With the current craze over Facebook among college students and now even among older people, it’s almost taboo not to have a profile on Facebook. The popular social networking site boasts around 150 to 200 million users worldwide.
If you’re like most people, you have a decently-filled out profile. You’ve probably listed a few of your favorite movies, put down your high school and posted a couple photos. Now that you’ve gotten this far, it’s time to spread your wings.
Facebook is about social networking, so it’s time to actually do get social and do some networking with people other than your spouse or that crush from high school you really don’t remember. A couple of the best ways Facebook allows users to do this is through fan pages and groups.
The first question is whether to start a fan page or group, or maybe even both. Although they sound similar to one another, fan page and groups are two different Facebook features that accomplish different things. Groups are basically the same on Facebook as they are at other websites. They are general destinations for people with like-minded interests to gather and become members of. Group members can write on the group’s wall, exactly as you could on a profile page, as well as leave topics and posts on the discussion board.
Facebook Groups are good for narrowing in on interests. If you’re a part of an organization in a city, you can use a facebook group for promoting upcoming events or post relevant topics that members would respond to. Although groups can be used for conversation, they often become more of an brand identity, rather than a place for dialoguing with other group members.
Facebook Fan pages on the other hand, although they sound like groups, are actually much different. Fan pages allow the same type of interaction as group pages but with much more options for customization and personalization. Similar to group pages, a Facebook Fan page has a wall and can have a discussion board, but it can also have much more, like Facebook applications, flash and html code. Because of the flexibility of using html code, fan pages can be customized to look similar to a web site. Although fan pages often are pages devoted to a particular athlete, actor or hero, they are quickly becoming much more than that, with pages for marketers, realtors, magazines and writers.
So do you want to create a fan page or group page? If you want a deeper relationship with your members and users who are going to come back after joining, then Facebook Fan pages are the way to go. They offer much more customization and allow further reach and interaction with users. If you have a more targeted audience, then you may want to go with a Facebook Group page.
What have been some of your favorite Facebook Fan pages or Facebook Group pages?