Architects and Facebook
I once advertised on Facebook to gain more 'Likes', and it worked pretty well - on the surface. Facebook marketing was opaque to me. I had been able to lure about 20 friends into liking my Architekwiki page and then I was stuck. So I read up on how Facebook advertising works and spent, I think, $50 promoting the page. I now have 121 likes. Most of the new ones are due to spending the $50. Not too bad. But, it seemed odd to me that 80-90% of the new likes came from folks with Hispanic names and no apparent connection to architecture, design, construction or any of the arts. This is not like my Hispanic Twitter followers, who are involved in one of those ways. I was beginning to wonder if FB really was an architectural marketing tool. Then a couple of weeks ago, I stumbled upon the explanation in this YouTube video.
So if paying for 'likes' doesn't provide you with people interested in your page, what does?
I think that the way you have to go about building up the 'likes' for your business page points out some of the limitations of Facebook for Architects. It is pretty similar to advertising in a sports program: the people who see your ad aren't looking for an architect when they see your ad, and they may never be in the market for an architect. Facebook is a peer-to-peer network. Architects usually need a business-to-business network. Do your potential clients have a presence on FB? If you were looking for an architect, how would you go about finding one on FB?
Now, if your specialty is residential design, then you might answer those questions differently. There would be some real advantage in building a following of people who are interested in architecture and who feel connected to you through Facebook. There are some additional tips in this post about how an architect might use social media. And there are several places around the web where you can find some HOW-TOs. This is a manual that will help you start your business page.
Architects and Facebook - For many architects the peer-to-peer and business-to-consumer nature of Facebook's network is just the tool that they need. For many others who need a business-to-business network in order to be found by their potential clients, Facebook just isn't it.