A number of well-known companies have lost their Facebook Page (and tens of thousands of fans) by flouting Facebook’s terms and conditions. Yep, in this online world, we’re all just a ‘delete’ button away from social media obliteration. Eek!
Can Facebook really just delete a Page? Surely not!
Yes, Facebook can delete your Page, and they’re under no obligation to explain why, or to reinstate it. After all, you don’t own Facebook; and it’s a free service. It’s a case of playing by the rules, or being prepared to face Facebook deletion.
Here’s a good, plain-talking blog post about what you can and can’t do on Facebook:
It’s a good article, with a great summary of what’s allowed and what’s forbidden. And there’s more…
More links and resources
Here are some more links, with more in-depth information on what you can and can’t do:
- Page guidelines: https://www.facebook.com/page_guidelines.php
- Customising how your page looks: https://www.facebook.com/help?page=336062209769713
Remember, Facebook’s always changing and evolving, so it’s worth keeping up with their rules. (Yeah, it’s boring reading, but important if you don’t want your Page to vanish.)
Is it still worth using Facebook?
In most cases, the answer will be ‘yes’… provided your customers and prospects are on Facebook! (If they’re not, then you’re wasting your time… there is no point promoting yourself to a non-existent audience.)
Just remember though that Facebook is free, and while that is a good thing, you’re also giving up a degree of control. That’s why it’s so important to collect your own customer data, rather than just relying on Facebook.
The value of collecting your own customer data
I bet that the companies that lost their Facebook Pages were grateful for having their own customer databases. That way, they could still communicate with their clients.
Yet many small businesses aren’t so efficient at collecting customer data. There’s a tendency to think that updating a Facebook Page is enough. But it’s not. As we’ve already seen, you have no control over Facebook. And losing control of your customer data is not a good thing. So make sure that you are:
- Collecting your customer data.
- Obtaining your customers’ permission to use this data to communicate with them.
- Storing this data in a computer database or spreadsheet so you can use it for your marketing.
- Keeping the data up-to-date, i.e. adding new people, and promptly unsubscribing people who request it
- Actually using the data for your marketing, e.g. email newsletters, mail-outs, SMS campaigns, and so on.
More media, more touches, more impact
The other benefit of using Facebook in addition to your other marketing campaigns is that your message is more likely to reach more people.
We’re all so busy these days that we don’t all get time to read each and every email newsletter we’ve subscribed to. So your carefully crafted email newsletter might get deleted without even getting glanced at. Yet that person might still scan their social media profiles, so you’ve got another chance to communicate with that client if you’re on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, etc.
It’s a little bit like fishing: the more lines you put out, the greater the chance of catching the fish. At least that way, if Facebook does hit the ‘delete’ button for your Page, you’ve still got plenty of other lines in the water.