Almost every social media channel today can be used as a free or low-cost marketing tool simply by allowing brands to engage with their customers and prospects. In fact, as soon as a new social platform launches, marketers jump into action trying to figure out who’s using it, what their demographics are like, and trying to predict whether or not it would be a good fit for their overall marketing strategy. And, of course, with every emerging channel, a slew of articles come out claiming that these new channels are ripe with the younger demographics and leaving older channels like Facebook in the dust. Well, Facebook might be “old” but it’s still highly relevant and the most used platform in the world. Every type of business can gain benefits from a Facebook presence. And with all the changes coming to Facebook recently, there’s really never been a better time to take advantage of their tried-and-true system to build your brand presence up on Facebook. All you really need to know to get started is the difference between a Facebook Page and a Facebook Group. Then you can decide which fits best into your marketing strategy.
A Facebook Page
A Facebook Page was the answer to spam taking over the personal timelines. They are similar to personal timelines, except, of course, they are designed specifically for marketing. Facebook Pages comes with a number of features not available on personal timelines that make marketing more efficient and easier to track. For example, Facebook Pages offer Page Insights, a tool that allows you to track and measure the efficiency of your posts and the engagement of your followers. Additionally, as your business grows, you can assign team members to manage your page. Finally, there are a variety of third-party apps available that can enhance and expand the page that you just can’t do on your personal profile. And post scheduling brings your productivity up while helping you save and manage your time better.
A Facebook Group
Facebook Groups were developed for one purpose: to help people build a community and connect with other members of that community. So while not specifically intended for promotion, Facebook Groups contribute to brand awareness by giving customers and prospects an outlet where they can communicate directly with that brand – something small businesses can really leverage. Facebook Groups have their own Group Insights that monitor the engagement and activity within the group. They’ll even tell you who your top contributors are in your group (awesome for developing contests, or even just sending out thank you notes!!). There are also a variety of third-party apps you can add to your group to enhance it, such as CinchShare and Sociograph.
Which Works Best?
The only person who can tell you which one works better for your business is you. Think about your specific strategy: are you trying to build brand awareness in an environment that is indexed by Google and can be shared by other people? Then you need a Facebook Page. Are you trying to build a community where your customers and prospects can connect with you on a deeper level through common interests not necessarily related to your services or products? Then you need a Facebook Group.
And if the answer is both, then build both!
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