By: Noelle Cutler, Leonard & Finco Public Relations

If you’ve never heard of Facebook, you might be living under a rock.

But what about Facebook Business Manager or Workplace by Facebook? Most people aren’t quite so familiar with these. Facebook rolled out these two relatively new platforms in the past couple of years. Business Manager was launched in April 2014, and Workplace was launched last month. The success and endurance of these two platforms haven’t been proven, like they have been for Facebook, so is it worth your time to figure them out? For businesses, the answer to that question depends on the answers to a few other questions:

  1. Are you on Facebook? This might seem like a no-brainer question, but not every business is on Facebook. You probably should be, but that’s a topic for another time. If you’re not on Facebook, don’t worry about Business Manager. Since Business Manager is a way for multiple people to manage your Facebook business page, this won’t really apply to you. Workplace on the other hand, can be used without a business page. It’s basically a way for employees to communicate among themselves in a Facebook-esque platform. Whether your business is on Facebook or not doesn’t impact the possibility of your business’ employees using Workplace.
  2. Do you have multiple Facebook business pages? If you have just one business page and you’re the sole admin, there’s not really a need for Business Manager. But if you have multiple business pages or multiple admins, Business Manager makes it easier to assign varying levels of permission to different people and pages. If you’re working with a third-party agency who has access to your page, it’s an even better idea to use Business Manager for security and privacy reasons. 
  3. Do you want to use Facebook advertising?It’s not impossible to advertise without Business Manager. But it is getting very tricky to advertise with a shared login that you might be using now if you have multiple people/agencies managing the account. Facebook doesn’t really care for those shared logins much anymore. It’s still possible to advertise on Facebook if you’re logged in as a personal admin on the page. Even then, Business Manager is good for managing and assigning permissions to ad accounts in the same way it does for business pages.
  4. Do you and your co-workers need a visual way to communicate online? This is where Workplace might be a solution. Since Workplace is laid out so similarly to Facebook, it may be better at visual collaboration, then say, emailing. You can post pictures of designs, and co-workers can comment on it just as they would on Facebook (minus that lovable but annoying aunt who comments on everything). Now if you’re a law office, you may not need that visual aspect as much. Not to mention if you already have some sort of intranet that your employees use successfully, the price tag of Workplace may not be tempting you to switch over.

Here are two pieces of advice to take away from this: don’t jump on Facebook’s bandwagon every single time because their wagons fail (e.g. Notify, Parse, Facebook Home, Facebook Coupons and others you’ve never heard of). The second piece of advice: with every latest and greatest product or software that comes out, consider your unique business (no one knows you like you). Facebook won’t stop releasing new products any time soon, so do your research and if you think it could really help your business, take the plunge!