by Mielle Sullivan, Janus Networks

The first step is to set up a Fan Page. There are a couple of different ways to promote your business in Facebook, but the most common is the Business Fan Page. I recommend you go with this over the Business Account, because it has less restrictions.

Why should you set up a Business Fan Page? I know what you are thinking–that you already have a website and blog and Facebook is just place where 20 somethings post photos and throw sheep. Wrong! It’s best to think of Facebook as a sort of Internet in side the Internet. Basically, a HUGE amount of people of all ages are spending a HUGE amount of time on Facebook doing all manor of things including shopping for goods and services. Why wouldn’t you want to be there too?

Best of all, Google thinks highly of Facebook fan pages in search results.

Creating a Fan Page takes just a few clicks, but you should add as much content as possible including photos, logos, videos, descriptions and links to your website and blog. You’ll also have to keep your Fan Page active with fresh content, but short and sweet is fine.

You will want to pick the best Facebook URL for your business. Once you pick it, you can never change it. Almost all Fan Pages are This is fine and may, in fact, be perfect for your business. But you might want to consider adding the city where you are located and some other word about what type of business you are. For instance, if you are a hair salon called Snips in San Francisco, consider: or something similar.

You will want to connect your Facebook and twitter accounts so that your tweets will appear as status updates on your Fan Page. You should also engage your Facebook community individually at times, because they are different mediums with different kinds of engagement and you don’t want your Fan Page to be just your twitter stream.

So now you’ve got a compelling Fan Page, how do you get fans? The first step is to leverage the customers, contacts and promotional tools you have already. Put a Facebook badge on your website, tweet about your Fan Page every so often, tell your customers in your newsletter, put the URL on your business cards and promotional materials. Send an email asking your contacts to join: tell them about all the content you have put up and ask them to check it out. It is also good to encourage your customers to join you on Facebook and write reviews. A simple “Hey, if you enjoyed doing business with us, writing a us a review on Facebook would be great.” will suffice. You can also offer discounts or extras to customers who write reviews.

The last step is to set up a hyper targeted Facebook ad campaign. Facebook ads work similar to Google Adwords, but you bid on targets (the best audience of your ad) instead of keywords. You can select targets by location, age, sex, education, occupation and more. I recommend starting with a small budget, a tight
target and several different ads. See what happens. Experiment. Learn and eventually increase your budget.

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