A common discussion among small businesses centres around Facebook, the difference between Profiles, Pages and Groups and how they apply to online businesses. The distinction is an important one as a business may have their Facebook profile deleted if it does not conform to Facebooks terms.
In a nutshell the distinctions are as follows:
Profile - this represents a real person and cannot be used to represent a business under Facebook's terms and conditions. In fact they go to some lengths to make it difficult for you to sign up with names that look like business names. All Facebook users have a Profile - it is the account you use to log in with. It is also the account you use to manage Pages or Groups. You should only have one Facebook profile. Generally you and your friends can post on your profile page (timeline).
Page - this represents a business, organisation, public figure or cause. Most businesses in Ashburton that want to be represented on Facebook should have a Page that uses the "Local Business or Place" template. This template allows you to create posts and events and also allows you to specify opening times and tell people where you are so they can find you. Only page administrators can post to a Page so your marketing messages don't get lost in chatter. The Ashburton Information Hub is sPage et up in this way. For more advanced users, Pages provide sophisticated marketing tools and shop capability. A page can be managed by several users (logged in with their own Facebook profiles) and a user can set up and manage several Facebook pages.
Group - this is a chat forum used to represent a common interest. Search Facebook for "ASHBURTON, Devon", this is an example of a group. A group may be Public, or restricted to members. It is a great way to set up a place for members of a community or organisation (e.g. the Chamber of Trade) to communicate with each other. Facebook also encourages you to set up a Group for any Page you create which is a good way to communicate with your customers without cluttering up your page with chatter - but this may mean more work so consider it carefully.
For more useful information about the distinctions click here.