The new Facebook Graph search has the Internet gurus talking about. That may be because the feature affects users differently. A business Facebook page may get different results than a personal page. This new feature may have significant social media marketing benefits for businesses of all sizes.
Essentially a Graph Search gives the user visual search features for people, places, photos or interests. It is a compilation of information offered by friends, or by public information available on Facebook. The information available to users is categorized according to the number of Likes it has gotten.
Essentially, the tool gives you access to information more easily. For instance, when traveling, you could use the tool to find friends, businesses, restaurants or interests in that area.
Internet analysts suggest that the sharing of data between friends could be powerful, but could also have it’s drawbacks, as the average user may have little data to share – or could offer bad results or those that are irrelevant.
However, from a business point of view this could be good news, especially for those business pages that have hundreds and thousands of likes. This may offer great social media marketing opportunities, allowing businesses to market to specific groups more efficiently. McDonald’s could market to a group of fans who go to a local football game on Monday night. So if you are an advertiser with a good reputation and one who has a lot of fans this new Graph search could be very beneficial.
The new Facebook Graph search can help businesses in two ways; first by getting their information exposed and allowing people to find them; secondly, by offering a platform rich in research and development opportunities.
The Research Opportunities
For businesses of all sizes conducting research on a market or on product development can be very expensive. Think of how expensive it is to find a group of people to tell you what they like or dislike about a product. Just think of all those mall polls, or surveyors who come to your house. How many times have you turned them away. Graph Search, on the other hand, is driven by information that Facebook users make. These users freely give their opinions about their likes and dislikes without a company even needing to ask. This graph allows researchers to search through the public data freely available on Facebook.
The only drawback to using the Graph search is that it renders different results for different users, so companies will need to have multiple user profiles to build up their relevant research needs.
The Lead Generating Benefits
Graph Search also increases your opportunities in finding targeted leads. It allows you to target audiences in specific segments based on location, their likes and what their friends likes are. This new tool, according to Brian Blau an analyst at Gartner, could give businesses a better signal of a Web user’s interest.
While this new graph search could be more of a social media marketing advantage to online marketers than it is to the average social user, Facebook, has yet to say whether this new beta-testing graph will be offered to advertisers, giving them the ability to target consumers.
Still, website designers and owners are getting their social media pages ready to take on new likes and fans. If the graph is ever offered to advertisers, they better be prepared when the moment is right. You may want to get help from a social media expert to make sure your fan base and likes pages is ready to take this new challenge on.