What Facebook’s Facelifts Mean for Entrepreneurs

facebook facelift
Facebook and Privacy

Let’s have a quick look at the privacy storm swirling around the social networking behemoth as of late.

In the last few weeks, Facebook underwent several changes, ranging from new security features to the powerful “like” button. As the popular social network continues to change, users who want to utilize it for business purposes need to figure out how to handle these facelifts.

Your customers are now faced with the following dilemma: the information we all share (and with whom we share it) may be disseminated in ways we never intended. Unfortunately, the work you’ve done to establish a presence on Facebook and connect with people on their platform now may be hitting a snag. Let’s look at why.

Saving Face”¦book

During the last few weeks, Facebook experienced a litany of negative press in response to its announcements at the f8 conference. With all the new features and their implications on privacy, users wanted answers and some assurance as to how their information will be used moving forward.

Some Facebookers went so far as to deactivate their accounts. The search term “how to delete your Facebook account” became infamous in one short week of Facebook profile backlash.

As a business owner or site owner, how should you react? Of course, the last thing you want is to lose a line of communication with customers. Understand the risks many now see in using Facebook and react accordingly.

To save face, you can take these precautionary steps:

  • Weigh the option of making your business’ Facebook Page visible only to Fans, who are likely customers who used your product or service. Even with this heightened security, you can still suggest that Friends of your personal profile become “like” your page.
  • Send your fans a message to tell them that your page is safe. Give them a few tips to tighten up their personal pages, such as making information on their profiles available to “Only Friends” via Account – Privacy Settings.
  • Check your security options often. Every time Facebook makes privacy changes and redesigns, your settings reset to default. Make yourself a reminder to check your settings every week.

What’s to like about the “like” button?

For one, the button will appear on dozens of other websites. Without even going to the Facebook site, users can click the button and post the content to their news feeds. For example, a user can “like” a news story from CNN, which will appear on their profile page and likely on their friends’ news feeds.

There are a few things you can do to market your company with this seemingly omnipresent button:

  • If you know of any content (story, video, pictures, etc.) on a site with the button, find it and “like” it. Go so far as to post it to your business’ Facebook Page, too.
  • Instead of having fans, pages get liked. But people can suggest that friends “like” the page, too. Request that customers use the “like” button as a testimonial, and suggest your page to friends.
  • Friends and friends of friends may be able to see when somebody likes something related to you. With that said, you never know who might be looking to steal one of your ideas, so be wary when giving away your best ideas for free.
  • Use the ad interface that Facebook hosts to target certain demographics. This will increase your chances of getting hits, views and likes for everybody to see.

Entrepreneurs need to maximize Facebook’s networking potential given its ever-changing design and unyielding popularity. Keeping your page fresh is easy enough, but ensuring its safety is another task.

Follow a few simple steps to make customers comfortable with the site and expand your audience with the “like” button.

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