In the world of social networking, Facebook reigns supreme.
These days more and more companies, brands, organizations and even bands are using the social networking platform to improve their visibility, consolidate their target audience, and stay connected with their customers or fans.
Setting up a Facebook fan page or group is free, fast, and simple enough that almost anyone can do it.
The first thing you’ll want to do before setting up a Facebook Page or Group is to set up a Facebook profile of your own, if you don’t already have one.
Although Facebook Pages can be created without an account linked to them, every Group needs an administrator – that person sets up and maintains the group, and his or her Facebook profile will be linked to it.
Since most people these days already have Facebook profiles, you might be able to skip this step.
If not, head over to Facebook and sign yourself up – the process is free, takes only minutes, and all you need to get started is a valid email address.
Once you’ve got your Facebook account set up, you’re ready to start creating your Pages or Groups.
It’s important when choosing whether to create a Page or a Group to note that Facebook no longer allows “fake” Pages or unofficial fan Pages – although it’s perfectly fine to set up Groups for that purpose.
To set up a Facebook Page, simply visit Facebook’s “Create a Page” center, at facebook.com/pages/create.php and follow the step-by-step instructions.
Facebook will ask you for a category and a name, and will ask you to certify that you are authorized to set up the page, finally collecting a “digital signature,” simply a text field in which you type your full name.
Once you’ve finished that, you’ll arrive at the basic Page, where you can start adding media like videos and photos, linking to external content, posting status updates, or generally “filling out” the Page with information about your band, company, organization, or whatever you’re using Facebook to market or advertise.
Groups are typically less authoritative, but more interactive than Pages.
In order to create Groups, you’ll need to be logged in to your Facebook account before visiting facebook.com/groups/create.php, clicking the “Create a New Group” button and following the creation process.
Setting up a group requires slightly more information than setting up a Page, but can be done by anyone, not just an authorized individual.
You’ll need to choose a group name, a network to whom the group will be available (chosen from among the networks your profile belongs to), and a group category.
Additionally, you’ll have the option of adding information like recent news, location or email address.
Once you’ve finished that process, and clicked the “Create Group” button, you’re ready to go!
Maintaining Pages and Groups is a fairly similar process.
You can add rich media like pictures, videos, events and links, as well as adding biographical information, status updates, or just about anything else that people share on Facebook.