No ads. Not free. Not personal. Like most Intranets, Facebook Workplace won’t be accessible to marketers. The ad-free version of Facebook, called “Workplace,” debuted on Monday and is available at a “pay only for active use” price. What it promises companies is access to employees via their smartphones in ways that work email apps may not be able to duplicate.
“We’ve brought the best of Facebook to the workplace — whether it’s basic infrastructure such as News Feed, or the ability to create and share in Groups or via chat, or useful features such as Live, Reactions, Search and Trending posts,” according to Monday’s Facebook Newsroom post. “This means you can chat with a colleague across the world in real time, host a virtual brainstorm in a Group, or follow along with your CEO’s presentation on Facebook Live.”
So an app consumers use to recharge during tense toil is going to be mentally associated with work. Here’s what that could mean for marketers:
It may not be great for marketers who want to advertise to users on personal accounts for Facebook to be mentally associated with work.
While workers may not say so to their employers, chances are the idea of connecting with friends and family is more fun than the concept of listening to a CEO speech.
Facebook lets marketers target its users, including based on which Reactions they use to their ads and other brand-related content. As I mention in my video “Are Facebook Reactions Good for Marketers?” many marketers want to target consumers with ads when they’re happy.
A Different Device
Privacy fears may move Facebook users onto different devices for their Workplace apps. The Facebook Newsroom post does say Workplace will be separate from the personal accounts.
So staffers could install Workplace on one of the 4.1 devices they own, according to Forrester Senior Analyst Susan Bidel, who spoke last month at Content Marketing World 2016 in Cleveland. That 4.1 number is the average, she added. Millennials own more than that.
Facebook says brands are using Workplace — the new name for Facebook at Work, which the social media giant started testing more than a year ago — to get employees excited about digital and mobile working environments.
OK. But to keep a work/life balance, that could mean the Workplace phone goes in a drawer at home at night.
Part of employees' potential concern, too, could be the social media policy at some companies — those that require password information from employees and claim ownership of the content staffers create there. While Facebook makes it clear that Workplace and personal accounts will be separate, it remained unclear if the Workplace accounts would have different logins. A Facebook spokesperson didn’t immediately return Target Marketing’s request for comment on Thursday.
What do you think, marketers?
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