Facebook Fan Pages
vs Facebook Groups
Are you maximizing your Facebook exposure? I recently realized that I wasn’t!
I saw countless businesses with pages and posts and profiles and groups and gaggles, and I didn’t have a clue where to start!
First, I’m going to share my thoughts and summary on the two types. Then I want to share three high-quality blog posts that I found on other sites, which I thought did a awesome job clarifying things for me. Hopefully these will help you make smart choices to maximize your time.
Both Facebook Fan Page’s and Facebook Group’s are a great way to increase your exposure on Facebook. Both allow you a type of community format and interaction with your members/fans. Both can be used to syndicate content. However, even with all of those similarities, there are some substantial differences.
Facebook Fan Page
This box links to a “Facebook fan page” (ie: business page) I created to enable individuals seeking to share syndication to find me and find each other. I welcome all of you to come share your value posts with the community, and help syndicate other members there. Feel free to contact fans of the community if you are looking for a tribe to work with!
- Customizable URLs (after you reach 25 fans go to http://facebook.com/username )
- Search Engine Indexed (increases your search engine exposure, and responds to SEO keywords)
- Visitor Statistics
- Related Event Creation & Invitation
- Extra Facebook Applications run on Pages just as on Profiles.
- Ability to import your blog feed, to help support a page activity.
- Best for connecting a fanbase to a source of information.
- Publicly visible, so users don’t need to be logged in to find them.
- No ability to Direct Message (email) each fan individually, all emails go out as a “blast” to all fans at once via Updates.
- Generally considered the more high-maintenance of the two choices.
- Facebook users are still less familiar with pages, and often less likely to interact with them than with groups.
This box links to a “Facebook group” I created to allow members to ask technical questions about WordPress, Facebook & Twitter. Its a great place for members to help each other! Come help others while getting your questions answered too!
- Can Email/Direct Message each member individually, direct to their inbox.
- Generally considered easier to set up and manage.
- Better structure for encouraging member-to-member interaction
- Best for allowing a member base to interact and develop a community without leaving Facebook.
- No Customizeable URLs
- No Search Engine Exposure
- No Visitor Statistics
- No Related Event Creation & Invitation
- No ability to support external stream/rss input, all activity must be generated in the group.
- No access to any of the widely used Facebook applications that many use for social functions, opt-ins, etc.
- Not publicly visible, users must be logged in to search for them.
- Many consider the wording to be vague as to whether business advertising can occur on them without violating the TOS (terms of service)
For me, a Facebook Fan page, with its SEO/search-centric style and permissions for full business operations, was ideal for my Syndication functions and my personal page on Facebook. This helps me build my web presence.
The support community, which has no reason to be searchable from outside Facebook, is logically best served by a Facebook Group. However, generally speaking, due to the lack of SEO options, the lack of applications (which I depend on for good time management) and the lack of access to the fan’s wall, I have moved all of my Groups to Pages.
For my current uses, I personally have no use of a group. I consider them stalled/dead in development. That does not mean that they are not useful to someone that wishes to ignore the spam they encourage others to post on the wall (since it will not go down members news feeds) and utilize the email feature similar to an auto-responder blast.
How have you implemented Facebook Groups and Pages for your business or organization? What challenges have you had? When you leave your comments, feel free to include a link to your Page or Group to share with the community here!