I often work with writers and business owners who really put the effort into using Facebook to market their book or business. They post content regularly, taking time to ensure it is interesting and engaging. They have built up their audience, and secured hundreds of friends………..and simply don't realise that all that hard work could disappear overnight!
Facebook Profiles versus Pages
Why? Many people fail to realise that there are two areas to Facebook: personal profiles – for use by individuals; and business pages – for use in promoting any commercial product, brand, organisation or community. Profiles have Friends. Pages have Likes. Profiles must bear the name of an individual. Pages use a product or company name. The official Terms and Conditions from Facebook state the following:
- You will not create more than one personal account.
- You will not use your personal timeline primarily for your own commercial gain, and will use a Facebook Page for such purposes.
Why Does It Matter?
Apart from the stated conditions of use for Facebook, there are some very good reasons why you should never use a personal profile to promote your book. There are many examples of Facebook deleting personal profiles which bear a product name. But, more importantly, there are a number of features that can be used on Facebook pages, which are simply not available through profiles. So, if you do continue to promote your book via a personal profile, you are missing out on a range of features which may just help. Here are just 5.
1. Search Engine Optimisation (SEO)
A Facebook page will specifically represent your books, and will be indexed by Google. Consistent use of your author page, and careful inclusion of key words and phrases, may well improve your Google rankings. Facebook profiles, however, are not indexed by Google.
2. Facebook Insights
Once you have 30 ‘likes' on your author page, you can use Facebook Insights. These are useful statistics on the demographics, numbers, and interactions of all the people viewing your page. These will help you find out when your audience is online, and the best time to post your content. This is not available on a profile.
3. Facebook Advertising
An author page allows you to promote your book using Facebook Ads. You can target as broad or narrow an audience as you wish, track the results, and manage your advertising spend through Facebook Ads. Profiles simply don't allow this.
4. Create amazing Applications on your Page
You can add 3rd party applications to your author page to create things such as contact forms, opt-in boxes to capture email addresses of readers; landing pages to arouse interest in your book; links to your website or blog; and promotions or free downloads for your readers.
5. Promote your Page
Facebook pages allow you to create ‘Like Boxes' and buttons which you can place on your website, so that customers can simply click on the button and be taken straight to your author page. This is an invaluable way of promoting your page and your book, which is not available on a profile.
If you have set up the marketing for your book on a personal profile, do not despair! It is possible to ‘convert' your profile to a page, transferring your ‘friends' to the new page, where they will become ‘likes'. Just follow the instructions here. However, be aware that only your profile picture will also be transferred – no other content will be carried over.
So, now you know the difference, make sure your book is being properly represented on a Facebook page – NOT a profile.
Did you make this mistake when you started out on Facebook? How did you overcome it?