Last week, Facebook declared it was going to follow Twitter and introduce verified pages and profiles for high profile brands, celebrities and public figures. With any Facebook change, big or small, there generally follows a swathe of discontent. But it’s not all bad news. Verification was a good move for Twitter, so in the long run I think it will also benefit brands on Facebook. Here’s our highs and lows overview of Facebook’s latest change.
Twitter’s verified pages give a brand credibility. Users are more likely to interact with the actual brand or celebrity, rather than a fake one. When you search for a brand or celebrity, you can easily spot the verified page, rather than clicking through to a fake page.
Facebook verification works the same way. You search for a brand, and it’s easy to spot the verified page, with a little blue badge next to the page, celebrity or public figure name.
Brand credibility is very important in both the Search and Social Media space. It allows you to distance yourself from the competition, especially those who are trying to replicate your brand. As part of our digital marketing strategies, we include a click through optimisation strategy, which aims to increase the chances of your brand links and ads being clicked on. Facebook verification is a big step forward in achieving that goal.
The average Facebook user would verify a page using either a mobile phone number or an email address. At the moment Facebook has a secret selection criteria to determine which pages and profiles get verified. You can’t even request to have an authentic profile or page verified. Our guess is that if you don’t have lots of people copying your brand and/or millions of followers, you’ll have to join a very long queue.
Social Media – like email before it – has turned into one big spam fest. Spam messages from fake celebrities, spam messages from fake brands….it’s often difficult to see the wood for the trees. Hopefully Facebook will begin rolling out the blue button onto official messages from verified profiles and pages, allowing users to easily identify the fraudsters.
Once a scammer, always a scammer. Bedroom bandits work around the clock, piggybacking and copying brands. So whilst verification is a positive step forward for Facebook, it won’t stop fake profiles and duplicate pages appearing. Sure, Facebook are happy for you to report a fake page or brand, but the process can often be longer than you would like, especially if the page is taking engagement and traffic away from your authentic page and main site.
Searching for an authentic brand, celebrity or public figure on Facebook can often lead to a quagmire of impersonators. As well as the main search function, Facebook have also stated that the verified blue button will make it’s appearance in Graph Search results too, with verified pages appearing at the top, which is a big plus for brand visibility on Facebook. The screen grab below, taken from Techzei.com shows Beats by Dre appearing above the Beatles page, simply due to verification.
At the moment, these changes don’t drastically impact your Facebook strategy, but if you have a verified page, you should see some improvement in click through rate.
One to keep an eye on.