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Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Social Media Marketing Trends to Avoid: The Facebook Web Page

There’s an online trend that’s making the rounds with businesses these days. Instead of having a website, many small, medium, and even large companies are substituting actual websites with Facebook pages. 

This was something that was seen – and continues to be seen – on the far less relevant MySpace, a trend that’s making its way over to Facebook now that it’s become the clear social media platform of choice. Essentially, this is accomplished by businesses registering a unique URL (or using their already existing one) to drive users directly to their social media profiles.

But, is this necessarily the best idea? The answer, in a word, is no. A business should never use a Facebook page, MySpace profile, YouTube channel, Twitter account, or any other social media site as their primary web presence. Even though doing so seems to make a lot of sense on the surface, there are reasons aplenty why this is just a bad idea.

Using a Facebook page or other social media site as the destination of your URL is a bit like decorating the outside of your home with wallpaper – an exterior decoration idea that may appeal to a small percentage of the reading audience, but then you also have to remember that there are people in this world who enjoy a good plate of liver. In other words, it’s a good thing there’s no accounting for taste. But the fact remains that most people driving past (or surfing the Internet and stumbling across your website and find it to be nothing more than a Facebook profile) will have the immediate impression of it being a cheap, gaudy substitute.

Apart from surface appearances, using a social media profile as your website can also negatively impact  your business through its limited functionality. If you take a look at Facebook, for instance, there really is nothing you as a business owner can do beyond posting images, videos, links, and notes that’ll make it a truly interactive experience for the customer.

While this may seem like a lot, there’s far more you can do with a website – even a minimalistic, bare bones one – than you can with a Facebook page. More importantly, your customers won’t have a hard time navigating through your website to find the information they’re looking for. With Facebook, everything is listed in chronological order and that can be awfully frustrating to a visitor, especially if you’re constantly updating your page or there’s a lot of activity on there from followers.

Social media marketing through various platforms like the aforementioned Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube is absolutely essential for businesses looking to reach a wider customer base. But without an existing website to link back to – your online “HQ” – those efforts at reaching out could be returning very little result, if any.

Building a website and creating a Facebook account are two vastly different undertakings that are often the deciding point for many who just don’t have the know-how to do the former. If your social media strategy is languishing from a missing or woefully out of date website, contact Flyline Search Marketing – experts in website design, search engine optimization, social media marketing, and pay-per-click advertising – who can get you on the road to an effective social marketing campaign.


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