With Facebook growing into a social media giant, small businesses are beginning to harness its awesome power. Many businesses however are making vital marketing errors that affect their Fan Base, and overall online social presence. Here are 5 common mistakes to avoid.

Blunder #1-Broadcasting

Facebook is about authenticity, innovation and creative posts, so if you are not engaging with customers in a way that makes it feel genuine then there is a good possibility you will see a slow in engagement. Remember, potential customers go to Facebook to make a connection or feel like they are part of a community, not to be blasted with useless generic information.

Blunder #2- Not Investing Time

Underestimating the time it takes to create a successful Facebook strategy could result in a relationship collapse, not only with new Fans but with pre-existing Fans who have come to expect timely responses to their posts and queries. Unlike traditional advertising, Facebook is not a “set it and forget it” tool, it needs to be updated and monitored continuously.

Blunder #3- Being Boring and Predictable

Think about what kind of content your fans would find interesting, funny or useful with planning a post. Use a wide range of media including, status updates, photos, videos, and multimedia. Creating filler content by auto- publishing from a blog or twitter can also damage your efforts. With Facebook’s recent change to publish items in a news feed on a priority system, automated posts are usually at the bottom and may never be seen by your fans.

Blunder #4-Failure to Learn Facebook Mechanics and Tools

Explore all of Facebook’s functionality and create a custom welcome page for your fans. Be aware of your profile image. Most companies upload a version of their logo, but the resulting thumbnail image that shows up in news feeds is only a portion of your profile image capturing a few letters in the middle of their logo. This partial image will be how your Fan’s see your brand in their news feed. Using Facebook Insights to see what content receives the most engagement is a great tool to optimize your future posts.

Blunder#5- Violating Facebook’s Terms

Many businesses are building a community on a personal page instead of a proper Facebook business page; others fail to abide by Facebook’s rules about running contests. Another area to be cautious of is Tagging an image you may not have permission to tag. Tagging people to get their attention is a violation of Facebook rules and will leave your site open to review and possible shut down.

To avoid these mistakes, take time to learn about Facebook, educate yourself on how to build and sustain an audience and engage with your Fans just like you would in real life. That is what sets a small business apart from a large corporation, its ability to actively engage with customers.