01/Sep/2014 - Last News Update: 14:03

Facebook tests 'pay to promote post' tool

Category: Technology

Published: 11th May 2012 13:11:48

Facebook has started testing a system that lets users pay to highlight or promote posts.

By paying a small fee users can ensure that information they post on the social network is more visible to friends, family and colleagues.

The tests are being carried out among the social network's users in New Zealand.

Facebook said the goal was to see if users were interested in paying to flag up their information.

The tests of the "pay to promote" system were discovered by a Facebook user in Whangarei, reported New Zealand's news magazine Stuff.

At first, said Stuff, the user thought the offer to pay to promote a post was a con trick.

A Facebook spokesperson confirmed to the BBC the offer was genuine.

"We're constantly testing new features across the site," said the spokesperson. "This particular test is simply to gauge people's interest in this method of sharing with their friends."

Different methods of highlighting posts were being tested, said the spokesperson. These would see a range of charges being levied to make posts more visible. Comments on the tests suggest the highest price being charged was £1.25 ($2) while others cost 25p or 50p.

Payments could be made via credit card or PayPal.

The spokesperson said some of the methods it was trying out would incur a charge but others would highlight a post for free. The spokesperson would not be drawn on when the test would end or if it would be tried in other territories.

"We're going to see a lot more ideas like this where they are testing out different ways to try to make money," said Ian Maude, internet analyst at Enders Analysis.

Both Facebook's imminent stock market flotation and a recent slowdown in revenue growth were helping to concentrate its attention on ways to make money, he said.

"In the last few years their overall revenue has grown much more quickly than their audience," he said. However, he said, that rapid growth had slowed in the last six months and had perhaps prompted it to experiment.

The flotation will add more pressure, said Mr Maude but he added that the way the stock would be split could lighten that burden a little as Mark Zuckerberg would be left 57% of the shares.

"He's always said he wants to make money to run the company not run the company to make money," said Mr Maude.

Source:
BBC News External Link Show Citation

Latest News

Harvard Citation

BBC News, 2012. Facebook tests 'pay to promote post' tool [Online] (Updated 11th May 2012)
Available at: http://www.ukwirednews.com/news/1428010/Facebook-tests-pay-to-promote-post-tool [Accessed 1st Sep 2014]

News In Other Categories

  • Bristol Academy extends reach overseas with first foreign students

    With the doors to its brand new £1million training centre officially open, one of the UK's leading apprentice training providers, Bristol based S&B Automotive Academy, is showcasing its world-class facilities by launching a series of foreign student exchanges for the first time in its 41-year history. To get a flavour of what life is like as an apprentice in the UK, the Academy hosted 16 apprentice engineers and bus drivers from the G9 Automotive College in Hamburg, Germany, as part of a Europe-wide vocational training initiative called the ‘Leonardo Programme’ with support from the European Social Fund. In a reciprocal arrangement, S&B will be sending nine apprentices to Germany during February 2012 so that they can get an appreciation of life in the automotive industry on the Continent. A further three German exchange groups are being planned for next year. Designed to assist the development of vocational skills and training across Europe, including work placements for trainees, the Leonardo Programme has a budget of €1.75bn, which is helping to encourage UK organisations to work with their counterparts abroad. In what is expected to be another challenging year for employers in the UK automotive sector, S&B’s Chief Executive, Jon Winter, claims that the exchange initiative will bring many benefits to the Academy and its apprentices: “In a world of global automotive brands, it’s important for our learners to understand the international context of the industry they have chosen to make their career. This new exchange programme will enable apprentices and Academy staff alike to achieve a better understanding of the challenges and opportunities within the automotive arena in Europe. With the Academy’s influence also extending to the USA and Asia, there’s every possibility that this initiative could move further afield in the future.” Continued Winter: “The need for skilled technicians across the world is on the increase and we actively encourage our apprentices to look at broader horizons during their training. Many of them have already learned the phrase ‘Vorsprung durch Gelehrtheit’, quite simply, ‘Advancement through learning.” In the 2010/11 academic year, S&B doubled the number of successful Apprenticeships over the previous year with some 350 apprentices graduating from the Academy. At the same time, achievement levels reached an all-time high with an overall success rate of 85%. For those learners on the Advanced Apprenticeship three-year programme, success rates were even higher, at over 98%. PHOTO CAPTION: As part of their exchange visit, S&B Automotive Academy arranged for the German apprentices to visit Hampshire bus operator, Bluestar, at its Barton Park depot. The students are pictured with S&B’s Andy West (3rd right) and Steve Prewett, Bluestar’s Area Engineering Manager (2nd right). Ends http://www.sandbaa.com
  • Binchester Roman Fort development fears allayed

    The owners of a Roman fort near Bishop Auckland, County Durham, have moved to allay fears that it could be developed following it being put up for sale.
  • Russia and China launch gas pipeline

    Russia and China have begun the construction of a new gas pipeline linking the countries, with a ceremony in the Siberian city of Yakutsk.
  • Electronic nose 'sniffs faeces to detect infection'

    Sniffing faeces with an "electronic nose" can detect strains of bacteria that can cause deadly infections, say UK researchers.
  • Nokia maps to appear on Samsung phones

    Nokia's mapping service will soon be appearing on Samsung smartphones.
  • WAO: Cardiff council 'is not planning effectively'

    Cardiff council is failing to improve its services because of "fragmented leadership and management", says Wales' public spending watchdog.