October 18th, 2012

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Facebook’s “Promote” Feature Now Available in the US

Facebook’s Promoted Posts will cost users around $7 each.  This new feature allows Facebook users to pay $7/post to promote their posts and bump important news/announcements, links and photos to higher, more visible positions in their friend’s news feeds.

Facebook first called the Promoted Posts feature “Highlight” when it was initially tested in New Zealand.  Prior to it being available in the United States, Promoted Posts were actually offered in 20 other countries.  It was available to users who had 5000 or less friends and subscribers.

There has been a lot of controversy over the Promoted Posts.  Facebook, to this day, has been a “free and always will be” social sharing platform for people to connect and share information.  With this latest feature being implemented, there are concerns that those who can afford to pay for these Promoted Posts will clog the news feed.  Traditionally, the news feed has featured and ranked content based on popularity and/or engagement, where posts that get lots of likes and comments are shown to more people.  How will this affect and influence Facebook’s algorithm, Edgerank?

The Promote button will appear alongside the Like, Comment and Share buttons already in place on existing published posts.  If a user pays to promote their post, it will not only be higher in position in friends’ news feeds, but it will also appear on more news feeds of friends.  Typically, regular, un-promoted posts are seen by 12%-16% of a user’s friends.

Promoted posts could generate a lot of revenue for Facebook.  The approximate $7/promoted post fee would go 100% to Facebook.

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