The need to leverage social media for a real estate agency is really a no-brainer these days. In 2011 Facebook is one of the easiest ways to connect with clients, potential clients and the community.
Unfortunately many agencies have failed to setup their business correctly. Businesses really need to be setup as a Business Page, not a personal profile and your choice can hamper its effectiveness.
There are many reasons why your agency should be represented by a Business Page not a personal profile but here are a few..
1/ Facebook Can Delete Your Business Account if its created as a Personal Profile
Facebook states that maintaining a profile for anything other than an individual person is a violation of Facebook’s Statement of Rights and Responsibilities.
They also state that If you don’t convert your profile to a Page, you risk permanently losing access to the profile and all of your content. You have been warned!
There has been one report of a Victorian agent having their substantial account deleted because they did not follow this rule. As that agency found out if your business’ profile gets shut down by Facebook for violating this rule, your friends list will vanish with it. All your hardwork is gone and there is no way back.
2/ Personal Profiles are limited to 5000 pages
Now there are not too many agencies out there with thousands of fans but in a few years time this will become more and more common. Personal Profiles are hard limited to 5000 friends but Business Pages have have as many fans as you want.
3/ Business Pages get widgets, visitor stats and demographics and adverts.
Facebook Insights allows you to view alot of information about about the user activity on your page. This is not just visitor analytics but also the demographic break-downs of your visitors, all of which is not available to individual profiles.
Facebook also offers a range of widgets for businesses to integrate into their websites driving more fans business page. The latest Opengraph widgets rolled our recently convert at much higher rates which means that those who use a Personal Profile for their business are missing out on a huge avenue to grow their audience on Facebook.
4/ Better Design and Feature Set for Businesses
Facebook pages have recently undertaken a number of overhauls and more are planned for the future. You can now navigate and interact with other areas of Facebook as your Page such as like and comment on other Pages as your Page.
Till recently those who used a Personal Profile for their business were stuck as the conversion process to a business pages was complex involving manually inviting all your friends to become fans.
Facebook has now created a conversion tool to allow you to convert a Personal Profile to a Business Page.
This is great news for people who incorrectly setup a personal page as a business page. If you don’t convert your profile to a page you will run the risk of permanently losing access to the profile, all friends/fans and all other associated content.
To convert your personal profile first read everything on this help center page http://www.facebook.com/help/?page=18918.
This page also provides you the necessary link to start the migration process.