The Worst Content Marketing Is What Everybody Else Is Doing: How to Get Ahead and Stay ThereContent Marketing Minds: Ingredients of the Tastiest Content [Nutrition Label]From the Corn Field to the Digital Era: Content Marketing Starts with TrustContent Marketing: Is 2014 Really Shaping Up to Be the Year of Video?
Your Customers Aren’t Listening! How to Create Consumer Dialogue that Converts4 Tools for Nonprofit Social Listening and Reputation ManagementThe Promising Role of Social Listening in Treating Health IssuesThe Importance of Social Listening for Brands
- Public Relations
Facebook Testing a Way for Users to Buy Products on the PlatformRise of Social Media in Ecommerce [INFOGRAPHIC]How eCommerce, Augmented and Virtual Reality Will Redefine the Retail ExperienceSearch Query Analysis to Increase eCommerce Website Conversions
- Content Marketing
Technology & Data
Social Startups: Bizible Connects All the Dots from Marketing Contributions to RevenueCreating the Perfect Profile for Your Social Media Marketing EffortUsing GPS and Localization for Social AnalyticsAnalytics and Prospect Intel: Discovering Your Ideal Prospect
- Big Data
- Tech & Innovation
3 Security Risks You’re Taking Every Day While Using Social MediaShould the President Have the Power to "Pull the Plug" on the Internet?How Safe is Your WordPress Website From Hackers and Other Malicious Attacks?
- Software & Tools
- Small Business
- Social Organization
Celebrating the Grand Re-Launch of Social Media Today! SBH Podcast Episode 8Why Should You Care If Your Employees Are Thought Leaders?Beyond Engagement: The Art of Managing Social-Media Risk in Employee Advocacy
Why All-in-One Social Media Management Systems Don't Cut It for Social Customer ServiceWhat You Should Know About Customer, Digital, and Contextual ExperienceSurging into Q3: How to Make It Better Than Q2Is How You Serve Your Customers Costing You Business?
Join us September 15th in Atlanta for The Employee Advocacy Summit and learn how to unleash the power of your employees.
Post your event here and we'll share it with our community. If one of our members is featured, we'll promote as well on their profile.
- Marketplace & Webinars
The SMT Marketplace
Your resource for exclusive content and insights from Social Media Today, and opportunities to reach our community of professionals.
The Social Business Book Club brings you books, discussions, and insights from today's to business thought leaders.
Join interactive talks and and panel discussions with leading thinkers and practitioners on social media and networked business, or browse the catalogue of recorded sessions - all completely free.
Reach Social Media Today's community of marketing and communications professionals in an editor-approved context with a native advertising package.
Will Facebook's Paid Messaging Service Be the End of Networking with LinkedIn?
Posted on January 17th 2013
While eyes turn once again to Facebook and its recent unveiling of a new ‘Graph Search Function,’ there is another story brewing in one of their other, newly revealed features – paid messaging. Essentially, you pay Facebook a dollar and, in return, they allow you to send a message directly to the inbox of someone outside of your network of friends. If you use LinkedIn with any regularity, this pricing model might sound very familiar – I know I immediately thought of their service InMail.
InMail essentially lets you send a message to anyone that uses LinkedIn. However, it requires that you have a Premium account - at its cheapest an upgrade will cost $7.95/month. LinkedIn also limits the amount of messages you can send a month for “free,” depending on the plan you sign up for. However, LinkedIn also guarantees a response and credits your account if you do not receive one.
Will this new messaging feature allow Facebook to challenge LinkedIn’s domination in the field of professional networking? The separation of networks is certainly understandable – the last thing you want your future boss to see is a photo album of your recent booze-filled trip to Cancun. Users are increasingly cleaning up their profiles and turning them into a virtual résumé out of a fear, or perhaps hope, that interested employers will stumble upon the little virtual imprint of themselves and like what they see. Facebook is also “stickier” than LinkedIn, with users spending an average of six hours a month on the site in comparison to seventeen minutes on LinkedIn.
We like “all-you-can-eat” buffet-style social media sites, and Facebook offers a lot of features in a fairly intuitive package. An HR executive can run a quick search for a prospective new hire while waiting for their mom to play a word in Scrabble, versus having to click over to LinkedIn, sign in, and look for what is essentially a digital résumé, likely identical to the one the candidate handed in already. People may not like the fact that Facebook is slowly turning into a tool for professional networking, but it is and there is little that can be done to stop it.
This new one-dollar messaging feature will only aid Facebook’s encroachment into LinkedIn’s territory. Rather than having to pay eight dollars a month to message a set amount of people outside of your network, all you have to do is pay a dollar and the man or woman looking to fill a position in your dream job will have a message sitting in their inbox, and a notification alerting them to this fact above their Facebook feed. Though Facebook does not offer the same guarantees that LinkedIn does, users will reportedly be able to continue to send messages for free, provided the recipient doesn’t label the sender as a spammer. The messaging feature is cheaper, has a one-time-cost per recipient and, thanks to the fact that so many people spend a lot of time on Facebook; chances are good that the recipient will see the message.
This feature is still in beta, and Facebook may decide to charge more than a dollar, or to allow users to set how much they want to charge to allow a stranger to send them a message later on. If either of those things happens then we are all analyzing and pontificating for nothing – Facebook will continue to slowly envelop LinkedIn’s market but there will still be a good reason to pay for a premium account on LinkedIn, especially if you are looking for a job.
But if the price remains a dollar? Being able to have a direct conversation with the person directly in charge of hiring for a position you want is extremely tantalizing. And, if you are going to use the Facebook messaging feature for that, you will want to clean up your profile – maybe remove those John Mayer lyrics from your quotations section. As time goes on and people understand how useful of a feature paid messaging can be, Facebook may pass LinkedIn as the go-to professional networking site.
I doubt that will mean the end for LinkedIn, but it will certainly hurt their bottom line.