In a study done in the fourth quarter of 2012 found that “…media plans that included Facebook saw 24 percent more new sales than those that didn't.” (Aggregate Knowledge) And the new round of Facebook enhancements will probably see that figure go up even higher.
Here is a quick roundup of the implications of the announcements made by Facebook last week:
Enlarged News Feed Preview – Facebook Updates that contain links will now appear nearly three times larger in the Users’ News Feeds This change aims to help page owners and advertisers who want to increase engagement, leading users to click more of the links that their friends share. (Inside Facebook)
iPhone Messenger App – Those who have the Facebook App on their iPhones can now call Facebook Friends for free. This new feature allows Facebook Messenger App users to call their friends using their data connection or Wi-Fi. The “free calling” button will appear in the existing app: No update necessary.
Bing & Facebook – Microsoft revealed an update to its Search Engine that adds five times more content from Facebook Friends. To see how it works, go to Bing.com, click Connect to Facebook in the upper right corner, sign in to the social network, and start searching. This takes Social Networking to a new level outside of the “walls” of Facebook. Based on your search term, input from Friends who are connected to Business Pages or have made comments about the search term will appear on the right side of the page. See the Example:
Graph Search –Finally, one of the most significant announcements in this latest update was Graph Search. This is a new way to search within Facebook where people can search for and find anything ever posted by friends on Facebook, including Page likes, check-ins and photos. This is a game-changer in the world of Social Media Marketing. While many of Facebook’s 1 Billion Users will search for social and fun activities, there will be a piece of the market that will boost Businesses on Facebook. Facebook Users can find referrals for service businesses, products, restaurants, etc. and base their purchasing decisions on their Friends’ opinions.
There you have it in a nutshell. But as Facebook looks to leverage its treasure trove of user data, there is sure to be much more to come!