‘What page should I launch – a group or fan page?’
You are not alone in this question and here are some simple ways that might help you decide.
There are two ways on facebook you can advertise your business – a fan page or a group page. Firstly, you should consider how you want to communicate with your audience, i.e. do you want to be an information source or do you want to engage your audience in dialogue? Both groups and fan pages allow you to create discussions and others to reply. Both have a wall for people to write on and allow you to share videos and pictures and require you to manually remove posts as an administrator if something does not meet your standards or purpose for the page.
Here are some points that can help you decide which is best for you:
Example of a fanpage in facebook
- Pages are similar to personal profiles on facebook, but used in a commercial capacity such as a celebrity, public figure, Brand, local business and so on.
- Pages are essentially a profile for your business, which can also be viewed publicly by people who are not users of facebook.
- Businesses can use fan pages to publish information, which is then picked up in status feeds of their fans.
- facebook users can connect with their favourite artists and businesses through fan pages and also show their colleagues/friends what they care about.
- Once a facebook user becomes a fan they then can recommend that page to other friends.
- Pages have two walls, one which the Page owner writes, and one just for fans to write their own messages. Like a normal facebook profile, Pages have tabs that uncover more information.
- Pages are better for companies who want to interact with their fans or customers without having them connected to a personal account, and have a need to exceed facebook’s 5,000 friend cap.
In summary if you don’t want to mix your personal interactions with your business on facebook, then a fan page might be just want you need. Your fan page can be strictly for your online business and will keep all your interactions steered towards your business contacts.
Example of a group page on facebook
- These are generally better for hosting an active discussion and attracting fast attention.
- Groups allow you to send out bulk invitations (for instance, you can ask all of your friends to join the group) and any of your group members can also invite their friends. If you have “friends” on your facebook page who are acquaintances or just share common interests this is a good way to market.
- Groups are not public, but allow you to send messages that show up in a person’s Inbox, making more direct communication.
- Group pages allow you to set other administrators to see who is requesting to join the group. If you post something to the group page, it will also show up on your personal wall. Some people don’t like this because it ties them to their businesses, but this can be useful in creating a “person behind the online business” feeling with your customers. You have more control over participants and permissions with group memberships.
- A group, however, has a limitation of 5,000 members if you wish to send a message. They are generally considered to be best for more personal interaction.
In summary groups are great for organising on a personal level and for smaller scale interaction around a cause.
Regardless of which one you choose (of course, you can have both), be sure to update regularly, keep your audience engaged and offer something of value. If you use your fan page or group purely for promotional reasons, you are far less likely to build loyalty, and there’s a good chance that your members and friends won’t be returning to your pages anytime soon.