If you are just getting started with setting up social media platforms for your non-profit organization or small business, DIOSA Communications has a great resource page, “Facebook Best Practices,” with suggestions for getting the most out of your Facebook page. Along with the suggestions, the folks at DIOSA also have (and link to) step-by-step “how-tos,” so that even those unfamiliar with how Facebook works for organizations can implement these best practices and reap the rewards.
Particularly important are the suggestions that non-profits “add share buttons” to blogs and websites and “create customized tabs” on their Facebook pages. The power of Facebook–and all social media, really–lies in the speed with which users can share information with their friends and associates. The share button is absolutely necessary for encouraging Facebook fans to share the information your organization posts with their Facebook friends. Meanwhile, customized tabs help distinguish your organization’s page from others like it, thereby personalizing and helping to brand your Facebook page to help make it easily recognizable as being tied to your organization or small business.
For some examples of well-done Facebook pages, check out San Francisco’s Humphry Slocombe (by using their logo in all social media profiles, they make the page immediately recognizable to fans) and the non-profit Walk San Francisco, which has customized their tabs to offer fans information and resources (such as the ability to view upcoming events and the opportunity to sign up for the Walk San Francisco newsletter). In essence, this is the kind of information one would expect to find on an organization’s homepage, and therefore it needs to be on the organization’s Facebook page as well. The goal is to make sure that people who find you on Facebook can look at your page and get a solid understanding of who you are, what you do, what your mission statement is, and where they can go for more information.
There’s no denying that people are social creatures; we especially love to share with others information about brands, companies, and organizations we like. Facebook makes this sharing incredibly easy–not only for fans but for the organizations and businesses that are smart enough to use it. So whatever your feelings are about the site personally, your organization or business would be wise to harness the power of Facebook and put it to work for you, if you haven’t already.