In speaking to various groups and business owners, I get a the most questions about Facebook. What is the difference between a Facebook profile and a page?

How can I use it to promote my business?  First of all, realize that your personal Facebook profile is not the place to promote your business. It is like sending a Christmas card to someone with your business card in it…not socially appropriate.

Instead, set up a Facebook Page to promote your business.

So, how effective are Facebook Fan Pages? Are they actually generating customers and leads for your business?

Hubspot’s Inbound Marketing Blog recently highlighted how one business is using Facebook fan pages to help their business:

Dessert Gallery, a popular Houston-based bakery and café chain, experimented with a Facebook Fan Page to measure how helpful the popular social media site really is. They set up a “sweet” Fan Page and updated it regularly with pictures, contests, reviews and other items designed to interact with their customers. Three months later, they surveyed over 13,000 customers on shopping behavior and store evaluations and received a significantly higher and more positive response from those customers who became Facebook fans.

In fact, the study found that compared with typical Dessert Gallery (DG) customers, the company’s Facebook fans:

  • Made 36% more visits to DG’s stores each month
  • Spent 45% more of their eating-out dollars at DG
  • Spent 33% more at DG’s stores
  • Had 14% higher emotional attachment to the DG brand
  • Had 41% greater psychological loyalty toward DG

Creating a Facebook Business Page helped the bakery chain reach a wider range of people and connect with them on a more personal level. More people felt inclined to visit and spend more money, and a large portion of customers felt increased loyalty to the brand.