The top mistakes businesses make when promoting their products and services through Facebook:

1: There is no “I” in Fan Page.

One of the biggest mistakes businesses make with social media is constantly posting about their company, products or services. Anybody that receives the messages you post have actively ‘liked’ your brand; not because they want to get push marketed to every time they logon to Facebook but because they want get personal with your brand. The brands that succeed through social media are those that post about a variety of topics, as well as their company.

2: Using a Personal Account for Your Business.

Back in 2007 Facebook gave businesses the ability to create their own pages. They also changed their terms of service to state that you cannot use your personal page to market a business, products or services and yet this is still a common practice. In reality, this is playing Russian roulette with Facebook because they have the right (and have exercised it) to shut down pages for violating their terms of service. Besides running the risk of having your page shut down, you are losing access to advertising options, analytics, apps for business use and many other features Facebook offers business fan pages.

3: No engagement with your audience.

Many pages don’t allow for their audience to create a post or even send them a message. This is dangerous in that your audience will see this as the only reason you have a page is to market to them and not to engage or show your personality. When you post content page, your audience will respond. That doesn’t mean you will always have to follow up with a reply but occasionally you may be asked a question that if left unanswered could lose a potential or current customer. You should check your social media presence every day; at least twice. Don’t hide from customer complaints – deal with them head on. Your audience wants to know that you are human and that there are real people behind your business. Never delete complaints (unless they contain graphic language, threats against a person or your business) if you end up deleting a complaint for these reasons, make it clear why you took the actions). For general complains, answer it directly and head on. If it requires some delicacy, provide the person with a private means to contact you to resolve the issue.

4: Leaving URLs in Status Updates.

This is simply a lazy thing people do that tends to distract from the post being made. Why? Because once a pasted URL shows up in the body of the status update, it will result in a link that appears in a display box below that update. You can (and should) delete the link and the resulting content will remain.

5: Wrong Day / Wrong Time.

Who’s your audience? Are you targeting consumers where the majority will be working during the day? Targeting business owners? Stay at home moms? The days of the week and times of day become important. Understand your target market, research when they are most likely to see the status updates you provide. Use the Facebook Insights tool to help you understand what is working and what isn’t and obviously tweak what isn’t!

6: Posting Enough or Not Enough?

Don’t manage your Facebook page with a rule that determines how many times you post each day or week that’s the wrong approach. It’s not the number of times you post that matter; it’s the quality and relevance of the content that matters. Generating content based on the type of information your fans need, like and would benefit from helps you create a content message schedule that’s aligned with the goals of your business.

7: Not being personal / Being too personal.

You would be surprised how much using “we” instead of your company name can improve the relationship between you and your customers online. If you constantly answer questions with “Company name thinks this” or “Company name thinks that” rather than saying “We think this” your ‘fans’ and ‘followers’ do not have the chance to feel your brand is being personal. On the other hand, your Facebook Fan page should not be used as a platform to provide personal, political, religious, or other beliefs that may be offensive to your audience.

8: Thinking you will have tons of new “Likes” in a week.

We tell all our clients that they need to invest into their social media presence for at least 6 months before they start seeing benefits. You will need to inform current customers that you are now using social media, as they interact with your brand their online friends will see this and are more likely to be converted into your customers. This cause and effect continues and you will soon have a successful social media presence, but not in a day, week or month.