Facebook is the largest social network, with 1.1 billion active users worldwide. It has become a favorite online destination for people, businesses and organizations to connect and share information through text, pictures, audio and video. If you are unfamiliar with Facebook, the lingo may not make sense right away. Here are some key terms to know as you get started with your Facebook Page:
- Page—a platform for your practice to connect with potential patients and engage with your existing patients in an open dialog. Patients can follow your Page by “liking” it without the connection having to be reciprocated. When you post to your Page, it will show up in your fans’ news feed for them to read and share.
- Personal Profile—any individual on Facebook has a personal profile. Through your profile, you can share status updates, photos, videos, links and other content. Friends can comment on any content you share and also share their own content with you by posting it to your wall. Businesses and organizations use Pages, rather than profiles; however, you must have a personal profile in order to manage a Page.
- Places—a geo-location feature that allows users to check in wherever they are. Facebook Places can give you a better indication of who is visiting your practice.
- Fan—term given to someone who has “liked” your Page to connect with your practice. Fans will receive updates any time you post new content to your Page. Fans can comment on and share posts you have made with their own network of friends.
- Friend—when you want to connect with someone on Facebook through a personal profile, you “friend” them. Friend connections are mutual, meaning both parties have to agree before the connection is made.
- Like—the Like button provides a simple way for Facebook users to share their approval or endorsement with their network of friends. Users can like an individual post, picture, video or any other content on Facebook. They can also like a Page as a way to provide a recommendation and subscribe to receive updates. Like buttons aren’t just on Facebook, they are all over the web, creating an easy way for users to endorse something without having to be in Facebook.
- Wall—your practice’s own Page with the updates and interactions it contains. People can post content to your wall that is viewable to anyone who has liked your Page.
- News Feed—a feed with updates on what your friends and Pages you have liked do and post on Facebook. Your news feed is only visible to you and is automatically updated. You can view your news feed by “Most Recent” items or “Top News.”
- Comments—almost everything posted to Facebook has a comment field below it for you and anyone interacting with your Page to post a response and facilitate a conversation. It’s vital to check your Page regularly to keep up with comments and respond appropriately.
- Messages—private notes sent between users. They are only viewable to the sender and recipient. Although you cannot send messages to anyone who likes your Page, they can send messages to you. Always check your messages and respond in a timely manner.
Familiarizing yourself with these terms will help you better understand Facebook and how to use it.