If you're using a personal profile page for your department, once you hit 5,000 friends, you can’t have any more. With a fan page, you don’t have that limit.
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Editor's Note: This is the first tip in the Social Media Quick Tip series. Each week, Law Officer will post a tip that's intended to help law enforcement officers better navigate the world of social media.
Some police departments set up their Facebook (FB) page as a personal profile page; that is, one that’s meant for an individual person. Instead of someone “liking” your page, they become your friend. There are a few downsides to this, but chief among them is that FB means personal profiles to be for individuals and has been known to shut those pages down. Secondly, once you hit 5,000 friends, you can’t have any more. With a fan page, you don’t have that limit.
The good news is that a recent development in FB allows you to turn your friends into fans. If you have 2,000 friends, you can use the FB migration tool and not lose them, instead they are converted into "likes" on a page. But the only other thing that goes with your fans are your profile photos. All your other photos and any other content should be downloaded for reposting on your new fan page.
Learn more directly from Facebook, including information on how to download your information for backup.
Want to learn more about social media, the Internet and law enforcement? Attend the SMILE Conference, which will be hosted by the Chicago Police Department, May 9-11. To learn more or to register, click here. Get $100 off the registration cost by using the code lawofficersmiler.
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