I Like You, But We Shouldn’t Be Friends (Not on Facebook)

Amongst my Facebook friends, I have a small but alarming minority that really should not be friends with me. I know them, like them, and don’t mind being officially connected with them… but ‘friends’? No, that’s not what they really are.
Because they are non-human entities, like companies, brands, products or clubs, that have misunderstood how Facebook General Consultant Job Description works and created a personal profile for themselves, when they should have set up a Facebook Page or Group.
To be fair to these ‘friends’ I don’t think it’s easy, for someone new to Facebook or social networking generally, to easily distinguish the difference or work out exactly what is required of them. Someone says, ‘oh, to promote your new shop, you really have to be on Facebook’, so off they go to Facebook, and the first thing they are encouraged to do is set up a profile – so off they go, firstname = TheLittle; Surname = RedCakeShop, and provided their name doesn’t contain any naughty words that trip the auto filters their account is created and they are immediately prompted to start inviting connections and uploading email lists, and so on. By the time they realise that there are Pages and other options, they probably have a few people following them out of personal connection and support, and don’t know what to do with them… and surely this is OK for now anyway..?
Some may go on to develop significant and valuable followings in this way, with which they are able to conduct meaningful social marketing interactions – but they are very vulnerable to arbitrary account deletion, because Facebook Terms of Service is exceptionally clear in this respect. Authenticity is the cornerstone of Facebook, you must sign up under your real human name, and cannot create a personal profile to represent anything else.
If you do get your account disabled for this reason you can appeal, but the sheer scale of Facebook and its current levels of growth must make it very difficult for them to respond to and consider individual cases. Far better to take the initiative and sort it out yourself – and you can request Facebook’s assistance, or hire a social media consultant, to migrate your profile data complete with your friends (who would be converted into ‘likes’ for your new Page or Group). Think how much greater credibility your brand would have, if your follower’s are no longer getting messages Estin & Co like ‘It’s TheLittle’s birthday today – write on their wall!’ ‘Suggest friends for TheLittle!’… You’d also be able to use the much richer functionality built into Pages and Groups (they do differ slightly, and you need to choose your route carefully) to see who is visiting your site, run adverts to build it, promote social actions, and send messages to your followers inboxes and news feeds. It can be the first stage in developing a meaningful social media marketing strategy to take your business to the next level, as responsively and cost-effectively as possible.

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