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A hyperlocal news site decided to kill its website and focus only on its Facebook page. The owner/publisher shares his lessons learned.

What I find really interesting about what Brad Rourke had to say about his Facebook venture is in the very last paragraph. Specifically:

In closing, Sonderman asked Rourke how he would handle Facebook strategy if he worked for a mainstream news organization, and he replied, “I would look at it as a place rather than a source of eyeballs. I would have a Facebook bureau.”

In other words, just as a news agency would have a separate bureau for its satellite editions, it should consider a separate bureau for its Facebook edition. For instance, a Miami newspaper that also prints a great deal of news about Jacksonville might have a Jacksonville bureau, complete with its own editorial staff, graphic department, and ad sales team. Rourke is suggesting that news agencies adapt the same strategy to Facebook.

I think it’s a good idea, not only for news organizations but for businesses as well. What can you do to make your Facebook page stand out? How can you attract new business through your Facebook page? By making it an entity all its own.

This is a novel idea and one worth considering. Businesses should count the cost in terms of human capital and resources. If they can justify the expense, rather than try to drive traffic from Facebook to their website, maybe they should try to capitalize on the traffic they get in their Facebook bureau.

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