SAN FRANCISCO - Ten days after Facebook launched its new webpage format, an effort to become more business-friendly, 8 million brands changed to the format, fueling the social media site€™s success with businesses and brands, Reuters reports.
Businesses see the new ad formats assist in reaching more people on the social network that boasts 845 million members. "If there's a specific message we want to drive, we know this guarantees we'll get in front of them," said Steve Baer, director of strategy at Code and Theory, an agency that ran a paid Dr Pepper promotion.
The move by Facebook highlights its initiatives to increase cash flow as the social network gears up for an initial public offering. Part of its strategy is getting companies and brands to buy ads instead of using the free services. Last year, Facebook raked in $3.7 billion in revenue, 85% generated by ads.
The new brand pages €" which are free €" give businesses the ability to host splashier pages within Facebook. Companies can post coupons on their pages, and pay for the coupon to be seen by a bigger Facebook audience.
Einstein Bros Bagels posted a BYGO sandwich coupon on its Facebook page and paid to have it distributed to a larger audience. "Taking someone who is online and getting them into a restaurant is a real challenge. This does it and at a better rate than other things we've done on Facebook did," said Brian Lambert, director of interactive marketing and loyalty at Einstein Bros.
The bagel chain said its coupon was a success, with 10% of the 32,000 Facebook users who grabbed the coupon using it in a restaurant. Lambert said the social network could tell who got the online coupon and who used the coupon. "Our strategy for (Facebook) is still evolving," he said.
Smaller retailers are using social media like Facebook more as way to boost business.