Nice timing: Facebook debuts “Facebook for Business”

Wed Jul 27, 2011 10:14am EDT

On Tuesday Facebook debuted a step-by-step online guide aimed at helping small businesses use the social networking site. The company is billing the new web page, found at Facebook.com/business, as an “online education center” that gives directions on such things as how to set up a profile page, create targeted ads and deals, and interact with customer feedback online.

The timing is interesting, as it comes just a week after Google began shutting off all company profiles on its Google+ social network. The search engine giant says it’s just company policy to restrict Google+ access to individual users, a stance that has inspired a good deal of controversy in recent days.

Facebook’s new business web page does not come along with any new features — it simply puts a lot of information that may be handy for small businesses in one place. Perhaps most importantly, it serves as a nicely timed reminder that unlike Google+, Facebook encourages companies to use its service for company branding. “Facebook allows small businesses to create rich social experiences, build lasting relationships and amplify the most powerful type of marketing –- word of mouth,” a Facebook spokesperson wrote in an email on Tuesday afternoon. “We created Facebook.com/business to make it even easier for people to reach these objectives and grow.”

This represents the second time in a month that Facebook has followed up Google+ news with its own feature launch. Earlier in July, Facebook announced a partnership with Skype to bring video-chat features within the social networking site — just one week after Google+ made waves with its own in-app video-chat feature called Hangouts.

The timing of these events could certainly be coincidental, but it does look like Facebook is taking Google’s recent entry into the social-networking landscape seriously and is increasing its feature updates and user satisfaction initiatives in turn. The new competition may be stressful for Zuckerberg and company, but ultimately it’s great for consumers if both Google and Facebook continue to bring their A games.

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Comments (2)
rickvidallon wrote:
All the hours you spend building your social networking pages for business purposes could fall by the wayside someday. Either the fad site you are using will fade or become passé, or external forces will monkey wrench your success.

Facebook is only one of many Web 2.0 social networking sites available over the Internet. There are many, many more, such as:

Flickr, LinkedIn, Twitter, MySpace, SMS.ac, Photovations, Kaboodle, Orkut, StumbleUpon, Behance, AOL Buddies, Spaces.live, Xanga, Tagged, Reunion, Classmates, Experience Project, MeetUp, SQUIDOO, Hubpages, How to do things, Friendfeed, Merchantcircle, Yelp, Google KNOL, Aboutus.org, Koynce and Google Profiles.

But did social networking ever exist before all these websites? Well, kind of.

Remember back to the heady days of Geo Cities and Angle Fire where people would flock in mass to build there first website to share, communicate or show-off their nerdy prowess.

Then for the truly nerdy, there was IRC Chat and Usenet Groups.

Given the latest growth trend in these fad websites and applications, there is one constant you can depend on. Eventually, the owners, companies or corporations will do what is in their best interest or the interest of their shareholders.

Jul 27, 2011 8:35am EDT  --  Report as abuse
NedTheVoice wrote:
Huh… I am not sure letting in businesses is a boon to Facebook. I think they might have jumped the gun on this one.

Jul 28, 2011 3:39am EDT  --  Report as abuse
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