Companies that use Facebook as a way of advertising and establishing their brand will have to come to terms with a somewhat drastic change the social networking giant is making with regards to how users will interact with corporate entities online. The company recently released a memo to advertisers detailing the way brand profiles will appear on Facebook once the change goes into effect. Many believe the user experience will be altered for the worse as a result.
In the past, brand profiles on Facebook have been very clearly distinguished from individual human users. People can choose to "Become a Fan" of a brand, product or company profile-in contrast to clicking "Like" for a status update or photo. Now however, Facebook is proposing that users interact with brand pages by clicking "Like," rather than having the option to "Become a Fan." Essentially, this means that users would interact with brands in much the same way they interact with each other.
"People click 'Like' almost two times more than they click 'Become a Fan' every day," states the Facebook memo. "'Like' offers a simple, consistent way for people to connect with the things they are interested in. People will make more connections across the site, including with your branded Facebook Pages."
And yet, there are some who wonder whether Facebook or the many advertisers with brand pages will suffer because of this move to remove some of the transparency involved in brand interaction. For instance, the aforementioned difference in click rate itself indicates that users are well aware of the difference between "Like" and "Become a Fan," meaning it affects their decision to click or not.
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