With the launch of Facebook for Business, not only was the social networking giant able to make it easier for small businesses to utilize Facebook features to create comprehensive and effective marketing campaigns, but also, take a jab at its newest competitor, Google+, which has been criticized for its seemingly absent business specific features.
The Facebook sub-site conveniently launched amid criticism of Google+ boasts no new additions and instead centralizes all business related Facebook features into a single, user-friendly interface (a one stop shop for Facebook marketing). While larger brands have already invested both time and money into the creation of well-established and interactive Facebook campaigns, many small businesses have been left on their own to decode the sometimes tricky to use Facebook business features. Facebook ads have been deemed particularly troublesome and have even provoked the development of third party businesses to handle the job. Facebook for Business is meant to combat this confusion and make it simple for smaller companies to substantiate their pages and create comprehensive, results-oriented Facebook campaigns. A Facebook spokesperson commented on the launch saying, “Facebook allows small businesses to create rich social experiences, build lasting relationships and amplify the most powerful type of marketing – word of mouth. We created Facebook.com/business to make it even easier for people to reach these objectives and grow.”
Facebook for Business offers guidelines on how to:
1. Establish pages, or for those few Facebook illiterates who have managed to resist the peer pressure of more than 750 million users, sites to create a sense of community among fans and for a company to interact with (potential) consumers
2. Develop targeted ads based on fans’ profile information (age, location, interest, etc.)
3. Utilize sponsored stories to drive word of mouth
4. Develop apps using Facebook Platform
Facebook for Business delves into even greater, yet easy to understand explanations of the purpose and how to of each feature.
Yes, Google+ dropped the ball when it failed to anticipate business interest in its new social networking site and yes, Facebook was quick to strike, taking full advantage of its competitor’s vulnerability, but as the social networking newbie, we’ve got to cut Google+ some slack. Facebook has had years to perfect its power house. We can’t disregard Google+ after a matter of weeks and a few glitches. It’s not as if Facebook developed something revolutionary with its for business subsite (if you ask me, it was just a matter of some rearranging and condensing). This is just one small battle in what is sure to be an intense war between Facebook and Google+. Who will be the next to strike?