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How to claim your brand on the social web

Establish a social presence quickly and efficiently

Facebook, Twitter and other social sites now play an integral role in the marketplace, connecting businesses with customers, partners and industries at large. We show you how to quickly establish your social presence and get more out of any social media efforts you may already be making.

Facebook

With more than 600 million users to date, this Facebook thing looks like it could really take off someday. If your company's not on it yet, it should be.

You have two important ways to claim your brand on Facebook. The first is by having a company page where you can share your blog posts, promote special offers, and interact with your customers and people in your industry. The second is by claiming your actual business location on Facebook Places, so users of the geolocation service see valid, up-to-date information about your company.

Setting up a Facebook page is almost as easy as setting up a Twitter account. Log into Facebook with your regular user account and go to Create a Page. Choose the type of page that best fits your company, and then fill out the short form to continue. You'll just need to enter a little bit of basic information to start with, and you can customise your page in a variety of ways later.

If your company has a single location, you'll want to claim its place by clicking the Local Business or Place option on the Create a Page screen. Choose the type of venue you have from the drop-down menu and fill in the address. You may well find that Facebook is already aware of your location, and this process will give you ownership of the Places page, so you can add a photo of your business and update the listing.

Whether you claim a physical business location or just create a company page, Facebook Pages should be a focal point of your social media marketing effort, because it gives your visitors an easy way to keep up with your brand.

In order to claim a branded username for your Facebook page, you'll need to reach a certain threshold of activity on your page. This basically means getting a bunch of people to like your page and comment on your posts. An easy way to hit this threshold is to simply ask your employees, colleagues, family, and friends to go to your page and click Like. Once you've got 100 people liking your page, click Edit on your page and claim a name for your page the same way you would with any username on any other service. From that point forward, you can send people to facebook.com/yourpagename.

As with Twitter, it's critical that the content you post offers actual value for the people who like your page. Be especially wary of posting excessively about deals and offers, or you risk losing fans fast. Once again, a measured stream of valuable content is the best way to build a following. Blasting your fans with a firehose of self-promotion is a sure way to lose them.

NEXT PAGE: YouTube

  1. Establish a social presence quickly and efficiently
  2. Blogs
  3. Twitter
  4. Facebook
  5. YouTube
  6. Tie it all together


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