many biz builders are experiencing some frustration with facebook these days:
~ pages disappearing
~ photos albums disappearing
~ problems with tagging, commenting etc.
~ admins not having access to edit their page
~ rules that are hard to understand
~ potential hackers, glitches, bugs...
and it is not like there is an easy way to get answers from facebook. really, i do get your frustration. here is my solution for you.
stop relying on facebook as the sole spot you do your biz
facebook is wonderful for certain purposes. it is great for:
- networking with potential clients, other biz owners, your ‘people’
- promoting & generating buzz and interest
- driving traffic to your ‘shop’
but facebook should not be your ‘shop’. you need to have your own ‘shop’ off of facebook. either a website, a blog, or even a madeit/etsy/ebay store. something besides just facebook.
- reliablity – fb is glitchy and because of that unreliable. things disappear, don’t work, work again, don’t work again. if you have your own site, and are not relying on fb to run your biz, these glitches are annoying. not earth shattering.
- control – fb changes things all the time, and those changes are completely out of your control. just when you have something working, or something figured out it changes. have your own site that YOU control and that you can set up to work perfectly for your biz.
- ownership – you are using facebook’s brand and facebook’s space to sell your thing. facebook benefits from your hard work. why not get your own little piece of internet real estate? purchasing your own domain name is cheap. and it’s yours!
- support – when fb is glitchy, unreliable and ever-changing it is really hard to find help or answers. you can’t ring up facebook and ask WTF? if you have your own site you can have tech support when things go wrong, which makes problems a lot easier to solve.
- professionalism – let’s face it. sometimes it seems like every mum out there is opening up a little biz on facebook. i am a big fan of competition and believe there is room for all of us. but if you want to stand out among the crowd of mum-photo/ hairclip/ cake/ jewelry/ logo/ wallart/ decor/ tshirt/ clothing/ hat/ insertyourthinghere-makers then a good start would be having a ‘shop’ off of facebook.
~ if you look established, professional & competent (even if you have only been in biz for 5 minutes) then people will think you must be the pro. it is a lot easier to deal with competition when you conduct your biz in the most professional manner possible.
facebook problems do not get me down
look, i am not knocking facebook here. i love facebook. i love the 1000+ likers i woke up to the build a little biz page this morning. (so much awesomeness there!) i love connecting with each and every one of my fans and the folks whom i am fans of. if my page suddenly disappeared tomorrow, yes i would be a bit annoyed (who wouldn’t miss 1000+ fans?). but honestly, it wouldn’t be that big of a deal.
- my content (the accumulation of my hard work) would all still exist on my blog. so the loss of a fb page does not mean the loss of all of my work.
- i have a newsletter to keep in touch with my true fans – the ones who really want to hear from me – it would be easy to ask them to follow me to a new page.
- my shopping cart (if i were selling something) would be on my own site, or i would have an online ‘store’ off of facebook. so while my promoting and networking might be affected by the loss of a page, my ability to sell my thing would not.
the part where i make a radical suggestion
if you are just starting out with your little biz idea and you are only on facebook at the moment and you are basically running a hobby then good for you! you have to just get started and get out there and this is a perfect start!
but if you are serious about building your litte biz, and really making a success of it, this is what you need to do:
- get your page up, start promoting your thing, start finding your true fans
- and then put your energy/time/resources into getting your biz off of fb. you need your own website or at the very least your own blog. you can make your own website using a site like squarespace or perhaps you could hire one of your fellow biz building mums to do it for you: support one of their businesses while building your own.
i really think the time we are investing into figuring out facebook, fixing our facebook pages, and using facebook to do all of our biz stuff, could be better invested into building your own ‘shop’, off of facebook. just sayin’
what do you think? do you agree? or do you think facebook is a fine place to have your biz. do you trust facebook after all of these problems people have been having? are you confident that your biz would be fine even if your facebook page disappeared? please leave a comment. i would love to hear from you. =)