In December last year, Facebook announced a new addition to its 'Collections' saved content option, which enabled users to share their Collections with friends, and invite others to contribute to the listings.
Collections provides a way to gather groups of posts, videos, Marketplace listings or ads, and save them in a separate list. Similar to Pinterest's shared boards, Collections gives users a way to showcase the things that they're interested in, while also, as noted, enabling friends to contribute, which can be helpful for event planning, gift registry listings, travel ideas, etc.
But now Facebook's looking to expand Collections even further, with a new test of an option to share your saved Collections publicly, and enable friends to follow your lists.
As reported by TechCrunch, the new Collections update provides more options to share your Collections lists. In the screenshots above, posted by user @whimchic, you can see the new prompts for users to share their Collections publicly, with a new set of audience options to choose who can see and comment on your Collection.
In the case of collaborative Collections, the capacity to share more broadly could help to make it a more engaging option. But in the case or product listings in Collections, based on Marketplace posts, ads, and in future, products from Facebook shops, it could have an even bigger impact.
As we noted with the addition of shared lists among friends, the option opens up new avenues for influencer collaborations, with the capacity to use Collections to promote specific products or tools. The problem, at that stage, was scalability - as users wereonly able to share their Collections with a small amount of people, it limited its potential usage in this respect.
Now, people who post Collections will be able to share them publicly, which could open up a range of new use cases for promotions, with themed Collection sets available on anybody's profile (once fully rolled out), which could help brands promote their products via influential community members.
In fact, similar Collections are available as part of Facebook's new Shops option, with themed sets of items one of the display types.
Imagine that, but expanded to every user, where each individual Facebook profile can provide a showcase of items that people like.
There's a range of opportunities here. At present, Facebook is only testing the new sharing options with a selected group of users in the US. But it could be worth keeping an eye on, and considering as another product promotion tool.