Facebook Mistakes Every Business Should Avoid

Using Facebook for your business is a vital piece of your marketing plan. You have your personal account on Facebook, you have found every high school friend you ever knew (or never wanted to see again). After reading many an article on how it can help your business you are now thinking about creating a business fan page on Facebook.

Facebook has taken off so successfully because it has filled a void that was needed in our daily lives. It satisfies the need to connect to friends from the past and keep up with your friends and family in the now. Many a friendship has been reconnected, established and strengthened using these non-traditional forms of media. True story-I found my brother who I had never met via Myspace. But how do you use this form of communication to market your business?

As business owners we are passionate about our brand and what we do. Using traditional media, we know that when we have a sale or a special it is time to shout it from the rooftops. While using radio, television or print this way is effective, you will fail if you try to use the same methods with your social media campaign.

Some tips to remember when building your Facebook page:

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Starting an Online Business – What You Need to Know : Women of G+ Professional Women Series

Women of Google+ is hosting Google+ Hangouts to provide an opportunity to discuss issues and topics that matter to you with others that find it important also.

Date & Time:

Monday January 2, 2012 @ 9 pm (Eastern Time US)

Hangout Topic : Starting an Online Business – What You Need to Know

The Women of G+ Professional Women Series is designed for professional and entrepreneurial women to learn and support each other while thriving in business.

Our topic is designed to be a discussion about the items and checklists in order to bring your business online and gain attention. Platforms such as Google+, LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, Etsy, and Pinterest and will be covered. Other items such as ecommerce and blogging will be covered.

Hangout Status : LIVE Hangout On Air

To view this Hangout, at 9 pm EST (or your local time equivalent) go to Lynette’s Google+ stream and look for the video player. Just click PLAY to watch the hangout LIVE! Depending on the topic, we will be inviting in viewers to participate in the hangout as well.

Don’t worry if you can’t make it in the Hangout or carve an hour out at this time. Because there is limited room for participants in a Google+ Hangout, we will be streaming live – called Hangout On Air. The show will also be recorded for future viewing and available on the Women of Google+ YouTube channel.

Add To Your Calendar:

Time Zones:

Monday January 2nd, 2012 @ 9 pm (Eastern Time US)

NEWARK, United States, New Jersey
9:00p Mon, Jan 02 2012

SYDNEY, Australia
1:00p Tue, Jan 03 2011

TOKYO, Japan
11:00a Tue, Jan 03 2011

LONDON, United Kingdom, England
2:00a Tue, Jan 03 2011

LOS ANGELES, United States, California
6:00p Mon, Jan 02 2012

To find your time zone, please check out Worldtimebuddy.com

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Google+ May Be a Threat for Facebook

…or maybe it won’t. The jury is still out on if Facebook will hemorrhage users to Google+ or if people will just frequent both social network platforms. An article published by International Business Times states that “13% of adult Internet users in the US have signed up for a Google+ account, while another 9% plans to join the network in the next 12 months.”

According to YouGov

  •  3 men for every 2 women (vs. 1 man for every 1.2 women on Facebook)
  •  43% of membership is 18-29 (vs. 31% for Facebook)
  •  59% has a college degree (vs. 37% for Facebook)
  •  48% are Single (vs. 33% of Facebook users)

This is amazing growth considering that Google+ is less than six weeks ‘old’ at this point and is still in limited access status (‘field trial’). Growing frustration with Facebook security settings and spammy gaming components have given unhappy users an alternative platform to connect with others.

Have you given up any other social network so you can participate in Google+ or are you learning to juggle them all?

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Why You Should Feed the Guppies in Google+

Big Fish Little BowlRight now Google+ is a land rush of ‘early adopter’ folks all looking to stake their flag in a weeks-old social networking platform. There is a definite thrill to it, I won’t lie, of having ‘first’ bragging rights and getting easy/easier access to some of the big names in media. But with this new frontier comes a new opportunity to rethink how we use social media.

Here’s my question, once you’re in Google+ do you really want to do the same old thing you do on other social networks like Facebook or Twitter?

I have a few fast and loose ideas that I use to determine who I ‘circle’ in Google+, what type of information I seek out, and remind myself it’s about quality not quantity (of followers).  Here’s my (your) chance to reinvent yourself. If Facebook is like high school, let’s make Google+ graduate school!

Don’t follow the big fish.

Google+ will become an echo chamber of content or personalities you are already following or engaging with on other platforms. If you follow the A-listers in social media (or your niche of choice) you may be wasting your time by seeing the same content over and over. I have to admit, bigger fish like +Chris Brogan seem to be sharing different content and actively trying to create a different ‘space’ for himself than he has on Twitter or Facebook.  Honestly unless you need to consume every last drop of what he types, his blog is usually sufficient enough.  On the other hand internet celebraties such as +Chris Pirillo seem to be consistant from one platform to another (which is actually a good thing). Convient if you don’t want to hop platforms to see what he’s up to, but you run the risk of creating a time-suck trying to stay up to date.

If accessibility is what you crave, my advice is to grab it now in Google+ from the A-Listers while you can, because when the platform starts to ramp up, their ability to personally interact with you will dwindle.  With the Big Three – Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn turning into the Fab Four with the addition of Google+, it’s just a fact of the space-time continuum that they will have less time to devote to each platform.

Feed the guppies.

Take time to find and get to know people that don’t have thousands of followers. There is so much more value to finding people that offer intelligent conversations or information (or that are just plain fun) rather than becoming just another member of the audience.  There are plenty of new Google+ A-Listers in the rough, and if you really value cutting edge content, you will seek out these up-and-comers rather that just fall back on the tried-and-true.  On the flip side, by nurturing people that find value in YOU, you can help boost your whuffie and develop a new audience and support base.

Watch out for sharks.

As with any communication platform on the Internet, there are always people that look for opportunities to take advantage of you, harass you, or sell you snake oil. While I enjoy following and conversing with people I don’t know ‘in real life’, not everyone is comfortable with that level of connection so be respectful. If you come across content or people you don’t want to be subjected to, use the ‘block’ option or report them.  Be careful and be safe, but also understand that people may have other uses for the platform than you do, it’s their right. Let them swim on by if you’re not in agreement.

Don’t chum the waters.

Just as you probably don’t like being blatantly ‘pitched’ to online, don’t do it to others. People participate on social networking sites to keep in touch with others and don’t always appreciate you pushing into their conversations to sell them your widget. The same etiquette that exists on Twitter or Facebook should exist in Google+. Have conversations, get to know people, offer value – don’t not sell.  Just remember that people aren’t active on social networking platforms only to be marketed to, you have to provide value and earn trust first.

Design your own fish bowl.

Make Google+ your experience. Design your Circles (groups of people to either publish content with or consume content from) how you see fit. If something doesn’t work, don’t do it!  The beauty of social networking sites is that you can choose what kind of information you want to put out to others, what conversations you want to be a part of, who/what you want to consume, and how much time you want to spend.  Make the best use of your time, just make sure you are finding value for your own use.

About the Author

Lynette Young | Lynette RadioLynette has been blogging since 1997, podcasting since 2004, and working professionally in social media technologies and social communications since 2006. Lynette is also an organizer for PodCamp Philly and Social Media Club Princeton NJ. Lynette is also the curator of the Women in Google+ website and a huge fan of G+ Hangouts.

You can find out more about Lynette at her blog Lynette {Radio}, her company Purple Stripe Productions, or on her Google+ profile.

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Beatweek Magazine – The Zuck Strikes Back

Beatweek Magazine just published an article covering a bit of today’s Facebook product announcement (Facebook Video Calling) and the inevitable comparison to Google+.  The article has a good point about video chat programs living in a web browser, but in reality it’s even a more narrow focus – the video chat lives within a website run inside a browser.

Unfortunately, the actual Facebook product announcements were as misguided as they were outdated. Group chat and video phone calls belong in a web browser about as much as a jet engine belongs in a Ford Focus

As long as the feature eventually works its way into mobile platforms and applications, I’m not sure where the software comes from is important. Facebook obviously has a larger user population, and not all people will want video chats with up to 10 people (which is the current limit in Google+ Hangouts).  On the flip side, current users of video chat programs such as ooVoo or Skype (which is what has been integrated into Facebook) have had to pay for the privilege of more than one to one video calls.  Google+ is opening it up for free.  Money (or lack of payment required) may be the driving force behind the adoption of multi-person video chats in a social platform more so than the desire to only video chat with one other person.

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