Discounts platform enters three cities including St. Louis; marketers to use credit card points to buy ads.
Facebook's seven-weeks-old Deals platform is now open for business in Charlotte, NC, St. Louis, and Minneapolis, bringing its total markets to eight. The move highlights the social site's growing attempts to woo SMBs with marketing and commerce solutions.
A Facebook spokesperson told ClickZ News, "The early feedback from businesses has been positive, and they have been able to find new customers to bring into their stores. Facebook has seen that people are finding a lot of Deals through their friends and that Deals found through friends have higher conversion rates for businesses. We're also seeing an increase in fans of a business after the Deal has run."
Meanwhile, the Palo Alto, CA-based company has expanded its partnership with American Express. Amex's Membership Rewards customers can now utilize their redeemable points to purchase ads on Facebook's self-service platform.
The ads-for-points effort seems to sync up smoothly with Amex's SMB-focused Open program, although Ed Gilligan, vice chairman at New York-based Amex, told The USA Today that all card holders can participate.
"When we ask small-business owners to name their biggest challenge, the answer is always finding new customers," Gilligan said to the daily newspaper.
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Christopher Heine was a senior writer for ClickZ through June 2012. He covered social media, sports/entertainment marketing, retail, and more. Heine's work has also appeared via Mashable, Brandweek, DM News, MarketingSherpa, and other tech- and ad-centric publications. USA Today, Bloomberg Radio, and The Los Angeles Times have cited him as an expert journalist.
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