How to set up a Facebook fan page for a department or program

A Facebook fan page can be a great way to promote the activities of your department or program, showcase accomplishments and events, engage with students, faculty, staff, alumni, and the community, and create a forum for conversation and discussion.

Facebook Fan Page vs. Facebook Group

It's usually better to create a fan page rather than a group for your department or program. As opposed to a group, a fan page allows you to set a distinct URL, access visitor statistics, appear in search engine results, use third-party applications, and create events. Fan pages are also a better fit for your followers and fans as they are visible to people not registered with Facebook and allow them to leave comments and “likes.”

How to create a Facebook Fan Page:

  1. To set up a Facebook fan page for your department or program, first secure the approval of your department chair or supervisor. Unlike your personal Facebook page, on this page you will be speaking for the university.
  2. To create a fan page, you'll need to have a Facebook account. You can set up this account with your personal UTC e-mail account (fan pages keep your personal account information private) or you can set up the account with a general departmental e-mail account. Go to Facebook and fill out the form on the homepage to set up a new account.
  3. Once you've set up your Facebook account, go to Facebook and log in with your user name and password.
  4. Then go to Facebook's 'Create a Page'.
  5. You may want to use the category "Local > Education" or you may prefer to use "Brand, Product or Organization > Nonprofit."
  6. For "Name of Page," choose something that will clearly identify your organization.
  7. Then click on the "Create Page" button.
  8. Now you're ready to start adding items to your fan page. Here are some ideas to help you build your Fan Page:
  • Avoid sending too many updates to your fans.
  • Mention when your website is updated, whether it's new photos, an upcoming event, etc.
  • Post links to drive traffic to your department or organization's Web site.
  • Add other relevant Facebook pages to your "favorite" pages.
  • Monitor comments on your Facebook wall daily and respond to those that warrant it. Encourage two-way communication. Delete those comments that include personal attacks, vulgarity or racial/other slurs. However, do not delete comments simply because they are critical—rather, respond on the wall or directly to the individual with additional information.
  • Ask staff and co-workers to "Share" or "Post" to your Facebook page.
  • Ensure all comments also follow the guidelines above for professional university communications.