Facebook Policy Changes and How Brands Can Benefit

By Claudia TitoloEvery day, we hear about something new and exciting on Facebook. Yesterday, Facebook not only introduced their new privacy settings, but they also updated their policies. In case you’re interested in the privacy settings, check out this great blog post.  Looks like they’re following Google +’s lead on privacy settings.

There has been a lot of talk about some industries finding Google+ to be a safer and more private space. ultimately looking to transition from FB to Google+. It sure looks like Facebook heard that loud and clear!

Do you think these changes are a direct response to Google+?

Now, for all you social media marketers and social media obsessed brands, this is for you.

Facebook recently announced that they have removed the following polices:

FPP IV.4: You must provide users with an easily identifiable "skip" option whenever you present users with an option to use a Facebook social channel. FPP IV.5: You must not provide users with the option to publish more than one Stream story at a time.

The removal of FPP IV.4 is definitely where users are affected the most. Their explanation for the removal is as follows, “it is no longer necessary in light of our existing policy which requires that apps obtain user consent whenever publishing on a user’s behalf.”

For this blog, I’ll focus primarily on FPP IV.5. Before these changes, marketers were only able to ask users to publish a story on one stream at a time. Now, that has all changed. In one easy step, users can share a story on their wall, a friend’s wall, or in a group. For marketers that admin certain pages, you can even share the story on that Fan Page!

So, what exactly does this mean for brands?

Sharing will be easy! When Facebook moved the “Suggest to Friends” button from under the Profile Picture all the way to the bottom of a Fan Page (oh, and they just called it “Share”) it’s safe to say marketers were a little upset.  Finally, they’ve come back and redeemed themselves in the marketer's eyes. This new policy will allow marketers to ask their fans to share the page, and direct them to the Share button at the bottom. Users will then be able to post on their wall, their friend's wall (more than one at a time), or in a group.

When you ask your fans, “Share this page with your friends and help us get to 100,000 fans by Halloween!”, fans can just click share on that post and then post about it on more than one of their friend’s wall, all in one easy step!

What about users?

Do they even know about it?

Well, I just don’t think that they’re really aware of it right now. As a marketer, when you call out this new functionality, make sure to explain the change to the fans. Even if you link to a quick Note that explains it, it might be helpful. Otherwise, most users may not even know about it.

How do you think these policy changes will affect Brands on Facebook?