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Facebook: Profiles, Fan Pages, and Groups… Oh My!

Services for Real Estate Pros with IRES LLC

GREAT post about Facebook profiles, including how to add your Active Rain feed to your Facebook page.

Original content by Cheryl Waller, MBA NMLS# 1990881 SL# 3516742

Maybe you are new to Facebook and maybe you are not, but maybe you still wonder whether you should add a Fan page, start a group or even bother with any of it at all. I mean what’s the difference anyway? Right?

Actually… Quite a bit.


Let’s start with personal profiles

First and foremost; if you are currently using your personal profile to promote your business by using a business name and/or logo on your personal profile…. STOP! Personal profiles are for individuals, not businesses. Not only is it against Facebook terms of service, it also detracts from the whole idea of being ‘social’. Guys, really? It’s not called ‘Logobook’ or ‘Brandbook’. Personal profiles need to have a picture of you. No and ifs or buts… use your college photo if you want, that’s fine…

Your personal profile is the first profile you set up on Facebook. (In very rare instances there is a business management account, but I will not go into that with this post)With your personal profile you post an image of yourself, post information about you and share pics, links, information etc with other friends in your network. Personal profiles are only allowed up to 5,000 friends and pages combined.  So that means if you are a fan of 100 pages, your friend limit is 4,900. Become a fan  (now this has been changed to ‘like’ a page) of 200 pages and your friend limit is 4,800. You get the idea. Basically, you can only have ‘connections’ to 5,000 people, entities or brands COMBINED on a personal profile.

Why would you want 5,000 friends? Ok, this is where the lines get a little burred between business and personal. You can also get your account deleted by Facebook if you go about it the wrong way or try to do it too quickly. Having 5,000 friends in the same industry as you is a quite powerful business tool. I won’t get much into it in this post, but start seeking out 10-20 people inside and outside your industry each day and send a friend request with an introduction. Try to make as many professional connections as you can. Believe me 5,000 people that play Farmville is NOT going to help you in the long run.

That’s about as far as I am going with personal profiles for this post. Right now, if you are currently using a business logo, brand, trademark or emblem on your personal page, I highly suggest you jump over to FaceBook right now to upload a personal  photo and make sure that you are using your real name and not your business name …then come back to read the rest of this post.

See Also How to Avoid Being Scammed on Facebook | Verifying Applications


Fan Pages

Fan pages are for real businesses, brands, artists or public figures and essentially are their own identity. You must be an official representative of that entity in order to create a page.  Once a page is created it essentially IS its own person. Pages cannot be publically tracked back to the creator of the page or the admins unless you choose to reveal that on your page. Pages allow you to update fans by demographic, which is really useful for target marketing. Fans can interact with your brand and have discussions, leave reviews, watch videos etc. etc.

Using an application called static FBML, you can add a custom tab to your fan page which is essentially a mini-website within Facebook. You can create your own custom fan page or have a custom fan page professional designed and uploaded for you. You can then set the default landing page for new fans to be sent directly to your custom Facebook business page. Current fans will always be taken directly to your fan page wall.



Also see Video: How to Create Your Own Facebook Custom Fan Page 

And How to Add Your ActiveRain Blog to Your Facebook Fan Page in 10 Mins 

There is no limit to the amount of fans you can have for a fan page and you can mass update all of your fans via email and on your fans walls via the fan page wall. Fan page updates are also integrated into Google real-time search results, whereas personal profile wall updates are not. Fan page content is publically visible (and searchable by search engines) regardless of a visitor’s status as a fan. (This is controllable using FBML, however that is beyond the scope of this post)



Groups are different from fan pages in a couple of ways. While they also have no limit to the number of members within the group, you will not be able to email update the members of your group once its size reaches 5,000 members. Groups also give you control over membership to the group. With a fan page, fans just click to become a fan and that’s it. Presto. They are a fan of your page. With groups, you can control who can become a member. You can choose to make it a private group, open to the public or limited to a certain network of people. If you choose you can also require an admin of the group to approve each group member before they are allowed access to the group. You can change these settings at any time and also choose to block specific people from joining at all. The only setting that cannot be changed is a network-specific group. Once a group is network specific, it cannot become global.


Membership types in a group

Members of a group can see content of that group based on the privacy settings set by the admins of the group. The number of groups a person joins does not affect their friend/pages limit but each person is limited to joining 300 groups in total. Group officers are listed on the group’s page and are essentially the same as any other member, besides being listed as an officer. Only group admins can make changes, send updates, set privacy or appoint other admins to the group.

So there you have it. There is a quick overview of the difference between personal profiles, fan pages, and groups. Keep your personal profile personal, your fans (potential clients and customers) updated and your members (current customers and clients) connected to your business through the use of these powerful business tools!


Also check out:

Press Releases: How and Why to Include Them in Your SEO

How to Set up a WordPress Blog on GoDaddy.com



Cheryl Waller
Marketing Consultant SEO, SEM, SMM


Become a FAN!

CUSTOM FAN PAGES http://facebook.com/CustomFanPages

MARKETING http://facebook.com/VTMarketing



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Comments (2)

Cheryl Waller, MBA
Ocean Capital Lending & Ocean Capital Real Estate Services Group - Vero Beach, FL
Florida REALTOR® & Mortgage Loan Originator

Hey Tammie! Thanks for re-blogging this :)

Apr 21, 2010 10:32 AM
Cheryl Waller, MBA
Ocean Capital Lending & Ocean Capital Real Estate Services Group - Vero Beach, FL
Florida REALTOR® & Mortgage Loan Originator

Hey Tammie! Thanks for re-blogging this!

Apr 21, 2010 10:33 AM