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How-to Guide to Create a Facebook Fan Page

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An updated article can be found here.

Over 500 million people across the world are using Facebook to connect to family and friends. It has become the number one online destination surpassing time spent on all of Google’s products combined. For a long time, businesses have known the importance of being ranked well on search engines. Now they are interested in reaching out and being noticed via a different method – and its called social marking. Businesses have created Facebook Pages to do just that. If you haven’t considered Facebook, now might be the time. We have created a tutorial on setting up your first Facebook Page for your company.

Step 1: Log out…

First, make sure you are logged out of your personal profile. Yes, Facebook Pages can be created via a personal profile, but a few features will be missing – including the ability to select Fans as guests when creating events. In addition, if an employee creates the Page using their personal profile, they will take all your fans with them when they depart from the company.

Step 2: Click Create a Page…

Visit www.facebook.com to get started. Towards the bottom right click Create a Page.

When visiting Facebook, look for the Create a Page link on the bottom right.When visiting Facebook, look for the Create a Page link on the bottom right.

Step 3: Create an Official Page…

Preceding the homepage is ‘Create a Page’. Here we will have to make some important decisions before we get to far ahead. Community pages are more for causes – because you’re a business you will want to choose from the ‘Official Page’ section.

The Create a Page provides the choice between a Community Page and an Official Page.The Create a Page provides the choice between a Community Page and an Official Page.

Step 4: Create a Page for a…

On the next screen, it will introduce a few options for categorizing your company. You might be confused between choosing Local, Brand, Product, or Organization. Ford Mustang would be a brand or product. It’s one of many products that Ford Motor Company makes. Most small businesses will choose from ‘Local businesses’. If you feel that one of your products is worthy of it’s own Facebook Page, than go right ahead.

Note: Be careful of creating too many Facebook Pages, as you only have so much time in your day to manage them. Part of social marketing is interacting with your fans.

Choose between Local, Brand, Product, Organization, Artist, Band or Public Figure for your Facebook Page. Choose between Local, Brand, Product, Organization, Artist, Band or Public Figure for your Facebook Page.

Step 5: Choose a sub-category wisely …

When Local business is checked, a drop-down menu will appear with additional items to sub-categorize your company. Choose wisely because you might not be able to change it once the Facebook Page has been created. Select one and proceed to the next step.

From the Local business, choose an item that closely represents your company.From the Local business choose an item that closely represents your company.

Step 6: Name your Facebook Page…

Naming your Facebook Page can be the simplest or most difficult part. Usually, businesses stick with their company name. Because you cannot change your name later, it is recommended to choose wisely and double-check your spelling. The name will appear in your Facebook URL and be indexed by search engines. Make sure to review the Facebook Terms and then click Create Official Page.

Choose a name thats appropriate for your Facebook Page. Choose a name that’s appropriate for your Facebook Page.

Step 7: Create Official Facebook Page…

Next, a pop-up will appear. Read through the details and then click Create Page to create an official Facebook Page for your company.

Click Create Page to create an official Facebook Page for you company. Click Create Page to create an official Facebook Page for you company.

Step 8: Create a Facebook Account…

And you thought you were done! I guess not. On the Create a Facebook Account page, it is very important to check I do not have a Facebook account. Remember, this is to prevent employees from running off with the Page when they depart or retire from your company. Plus, it will come in handy if ownership of the company changes.

Check ‘I do not have a Facebook account’ for best practice. Check ‘I do not have a Facebook account’ for best practice.

Step 9: Email, password and the infamous CAPTCHA…

To finish the ‘Create a Facebook Account Screen’, fill in a valid email address, password, birthday, and the words spelled out in the CAPTCHA. Then check I have read and agree to the Terms of Use and Privacy Policy followed by clicking Sign up Now!

Fill in the required information to complete the setup of your new Facebook Page. Fill in the required information to complete the setup of your new Facebook Page.

Step 10: Confirm your email address…

Thanks for signing up for Facebook! The next step will require you to confirm your email. Go to your inbox and find the email that was sent.

Go to your inbox to receive the confirmation email.Go to your inbox to receive the confirmation email.

Step 11: The email…

The email will look like the following screenshot. Click on the link Facebook provided.

Click on the confirmation link in your email to complete your sign up.Click on the confirmation link in your email to complete your sign up.

Step 12: Are we there yet?

Yes, congratulations! Well, it’s a pretty boring Facebook Page. Now might be the time to upload an image, logo or photo and add basic information such as a business address and company website address. Before proceeding, click the Wall tab to see how the Page will appear to your visitors.

Click the Wall tab to see how the Facebook Page will appear to your visitors.Click the Wall tab to see how the Facebook Page will appear to your visitors.

Step 13: The basic skeleton of a Facebook Page…

Quite plain, wouldn’t you think? We recommend branding the page with a logo and adding company information. Go back to the Get Started tab to start modifying the page.

What the Wall tab looks like right after the Facebook Page has been created.What the Wall tab looks like right after the Facebook Page has been created.

Step 14: Look around for ideas…

Many books are written about Facebook. In addition, there are many online tutorials that provide tips on enhancing a Facebook Page. Plus, it is recommended to look at some other Pages to get ideas. Here are a couple companies that take full advantage of all the features available.

Papa Johns Pizza Facebook PagePapa John’s Pizza’s has a large advertisement to inform visitors they are a sponsor of the NFL.
Sears Fan PageSears Facebook Page is enticing visitors to ‘Like’ the page to have a chance of becoming a winner.
Pepsi - Refresh EverythingVisit Pepsi – Refresh Everything to watch video and learn about the Pepsi Refresh Project.

Conclusion

Creating a Facebook Page is the start of your social marketing adventure. After you feel comfortable with the look and feel, the next step is to go out and find fans. Promote it on your website with a Like Box along with a link back to the page. Social marketing means you interact with your fans. This could include providing resourceful information, coupons, video, photographs, or starting a discussion within your Facebook Page. To be more successful, search for resources and subscribe to websites that provide tips on social marketing. Good luck!

IE6 – Is it Worth the Expense?

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Lately, our team here has been discussing Microsoft Internet Explorer 6. IE6 was a top-of-the-line browser way back when it first appeared ten years ago. Since then a lot has changed. It doesn’t support much of the new technology (HTML5), is cumbersome, and recently has been criticized for its security flaws. In the last year Facebook and YouTube have announced that they’re cutting back on IE6 support. This year Google will slowly phase out support. This will allow these companies to stay with the latest trends and reduce the extra expense. Now that the big companies are moving is it time for your company to drop support for IE6? Let’s find out…

How to determine if your company should keep your site compatible in IE6…

Developing and maintaining websites that render properly in IE6 cost your company money. For smaller or pre-existing sites the cost would be minimal. When considering upgrades, additions or a brand new site get separate quotes for IE6 support. These types of modifications can be costly.

For clients with pre-existing sites you might want to know if your development team should keep providing support. The best place to find the answer is to look at your analytics. A popular tool used by many is Google Analytics. Google provides the whole kit and caboodle of statistics about your website’s visitors. There you can find how many of your visitors are using Internet Explorer 6.

Before closing the book on IE6 find out how loyal your users are…

Budgets, demographics, revenue, expenses, and much more makes each business different. Before coming to a conclusion review your analytics and consult with the development team. Cutting costs could cause a backlash and hurt revenue. Look at the following example of a sales agency. Help them decide if their IE6 visitors are loyal and worthy of the expense.

Google Analytics Browser Version 6Using Google Analytics you can view how many visits are coming from IE6 users.

The above example represents a sales agency. Their agents work on commission and prefer not to miss out on any opportunities. In the last 30 days over 2,000 visits have come from IE6 users. On average, they spend over four minutes while visiting almost eight pages each. They seem to have a loyal following and it would justify keeping the site compatible with Internet Explorer 6.

What you should do…

In 2010 changes are going to happen quickly. Keep an eye on your stats. With Google Analytics you can view a month-to-month comparison. Watch as IE6 users become fewer and fewer. Think about setting a goal and when the numbers dip down to a certain level then drop all support.

Conclusion

Becoming more familiar with analytics and IE6 will help you make some wise expense decisions. Maybe this year will be the year your team discusses Internet Explorer 6? Us, along will many other developers can’t wait until the day IE6 is resting in peace (RIP).