With Social Media now the Buzz Word of nearly every business around the globe, many are scrambling and rushing to create their Facebook accounts and tackle the new marketing mediums. Unfortunately, there are a few rules that need to be followed when creating your Facebook business page.

Time & time again we’re seeing businesses break these rules only (usually without knowing mind you) only to have the accounts removed as a Terms of Service Violation a few weeks later.

picture-4Basically, the only thing you really must know is that Facebook has made a clear distinction between “Profiles” and “Pages,” and that distinction is this, profiles are for individuals only and pages are for businesses.

Businesses can have a page but not a profile. I’ve seen this time and time again where businesses create profiles only to have them removed weeks later. Facebook is very clear and swift on implementing their TOS.

Businesses can have a page that allows people to become “fans.” A business cannot be a person and does not have the ability to add “friends”

Business pages can do all sorts of cool things like add photos, status updates, wall posts but it differs from that of a personal profile where the ability to have friends comes into play. So for example, Pizza (first name) Hut (last name)  is not a person you can become friends with. Pizza Hut can have a page and you can become a “fan.”

So how is a Page different from a Profile? According to Facebook’s Pages TOS:

“Each user is permitted to maintain a single account, which is represented by a profile. Profiles can only be used to represent an individual, and must be held under an individual name. This account can also be used to manage multiple Facebook Pages that represent businesses or other organizations. You may only create Facebook Pages to represent real organizations of which you are an authorized representative, and fans of these Pages won’t be able to see that you are the Page admin, or have any access to your personal account.

All personal site features, such as friending and messaging, are also for personal use only and may not be used for professional promotion. If you add a user as a friend, for example, this person will be invited to be a friend of your profile and not your Page. Using personal site features for professional promotion, or creating unauthorized Pages, may result in your account being warned or disabled.”

Making sense?

Now let’s say you wanted have a Facebook page for your business but have NO interest whatsoever of being on Facebook yourself as an individual. Facebook addresses this as well in their Pages TOS.

“Business accounts are designed for individuals who only want to use the site to administer Pages and their ad campaigns. For this reason, business accounts do not have the same functionality as personal accounts. Business accounts have limited access to information on the site. An individual with a business account can view all the Pages and Social Ads that they have created, however they will not be able to view the profiles of users on the site or other content on the site that does not live on the Pages they administer. In addition, business accounts cannot be found in search and cannot send or receive friend requests.”

Once you understand the distinction your business can easily enter the social media world and the exciting new world of Facebook. I think by now it should be making sense.

More of less, all of this information can be found within Facebook’s Terms of Service. You can view the section on Pages here as it directly relates to business usage.