isn’t free. Sure, it doesn’t cost actual dollars to get set up with a presence on Facebook, but it will cost you time and effort — two hot commodities that most business owners have very little of these days.

    You have to account for the time and energy it takes to plan your strategy, set it up, train yourself, execute your plan, build your relationships, and take care of your new customers after you start seeing your efforts pay off.

    And although you don’t need to be tied to Facebook 24/7 to see results, dedicated time and effort are essential when creating a successful Facebook marketing plan, and your time and effort are anything but free.

  • And for the good news: You can streamline your Facebook marketing efforts and eliminate the guesswork that often goes into figuring out anything that’s new and somewhat complex.

Remember this very important fact: You are not in the business of Facebook marketing. Your job is not to become an expert or a master of Facebook. Your job is to be an expert at your business — and Facebook is a tool that you will use to do that. Take the pressure off yourself to master Facebook marketing.

If you take the time to ponder the following questions, you’ll gradually begin to create a road map to Facebook marketing success:

  • Why do you want to use Facebook to market your business? More specifically, what do you hope to gain from your use of Facebook, and how will it help your business?

  • Who is your ideal audience? Get specific here. Who are you talking to? What are the demographics, needs, wants, and challenges of the folks who will buy your products, programs, or services?

  • What do you want your ideal audience to do via your efforts on Facebook? In other words, what feelings, actions, or behaviors do you want your audience to experience?

  • How can you be useful? Finally, remember that Facebook is a friend network where brands are relatively unwelcome. How can you use Facebook to be useful to your customers?