Feel free to let down your guard—a post in Facebook’s help center confirms that the messages are part of a recent Call Tracking Study outreach to better understand how many phone calls local businesses receive as a result of their Facebook page.
Obviously, Facebook is serious about wanting participation. They are offering a $500 credit for Facebook advertising if you sign up for the month-long study—not too shabby of an incentive, right? Once you’ve confirmed your participation, you’ll receive a special phone number from Facebook that you’ll need to put on your business page for one month. That way, Facebook will be able to count calls that occur as a result of the page, while also ensuring that the calls reach their recipients.
Here’s a copy of the message, courtesy of All Facebook:
With Facebook spam and hacking so prevalent, it’s no wonder that even a legitimate message like the one above was tagged as possibly suspicious. Yet it’s a smart move on Facebook’s part to stay up-to-date on these issues and let users know of legitimate correspondence—especially when it comes to a potentially valuable offer for small business owners. After all, free advertising is a pretty powerful perk.
In the meantime, we hope that Facebook will publish results of the study. Tying Facebook exposure to phone calls received can provide yet another valuable metric of what Facebook marketing can do for a business or brand. It’s our bet that businesses might not actually receive many calls as a direct result of their Facebook pages, but the proof of that will, of course, be in the pudding.
There’s a lot to be said for a well-designed business brand page on Facebook, and offering relevant information, shopping, great, entertaining, informational or otherwise valuable content on Facebook. Obviously, if you’re a small business that has a brand page but isn’t doing that, you’re probably not getting many calls. And signing up for the promotion will be a great test of that and can perhaps set you on a path to making some modifications that might make a difference.
Bottom line – it’s all about the data. The more data you can collect about the effectiveness of various platforms, the more you validate your digital marketing strategy—and can help sell skeptical parties on your efforts, too. If you’re a small business with a brand page on Facebook and decide to participate in the promotion, we’d love to know about your results after the test period is over.
Image via Stock.Xchng/otjep