Facebook is launching another effort to make its social networking platform more business-friendly with the introduction of five new levels of page admins. The different tiers allow businesses to segment user access to their Facebook pages, maximizing corporate control while also enabling different types of users to perform certain tasks without having to explicitly request permission.
Different Strokes for Different Admins
As outlined in a chart published on the Facebook site (see below), the five new admin roles are Manager, Content Creator, Moderator, Advertiser and Insights Analyst. The default level for all admins is the one with the broadest access, “Manager,” but site owners can change an admin’s status via drop-down menu.
Site owners cannot modify the privileges granted to a specific admin role, so, for example an Advertiser cannot also be allowed to respond to and delete comments. The tiering includes two admin roles -- Advertiser and Insights Analyst -- which seem to be partially or totally designed to give restricted back-end access to third-party site partners.
Facebook Takes Care of Business
The new five-tiered admin access program appears to be the latest step taken by Facebook to expand from an interpersonal social networking tool to a full-fledged business application and marketing/branding platform.
About two weeks ago, Facebook launched a Facebook Pages Manager mobile app designed to let community managers respond, post and comment on a page, plus post updates and photos, from a smartphone. Thus brands can post updates and photos as the brand, gain access to insights and get push notifications about page activity from mobile devices.
Going back a little further, in March 2012, Facebook introduced Facebook Timeline for Brand Pages, a new page layout for brands that includes a more visual layout. Although preliminary analysis from SRM platform provider Vitrue showed its clients experienced increases in engagement per fan of as much as 190% after switching over to Timeline for Brand Pages (which was mandatory and automatically enacted by Facebook), CMSwire cautioned users they would receive little benefit without tweaking their content to align with the new layout.
Now that Facebook has gone public and will need to produce quarterly gains in revenues and profits, in all likelihood the company will continue rolling out new features and functions aimed at business, rather than personal, users. Of course Facebook will have to make sure not to ignore the needs of personal social networkers, because they represent the audience brands are trying to reach.
It will be interesting to see how Facebook balances the needs of its two audiences in the coming months, and whether taking care of business will alienate any users who just want to share photos of their kids with old high school buddies.