Facebook has introduced a new product called “Facebook at Work,” geared exclusively toward offices. Currently, the new product does not include ads or apps.
For now, the app, simply called “Work,” is only available to pilot partners via iOS, but the company has plans to roll it out nationally soon. Work is modeled after the system that Facebook offices use to pass messages, share news, and plan meetings. Facebook at Work will allow users to construct new office accounts separate from personal accounts, then link work and personal Facebook profiles for easy navigation between the two. A rep for the company promises, “employees’ Facebook at Work info is safe, secure, confidential, and completely separate from their personal Facebook profile.”
Right now, Facebook at Work does not include advertisements and will not gather data. But the company hasn’t ruled out monetizing the product by including ads, nor has it excluded the possibility of making Facebook at Work a paid service.
A Facebook spokesperson tells ClickZ, “We’re just getting started. We’re ready to start testing with a few partners, so it’s too early to discuss future plans. Right now we’re looking forward to getting feedback from companies about their experience using Facebook at Work, we’re not thinking about monetization plans. It’s in line with how we typically launch products: focus on growth first, monetize later.”
Facebook will most likely start to monetize with an eye on IT budgets, according to Krista Neher, chief executive (CEO) of Boot Camp Digital. “I would expect to see add-on services and custom apps, where Facebook can start to get a piece of IT budgets,” says Neher.
Though Facebook at Work has a ways to go before it can compete with other platforms, such as Google Apps for Work, Roger Katz, CEO of Friend2Friend, believes pushing for adoption could lead to big payouts for the social media giant.
“B2B social remains a huge area of potential for Facebook,” says Katz. “However, Facebook has work to do to get enterprise users comfortable with Facebook delivering an ‘@work’ as well as an ‘@home’ identity.”
With more and more customers turning to social platforms like Twitter when they need help with a company’s products or services, social customer care ... read more