If you’ve been following our Facebook Marketing Week, you’ve read that Facebook Pages are the way to go to establish a business presence on Facebook. In light of that, I wanted to break down the differences between Facebook Profiles, Facebook Groups and Facebook Pages so you have a solid understanding of how they work.
Facebook provides three types of “profiles” for people to use to facilitate communication with their audience. Those types of profiles are:
- Facebook Profiles are what people use to maintain their online identity with Facebook. One example that comes to mind is my local coffee shop, Coffee Rush. While they have a Page, their personal profile provides for 1:1 messaging with the business owner.
- Facebook Groups are ideal for people operate a topic or interest-based group and offer restricted access to it. Phoenix Marketers is a great example of a cause-oriented group that unites peers and prospects together with events and updates.
- Facebook Pages are intended for businesses, brands and public figures. I’ve got a pretty cool page with weekly updates, but I have to pay respect to Pages that really work it: Vitamin Water, Red Bull and Starbucks.
For a comparison of exactly what each type of profile can and can’t do, I’ve put together a table to indicate the features and how each type of profile supports it. Click the image to see it full-size.
As you can see, there are features and benefits in using a personal Profile, a Group and a Page for your business. To minimize confusion, I recommend choosing one type of profile and work on building up a raving-fan audience.
Pages provide better long-term benefit, but personal profiles offer more flexibility with interacting with people. Groups are great for driving interest outside of a specific brand, but rather a cause to get people to connect with each other. Nothing precludes you from operating both a Page and a Group; ultimately, it depends on the type of interactions with your online audience.
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