Facebook Seeks More Small Business Customers

Scott Lambert

Less than two weeks after the social media giant reported its best-ever quarterly results, Facebook COO Sheryl Sandberg has been talking about the importance of its ongoing investments and diverse revenue stream. She has emphasized the importance of Facebook’s relationship with small business, just weeks before its first ever Small and Medium Business Council (SMBC) is due to be convened.

“Having both the big brands and the long tail of the SMBs – small- to medium-sized businesses – makes a huge difference,” Sandberg revealed in an interview with CNBC. She noted that Facebook is currently trying to attract more of the latter to advertise with it. Developing this option has required not only making adverts work but also investing in technology that can prove they work. Facebook’s aim has been to show a direct link between people seeing its adverts and actually making purchases.

The SMBC is intended to focus on Facebook’s successes in promoting small business and also win back former SME customers who have become disillusioned with it, largely by highlighting the ways in which it has improved its service.

It is a challenging time for Facebook to take this on, just as complaints have started to flood in about fake "likes" stripping some pages of their value. These are not a case of page owners buying "likes" to make themselves seem more popular but a side effect of other companies doing this. To cover their tracks, people in the business of creating fake "likes" click on other pages as well as those they are promoting. This results in innocent pages looking fake, which can put off genuine users, and becoming unable to determine anything useful from their fan metrics. As Facebook tries to find and remove the fake users making the "likes", business users are calling for a tool that lets them delete "likes" en masse. If this could identify when "likes" were made, the fake ones could potentially be deleted without affecting the established followings.

Problems such as this will be at the forefront of Facebook’s concerns as it undertakes its new campaign for small business engagement. What many business owners will be hoping is that this campaign will also see good deals offered to new customers or to those extending their use of paid advertising on the site. It may also trigger a fresh focus on SMEs by Facebook’s rivals, as it is widely agreed that this is a section of the market where battles are yet to be won.

Scott Lambert

Written by Scott Lambert

For 35 years, Scott has been at the forefront of digital transformation and how it is effectively applied in businesses and organizations to market, sell, and support customers and members more successfully and cost effectively. Scott is President and Co-Founder of Xcellimark, an award-winning digital marketing agency serving clients throughout the U.S., Canada, Central America, and Germany. Xcellimark helps businesses succeed through the implementation of its unique digital marketing and sales approach specifically designed to meet their specific goals and objectives. Scott’s marketing, sales, and operations experience have included key management positions at industry leaders including AT&T, iXL (now SapientRazorfish), eSchool Solutions (now TalentED), and BellSouth, where he led the product development, marketing efforts, and market launch of BellSouth.net, the second public ISP developed in the U.S. Scott is the author of articles highlighted on leading online publishers such as LinkedIn, Business 2 Community, and he was recently featured by LinkedIn in the Entrepreneur magazine article on “No Time for Marketing? Hire a Freelancer.” His engaging personality and wealth of real-world and business experience make Scott a frequently requested speaker. Some of his engagements include being the featured speaker in a series of Orlando Business Journal seminars on Digital Marketing, speaking at the WSI London conference, and at international conferences in Belize. Scott has a Bachelor’s degree in Accounting from the University of Mississippi and a Master’s of Science in the Management of Technology from the Georgia Institute of Technology (Georgia Tech). Scott has been active in global mission efforts and is a board member of Global Teams, a Christian outreach organization. He lives in Winter Springs, FL with his wife Nancy and dog Sadie.

Topics: Social Media

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