A Facebook Profile is the way individual users represent themselves on the site. Typically it contains information about the user’s interests, hobbies, school and work affiliations, and photos.
It is also connected to any Facebook Pages he likes, from a favorite football team to a preferred brand of soda, as well as all the other Facebook users he identifies as friends.
Many users are quite open with their Profile information, and Facebook strongly encourages this. Because the site is free, Facebook’s big moneymaking opportunity comes from charging marketers for
the right to use the personal data its users share; the more data users freely provide, the more potential revenue for the site. Some users have expressed concern over privacy issues, particularly regarding Facebook’s increasingly open view of “public” information on their site. Expanded privacy settings have allowed many users to customize their information as “for friends only,” but most users, especially younger generations, are happy to share every detail of their lives. They understand and appreciate that this means a more personalized site experience and enjoy connecting with the brands they know and love.
Facebook’s original intention was to be a social network for college students, and at one time it required an .edu email address for registration. Later, it expanded to grant membership to high school students,
and finally to people of all ages. However, keeping true to its origins as a service geared to connecting individuals, Facebook has always maintained certain rules for brands and businesses.
One rule many marketers find frustrating is Facebook’s strong distinction between the types of users and how it applies that distinction to Profiles. If you represent a brand or entity other than an individual user, Facebook’s Terms of Service state that you must set up a Facebook Page to represent that brand, business, or public persona, whatever it may be. This includes politicians, sports figures, and other celebrities; even as individuals, they need a Page for their very recognizable self. These Pages offer different choices that are specific to companies, such as business hours, and leave out more personal details, such as hobbies and interests.
Still, Facebook Profiles are the building blocks of the site itself, and you’ll need to set one up before you can do anything else on the site, including creating a Page of any kind . Profiles, and the people they represent, are linked back to every action on Facebook so that someone can be held
accountable for each interaction and piece of content that appears on the site.