Lady Gaga does it, The Royal Family does it and, your grandma might even do it, too. So why are you holding out on Facebook?
In spite of recent reports about its negative effect on marriages, new research suggests there are plenty of good reasons to embrace the social media network , especially if you’re a business owner.
If you have not yet joined the 500 million people on Facebook, there are plenty of good reasons – personal and business – to do so, according to professor Jennifer Regina, at New Jersey’s Rowan University.
Promotion: You should use Facebook to promote yourself. If you are a business owner , then you should be using it to advertise your company.
“I tell my college students that branding yourself is very important,” Regina said. Create a visual, online portfolio of your education, accomplishments and pictures of yourself. Make sure your avatar image on Facebook is professional and your links and comments reflect your areas of interest.
No matter how small your business, you should have a separate Facebook Fanpage established. A Fanpage does not limit you to 5,000 friends, unlike a personal page, and allows you to promote your business on Facebook. Some companies that have a great company Fanpage and have embraced integrating social media into their marketing campaigns are Starbucks, Baskin Robbins, Walgreens and Us Weekly.
Networking: In this economy you should have established a presence on Facebook just to keep your networking current. Facebook allows you to reach out to friends, former bosses and coworkers and to keep informed about potential job opportunities.
“I have helped companies in the past find employees by just posting an announcement in my status. It is amazing how fast the word spreads on Facebook,” Regina said.
Connection: The most basic benefit to Facebook is the ability to connect or reconnect with family and friends. You are able to see instantaneously what family happenings are occurring. Pictures, videos and announcements are easily updated, and you are never left with a feeling of being uninformed. Happy birthday wishes, baby announcements and wedding pictures are posted through Facebook and not sent through the mail anymore.
Awareness: Facebook can become your best source of news. By joining Fanpages and Groups that reflect your interests, you are able to get a constant stream of individualized information to your news stream and your phone.
“I find out about marketing news, local news and weather all from my Facebook newsfeed,” Regina said.
“Facebook offers so many unique benefits that individuals and companies should be easily and freely taking advantage of to help make their lives and companies more efficient. The first social media site you should investigate is Facebook. The opportunities to learn and communicate and are endless,”said Regina, who also owns the N.J.-based marketing firm The Marketing of Everything.