Companies that must grapple with whether to maintain their Facebook pages in-house or outsource them to firms - thus adding another line item to their budgets – are finding the decision harder to make.For while Facebook is indeed enhancing its own features for DIY users, third-party providers are also beefing up their own offering. The latest example of the former is new functionality Facebook appears to be testing that gives page administrators “per post” data.
Spotted by an Inside Facebook reader, the new tab, found in Page Insights, includes such data as impressions per post and the total percentage of a Page’s fans that left feedback on the post.Before this test, admins could only see daily impressions and feedback data in Insights, Inside Facebook said, noting that the enhancement could compete with certain low-end page management companies. Still, some level of in-house skill is required even with this new data, it added: “To pull actionable lessons from the Insights data, admins will have to do some legwork in Excel.”
Earlier this year Facebook also launched a private beta of tools that eventually will roll out to a general audience. These provide new parent-child management structure for Places, allowing companies to administrate all the Places pages of the local instances of their business.
Page management providers have been steadily beefing up their own Facebook-oriented offerings in the meanwhile. Efficient Frontier recently acquired Context Optional, a provider of enterprise social marketing solutions. The point of the acquisition, though, was specifically for Context Optional’s page management platform, in order to allow Efficient Frontier to offer a unified Facebook fan retention and optimization service.
Another recent acquisition along these lines was Webs's purchase of Pagemodo earlier this year. Pagemodo’s Pagebuilder is an online tool that enables small businesses to design their own custom Facebook pages.
At the same time there are several robust platforms that include Facebook page management in their offerings. These include:
- Buddy Media, which has a tool set to launch, maintain, and measure a Facebook fan page in most languages;
- NorthSocial, which offers a suite of tools to create and manage multiple custom tabs on a Facebook page; and
- SplashLabSocial.com, which features custom Facebook Page design and development services specifically for PR, advertising and marketing agencies, or other professional service firms.