What’s the Current State of Facebook for Business

Facebook for BusinessMonday Facebook announced that it now has 901 million users.  That is a staggering number that puts them on pace to exceed 1 billion users by the end of 2012.  Facebook went on to reveal that 526 million of its 901 million users are daily active users.  The network receives 3.2 billion comments per day, 300 million new photos daily, and has logged 125 billion friendships.  These are all very impressive numbers for gauging both the size of the network and user engagement, but how can Facebook help businesses?

In Facebook’s original S-1 filing for their upcoming IPO they revealed that there were 37 million Facebook Pages as of December 31, 2011.  Social Media Examiner, in their 2012 Social Media Marketing Report, found that 92% of the participants in their survey use Facebook for marketing and 72% planned to increase their Facebook marketing efforts in 2012.

Based on the data, and the success of Facebook, it is clear businesses are buying into Facebook as a legitimate marketing platform.  The real question is are they seeing results?

Going back to Social Media Examiner’s 2012 Social Media Marketing Report they found that 61% of marketers have reported seeing lead generation benefits from social media.    Small business owners were the most likely to report lead generation benefits from their social media efforts.

Considering Facebook was the most widely adopted platform it is safe to say that businesses are seeing results from Facebook.  If you haven’t started marketing on Facebook or are struggling to see results, stop and define what you are trying to achieve.  What does success look like for your company?  Do you want more leads, sales, relationships, web traffic, etc.?  Once you have a goal and a picture of what success looks like, you can create a plan.

One common mistake we see with small and medium-sized businesses is they want to get involved with social media, specifically Facebook, so the first thing they do is create a Facebook page and assume that once the page is published people will flock to their page and Like it for no reason.  Just having a Facebook page isn’t enough, you have to promote it and give people a reason to Like the page.  It’s only until you start getting people to Like the page that you can really start to see the benefit of Facebook as a marketing tool and asset.  Put together a plan for what your idea of Facebook marketing success is and start promoting your page!

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