This topic is sort of a pet peeve of mine and writing about it will probably help explain to several people who have recently "friended" me, why I have not accepted. I have a rule and it is as simple as this. I don't "friend" a business. Set up a business/fan page and I'll "like" you for sure, but sending out a Facebook friend request for a business is a no no in my book. Here's why:
When you become friends with someone on Facebook the other person has access to your personal profile. Let's role play here. Say Queen City Craft decided to set up a Facebook page but went with a personal page where I have to "friend" people to get my followers. I do some promotion to build my following and someone named Beth decides to become friends with my QCCB page. After she friends me I now have access to her personal profile page because she told Facebook that we are friends and according to her settings her friends can see her wall posts, photos and info page. She will get my updates, but I will also get hers. Beth realizes this and decides to stop being friends of QCCB. She is bummed because she wants to stay connected to QCCB, but she doesn't want QCCB to know all about her Friday night adventures.
The flip side of this is setting up a business page instead. In this situation QCCB sets up a business page and people "like" it by clicking a button instead of having to send out "friend" requests. There are several reasons why a business page is better:
- You will build a bigger and better fan base
- People will be "like" you more often than they would "friend" you because of privacy concerns.
- You have the ability to promote your business with ads
- Business pages come with built in insights so you can have visibility to how engaged people are with your brand page.
- More robust marketing tools
I encounter this situation all the time. I have several "friend" requests right now in my inbox from businesses and I feel terrible because I just can't "friend" them back. In some cases we are actually friends in real life, but I can't break my rule. I don't "friend" businesses.
What can you do? If you are still thinking about whether you should get your indie biz on Facebook the answer is YES (I'll go into more of that later). When you decide to make the leap please consider setting up your Facebook page as a business page instead of a personal one. If you have already set one up and want to switch you may be hesitant thinking you will lose your current following. My advice is DO IT! Create the fan page and post it on your current page, message all your "friends" telling them to jump over and "like" you on your new page. Leave it up there for a while until you see people making the switch. It will be well worth it. I promise.