Three points to consider before using Facebook for your small business

Three points to consider before using Facebook for your small business

As a small business owner, you do it all — you’re the human relations manager, IT lackey, and accountant. Should you add managing a company Facebook page to your never-ending to-do list?

The short answer is: it depends.

Social Glassboard“Social media” and “SEO” are buzzwords that a lot of small business owners hear and may feel pressured to act on, but the fact is that social media adoption across the board isn’t the right strategy. You must pick and choose the platforms to use for your business (and your sanity), and then commit to post and interact with viewers on a regular basis.

This article is not intended to dissuade you from adopting Facebook for your small business, but rather to temper your expectations. Facebook is not the silver bullet you’ve been looking for and, depending on your business and customers, may or may not be the right fit.

There’s no doubt that many businesses can attribute some of their success to Facebook activity. Will your company be one of them? Consider the following points:

1) Facebook is, by and large, a personal social medium, not a tool for small business.

Want to brag about your kid’s latest softball triumph? Curious how your high school prom date is aging? Facebook is a great tool for braggarts and cyber stalkers.

It’s revolutionized the way we keep in touch, and it’s a fun distraction. But, the bottom line is that Facebook was built for personal interaction.

So what about your small business? If you’re likely to find new clients from your personal network, or you have ready-made content that’s easy to post, go for it! Photographers and residential real-estate agents, take note.

That’s not to say that many businesses haven’t found great success on Facebook. They have. According to Facebook’s corporate website there are a multitude of success stories.

However, you should be aware that spending hours perfecting your Facebook page may not pay dividends.

Three points to consider before using Facebook for your small business

Three points to consider before using Facebook for your small business

2) What, exactly, is your reach?

Facebook reach is decreasing. Why?

Billions of people subscribe to Facebook, so why is your audience decreasing?

The simple answer is that there is a surplus of content and so Facebook filters the amount that readers see.

What does that mean for your small business? It means that the number of people who otherwise might have seen your content just got a lot smaller.

3) There may be better uses of your (social media) time

Whether or not Facebook is right for your business, social media is not going away.

You may want to consider spending your limited time on those social networks that increase search engine optimization (SEO) more directly.

After all, the whole point of using social media is to drive traffic to your website. Why not use the platforms that drive the most traffic?

Even though they Google+ doesn’t have near the reach of Facebook (Google+ and YouTube are two of those networks.

Has your small business grown its customer base using Facebook? Share your success stories in the comments section!