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Building Community On Facebook

Facebook is now the world’s largest online social network, with over 500 million users and still growing at an unprecedented rate. Thousands of companies have now created Fan 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. However, many companies have failed to master the management of a true fan page. Here are a few pointers that will help companies build fans organically, engage fans, and build community.

Managing The Page

Companies, small or large, must set aside some everyday or every week to manage their fan page.  This will enable the company to consistently build brand awareness and create regular communications with current and potential customers. This will in turn increase loyalty. In order to build a successful fan page I suggest companies and encourage the fan page where appropriate. Suitable locations are main website, a post on Twitter, a post on the company’s blog, and a small reminder at the bottom of email marketing messages.

Sharing Information

Facebook is built on the principle of sharing. So it is important that companies share useful information with fans/customers that will help them achieve objectives, have fun, or increase knowledge. The sharing of relevant information will add value to the company’s brand and increase the company’s reputability. A fan page is the perfect place to share information about new products, trends, and company updates. However, remember your best fans are busy fans. Do not overwhelm them with messaging or they will remove you from their fan listing.

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 philosophy was “If you build it, they will come.” The new philosophy is, “If you listen and respond, they will come back.”

Recognize Fans

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.

Connect with Other

Connect with others by becoming a fan of their businesses and groups.  Share their information on your fan page and share your information on their fan pages.  This will enable lots of visibility and build communities quicker.

Start a Discussion

Start a discussion on your fan page and talk about what’s important to the community.  Share resources relating to this discussion and encourage everyone to participate by posting comments and messages on your wall.

If you follow these rules I will assure you fan page success. Remember success is not in numbers, but quality fans who translate into customers.

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