Earlier today, Facebook announced that brand pages will now be able to tag other pages in their updates, which in turn will help them reach out their audience. This feature is already available for people. If any of your friend tags you in their photos, that photo goes out to all your friends.
But I have many apprehensions about this update. I feel that brands in India will butcher this to death if this update rolls out here. Why?
1: Be Prepared to See Brands Tagging Random Celebs
Executive 1: Aaj ka Bombay Times padha?
Executive 2: Why? What is there in it?
Executive 1: Today is Salman Khan’s birthday!
Executive 2: Ooooh! Let’s wish him birthday from that FMCG page we handle. Almost 14 million people like him!
Executive 1: Much reach. Many engagement. So smart. Wow.
And it doesn’t matter whether the celeb is associated with that brand or some other. This is definitely going to confuse people.
2: Get Leached by Random Pages
Brands who have spent on media to build a huge community will not appreciate random pages leaching on their reach. We, as Social Samosa, have painstakingly built a sizeable community of social media enthusiasts around ourself. And the last thing we want is for an agency/vendor to tag us in their updates just so they can get into the newsfeed of people who like us.
3: No Need to Advertise To Increase Reach
If I can reach out to the audience of other pages by simply tagging them in my updates, why would I spend money on advertising? But I am guessing Facebook might come up with some solution to this since it will mess with their cash cow. What is that solution? Only time will tell.
4: It Will Confuse the Readers
Even when we sometimes publish reports that have been made by other tools or companies, our community on Facebook assumes it’s been made by us. This page to page tagging will only worsen it. People might just see a tagged update as an update made by that page. Not every person on Social Media is that smart.
5: A Corp Comm Nightmare
I know of brands who have to get all their updates approved from the legal team. Their Facebook community will not read anything that the legal team hasn’t approved of. And here we are, where any page can tag the brand and that piece of content is seen by their users.
6: Arm-twisting with Consumer Complaints
Facebook pages on Consumer complaints will have a rollicking time now. In fact, smart users will go ahead and make a complaints page just so that they can tag the brand with their complaint. They have now found a new arm twisting method.
7: No Consistency for the Brand Page
Only now have brands started realising that communication on Facebook is same as communication via any other media when it comes to brand tonality and personality. Only now have they started investing in making sure the same positioning is translated on social media. There is consistency in imagery too now for a bunch of brands. But all this might be undone by this update. A brands user will now receive multiple updates from multiple brands confusing the hell out of him/her.
8: Messing Up with Communication Flow
If you are a brand coming up with a series of themed content as a part of your big campaign, you don’t want a random post going out to your community members. But thanks to this feature, you run the risk of messing up your communication flow to your audience.
So what can be the possible solutions for this?
Simple. Let brands review which tagged updates should go out to their audience. The same is available for Individual users where they can approve/disapprove any update they are tagged in and only the approved one goes out to their friends. If this featured is extended to brand pages, it will reduce random updates going to people’s newsfeed.
Facebook has stated that it will depend on an algorithm where engagement is a major factor to show the updates to the tagged page’s users. But more than engagement, I feel it should rely on relevancy and authorization. A bollywood celeb wouldn’t want random brand pages to leverage his/her community, right?
What do you think about this update? Was it a good move on the part of facebook? Share with us in the comments below.