Monthly Archives: January 2011

Note 2 Self – Websites to check out…

Self,
Next time you get a brilliant idea, go to Kickstarter. A website that matches up Investors and People With Great Ideas.

Mylife.com is always sending me emails, but I never worry cause it goes straight to my spam folder. (Pat yourself on the back, Self) But apparently, so many people have fallen for it by giving them their credit card information, that there’s a class-action lawsuit (that’s the link to the lawyer’s page but they don’t have info up on it yet) in the works. One fellow blogger has written an interesting post on what can go wrong: Just Say “No” To mylife.com. His blog is very interesting and you should take a look at it for other good tips.

When you have some extra time, check out Slate, its an online magazine, with articles not found every where else on the web. Also try to see if you can follow them on Google Buzz. (Wish more bloggers would add that as an option because your list of daily links is getting toooooooo long.)

Self!!! Last but not least a very, important holiday is coming up, Super Bowl Sunday! remember to get ready! (Steve’s birthday is around the corner, too)

Creating A Facebook Page For Your Business

Recently, I was asked about the merits of having a Facebook Business page. Actually, the person asked whether they should drop their website and go solely with a Facebook Business Page. Having a Facebook page is not an either/or solution if you integrate Facebook with your business’s website or blog. The ideal scenario for a business is to have its own website, plus actively participate in social networking sites like Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn.

Image representing Facebook as depicted in Cru...Image via CrunchBaseFacebook has some powerful tools for businesses. With a page, those interested in following you can become “fans.” Then, anything that you post to your page can be seen by your fans and their friends too. You can store photos, videos, information about your company, and links to your blog. The limitation is that you are bound to their format, and any information is kept in separate tabs.

If, for example, you are an active blogger you can add it to your Facebook page, and any time you update your blogs your fans will see it on their walls. At the same time, you can add a “widget” to your blog that will encourage “fans” to follow you on Facebook.
So, the inevitable question that followed was, “How Do I Create a Facebook Page?”
Steps in Setting Up a Facebook Page.
Creating a Facebook Page is very, very simple. Don’t let the length of article below deter you. It’s long because I tend to be verbose and I wanted to go over the options in detail

  1. Go to Facebook and make sure you’re signed in.
  2. Go to this url:
    http://www.facebook.com/pages/manage/
  3. Click on the +Create Page button
  4. In the page that comes up you will need to select the type of Facebook page you want to create. In the left column, you can choose a Community page (aka Groups). In the right column, you can choose Official Page, which is what you choose if you want to create a business, organization, or fan page. You’ll probably want this option.
  5. Select one of these choices:

    a) Local business. (Note that if you choose this option, your business will only come up in a Facebook search for people who live in the immediate area. If your customers are outside your county, don’t select this option. If you’re a mechanic, or any business, who’s customers are only local, then you would select this option.

    b) Brand, product, or organization. This choice assumes that your page is of interest to any one, any where. I would select this option for any business or organization.

    c) Artist, band, or public figure. I wish more people would create these. Being a geek, I tried for the longest time to become a Facebook Friend of Dr. Michio Kaku, the physicist who hosts the Science Channel and other TV shows), but never could because it was always telling me that he had too many friends and “try again later.” Cropped image from a larger one of Michio Kaku...Image via WikipediaFinally, he started a fan page and now I can keep up with where he’s appearing, read his blog, or not. Since I am not a Friend, he doesn’t know me or that I’m ignoring him when I get too busy. Because I’m a Fan, rather than a Friend, my posts don’t appear on his wall. His posts appear on my feed, that’s all. This would be the perfect choice for say, a Town Historian, who wants to let people know what he’s working on, answer questions, have discussion boards, etc.
    If you select the second option (Brand, Product, or Organization), a pull down bar will appear prompting you to select the category. For example, Retail, Technology Product or Service, Religious Organization, etc.) Pick the closest one.
    If you select the third option, Artist, band or public figure, a pull down option bar appears prompting you to select the category. For example, government official, writer, actor, etc.)

    1. Page Name: Once you select the type of page, a text box appears asking for a page name. Type in the name of your business or organization.
    2. Check off the box that states that you are an official representative. This is a security measure for Facebook so that if its determined that you are trying to pull a fast one then they can pull your page at any time. You cannot proceed without checking this.
    3. Click the “Create Official Page”.
    4. Another popup appears asking you to confirm that you are an official rep and that they will take away the page if it violates their terms and conditions. They provide a link to it if you want to read the terms.
    Thats it. Now you can start filling in the page with information. In fact, once you confirm that you want to create a page, you will be taken to a form area prompting you to edit your page. I discuss the sections of that form below. You can take your time with this because you have not invited anyone to your page yet and a page has to have at least one “like” to start showing up in the Facebook search function. In short, no one can find it but you.
    Editing Your Facebook Page.
    Now that you’ve created a page, its time to start adding information to it. This can be done very quickly if you’ve done a little preparation. Things you should have or know in advance include having a representative image, contact information, website information, mission statement, and a paragraph about your business/organization.
    When you first create a page, Facebook helps you along with a page that has six options: images, invite friends, import contacts, post update, create a fan box, and set up your mobile phone. Ignore most of these options for now, because there’s nothing for any one to see yet. So why invite them? However, the first option of adding a photo should be your first step.
    1) Profile Photo. The first thing to do is to add a photograph. If you just created the page, this will be the first option that Facebook presents to you in their “Let’s get started!” form. Click the “Upload an Image from your computer” link. A popup appears asking you to navigate through your computer to find the best image. Select it, and your photo is uploaded. Don’t worry that your photograph doesn’t appear right away. If you refresh your page, it will show that its been added. Notice also, when you refresh your page, the option to add an image has disappeared and the No. 2 option–Invite your friends–has been moved up in its place. Don’t worry, you can still change your picture if you change your mind. In the left corner, just like on your profile page is your photo. If you want to change it hover your mouse over the picture and a Change Photo link appears.
    2.) The nitty gritty now starts. Time to fill in the information people will see when they visit your page. Right under your recently uploaded image is a “Edit page” link. Click on it.
    3.) The first form that appears is your Basic Information including date founded, company overview, general information, mission, awards, products and website. Fill in the information. Its alright if you leave the areas that don’t apply blank. Click save changes. It will return you to the same form but Information Updated appears at the top. You can make any changes if you like.
    4.) On the left column, there are other choices of information to fill out. They are: Manage Permissions, Basic Information, Profile Picture, Marketing, Manage Admins, Apps, Mobile, Insights, Help. I’ll take you through them.
    5.) Manage Permissions. Not ready for prime time? If you like, you can turn off the visibility of the page by clicking the box “Only Admins can see this Page.” That way you can take your time and edit your Facebook Page. The other options on the page focus on what you will allow visitors of your page to do. Do you want them to be able to post? Add photos? Add Videos? The default selection is that visitors can do all of that. Its your choice. If at a later date, you need to change it for any reason–say someone’s spamming your page–you can turn it off. The last option is to delete the page if for some reason you’ve changed your mind about having a Facebook page.
    6. The second and third options have already been filled out. The second being, your Basic information–see no. 3 above. The third option is your Profile Picture–see no. 1 above.
    7. Marketing: In this area you get tools for promoting your page, both on Facebook and on other websites. Anywhere you go on the internet these days, you see icons that allow you to share a link to an article on the site on Facebook; to “Like” the website; or to become a Fan. In this form, you can get the code to do that. If you have a website administer, the easiest thing to do, is to give them access to your Facebook page. To give your designer access you go to the next section that I will discuss next. You can create these promotional tools yourself if you’re technically inclined. There’s help information on each of these pages. There is also the option here, to advertise on Facebook. Ads on Facebook are charged on a cost per click basis. For information on advertising, go to the Facebook help page: http://www.facebook.com/help/?page=409.
    8.) The next option in the left column is Manage Admins. I believe you should assign at least one other Admin. The reasons I think its important is that this person can access the page and not have access to your login codes and it is an important backup in case there’s any problems with your personal account. If the main administrator cannot access the page–because he’s incapable of logging on, is out of the country and can’t get to it, or Facebook powers-that-be decide to revoke your membership status–the alternate Admin can always come to the rescue. Admins can update pages, change permissions, add photos, answer and delete posts, etc.
    Another administrator you might want to add is your website designer. From time to time, that designer will need to get some code, create an application, or other options, and its easier and faster if they can log in to get it, rather than trying to have you get the code and email it back to them. To add another administrator to the page, you must first be a Friend of the person. Make sure that you have added that person as a friend first, and in the box under your name, start typing the first letters of that person’s name and a list of your friends will appear. Select the appropriate person. If you want to add more administrators, click “Add another admin” right below. When finished. Save changes.
    9.) The next option is Apps, which really should be called tabs because it’s where you add menu tabs and adjust their settings for each of them. At the top of your Facebook business page there’s a tab-like menu. The default tabs are Wall, Info, Photos, and Discussions. In Apps, you can adjust the settings of these default tabs and add other tabs including an events calendar, videos, links, notes, and much more. Facebook calls these tabs “Apps.” The reason is that each one of these tools is implemented through online software that must be installed before you can use it. At the bottom of the page is the option to browse more applications you might want to install. You an also install Apps by clicking on the + symbol that is located to the right of the last tab on your Facebook page.
    Facebook has A LOT of apps to choose from, and you can even create your own apps if you’re a techie. The Add Apps area is searchable and also categorized. If you have a lot of videos you might want to add the YouTube app (YouTube) which makes the videos on your YouTube channel available to your Page visitors. If you’re a blogger, adding NetworkedBlogs would allow visitors to see any new posts to your blog. Or if you’re an active Tweeter, you can add tweet 2 twitter. If you like you can also have an eCommerce storefront, one app that does this is Payvment E-Commerce Storefront. If you’re looking to build up your mailing list, you can add MailChimp. There are also external sites that interact with Facebook such as Google, Plaxo, and many more, including special links to your own website.
    10.) The next area, titled Mobile, is where you set up your smart phone interactions. The options are mobile email, Mobile web, iPhone, and Text messaging. If you want to be able to upload photos or status messages from your phone, you would create a Facebook mobile email address. Clicking on mobile web allows you to create a Facebook url that directs people using their phones directly to your Page. If you have an iphone, you can install the Facebook app on it and whenever you click pages, your new page will appear. A note of warning about this. If you don’t want your phone to buzz every few minutes don’t approve the “Push Notifications” when you install the app. With SMS you can update your page status on your iPhone’s text messaging system.
    11.) Insights, the next area in the left column, reveals the statistics of your page. These stats include active users, new “likes,” number of views, number of new posts, etc. If you’re running a marketing campaign, this can be very useful. You can export the information which will create a csv text file so you can import it into your favorite database software such as Microsoft Excel. Note, that you will be emailed the same information here once a week if you haven’t turned it off in your personal Facebook account notifications options. If you’re not sure if its off or just want to check your notifications you can control it through “My Account” settings page, or go directly to: http://www.facebook.com/editaccount.php?notifications.
    12. The final area, Help, is where you find help with FAQs available on all of the sections above.
    That is a basic look at setting up a Facebook page. If you still need help, or if you prefer to watch a video on how to do this, go to YouTube and search for Creating a Facebook Page. There are many outstanding videos there. Once you get it set up and have played around with the options, you’ll probably want to do more. Later, in you’re interested, I can discuss other options, like setting up a custom Facebook Landing page, and connecting Facebook with your website, etc. Good luck! If you need any help or have any comments, I’d appreciate the feedback.
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    Adding My Blog to Facebook

    I am trying out the Facebook app, Networked Blogs. It adds a tab to your Business or Group’s Facebook Page that feeds your blog directly to your Facebook page. The reason I’m trying this is not really to promote the business or the blog–since I really use the blog to entertain myself, but because I have a client who’s interested in the feature. It seems easy to set up. To get started, log into Facebook and go to the Networked Blogs Page. Click on the “Go to App” button and follow the links. The one stickler, is you have to verify your blog by putting a widget on the page. The first try didn’t work, but I found a great tutorial by Geek Blogger that made it a snap. Since, I hadn’t written anything for a while, I thought I’d test it out by adding a new blog post. Right now, when I click on the Blog tab on my Facebook page, it says blog not found. This may be because nothing has been posted since I added it. If this appears then the app worked.

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