A Facebook fan page can serve many purposes. It can be a RSS feed for blog articles and news or it can be an open forum for page members to discuss certain topics.
Probably the most beneficial use of a Facebook fan page is when you develop it into a community.
In this case, a community would be a place where individuals with similar interests, beliefs, or opinions can come together and interact with one another.
When creating a community on Facebook, you need to remember a few things before you create your fan page. You need to treat your Facebook community like you would a normal community.
There is a need for Quality
Your fan page must contain quality information. This is a must when attempting to build an online community. You can’t build a community with a lack of interaction, and users aren’t going to interact if you don’t provide quality material for them to discuss and comment on. These materials could be blog posts, news articles, pictures or videos. When posting these items, be sure to remember what the purpose of the fan page is and make sure that your content relates to that.
Provide fans with something Useful
The only reason people will become fans of your page is because you have something to offer them. In the beginning, consumers are not engaged with who you are. They are only there to get something out of it. Be sure to provide them with something. Whatever your business may be, think about what potential customers want or need in relation to what you offer. It is critically important to offer something of utility. Help them with their problem. For example, if they are looking for a home, be sure to provide them with desired listings and information that will help them find a home.
Give Them a Voice and Be Sure To Listen
If your goal is to create a community on Facebook then you need to make sure the members have the ability to speak. This means allowing them to post to the fan page wall. This is where a lot of businesses get it wrong. What your fans are saying is actually more important to other fans than what you have to say. You need to LISTEN to your community members. Potential customers will identify themselves if you pay attention. Your job should be to stimulate discussion, contribute, and then monitor for opportunities.
Creating social media communities is difficult for businesses to grasp because of the marketing habits of old. We are so used to posting an interrupting advertisement and waiting for a response. This is not how social media works. To be successful with social media, you must always be willing to listen and then respond. Don’t try and dictate conversation. Instead facilitate and listen.