The Differences between Facebook and a Private Social Network

Estimated Reading Time: 7 minutes

The companies willing to start social communication channels with their clients look for the value of social tools to create commitment or entailment with their brand or product. The diffusion of innovations, promotions, clients attention, etc. through Public Social Networks are good in order to improve the brand image or sales. However, there is an area where public social networks demonstrate their limits: the creation of a community around a related area of interest with their company.

We often hear that Private Social Networks  are like a ‘tailored Facebook’. But Private Social Networks are much more than that and they add various possibilities to your business.

Besides the issues of security and confidentiality, a private social network can offer a company the necessary features to create a personalized community where its clients, current or potential, can be grouped around a specific topic in which they all share interest.

It is important to know the differences between a public social environment like Facebook, and a space like a Private Social Network. The following table displays the differences between public social networks and private social networks.

Facebook Company Pages Private Social Network
Personalized Design MEDIUM. Depending on Facebook design codes. COMPLETE. It is important to create an exclusive customization using the codes from the company.
Retention Views LOW. In Facebook the users are not only exposed to main content, but also advertising, recommendations, third party sponsored links, etc., that distracts attention and increases indifference. HIGH in the case of an active and vibrant community. The links can direct members to products and services.
Attraction of New Members HIGH. Thanks to publicity and timeline interactions, Facebook allows its pages to go viral. Although, they are always limited to Facebook members. HIGH. A Private Social Network platform must be capable of interacting with main social networks. With Zyncro, for example, you can publish important messages directly to Twitter or Facebook.
Data Confidentiality LOW. Shared information belongs to Facebook. HIGH. Data always belongs to the company, the platform is hosted in a cloud or on site.
Member Information VARIABLE. Depending on the level of privacy.  Sometimes, rather than seeking real interactions, users snoop or browse around. SPECIFIC. The community members can determine their profile and privacy depending on the use they want to give to the private network.
Interactions between members of the community MEDIUM. In general, comments between members are reduced and interactions are closely related to members’ private lives. STRONG. The members are more engaged as they are grouped around specific common interests. The private sphere is not part of the community.
Interactions between members of the company Low participation.  To connect with colleagues on Facebook is perceived as an invasion of privacy. The conversations between members are not usually about company issues. VARIABLE. The company can decide whether or not to include its employees in the conversations and answers with clients.
Privileged access to the community LOW. Any Facebook user can set up a company page. Those groups constructed in Facebook are not appropriate for professional communities. STRONG. The communities are only open to company clients, subscribers, etc.
Loyalty and retention capacity of the public HIGH. A Facebook page is an activation leverage of undeniable communication. VERY HIGH. A private community is high value service offered by a company to its clients that allows interaction with other consumers and members of the company.
Analysis HIGH. Facebook can fully evaluate the impact of each message and the generation of social actions (likes, comments, actions) HIGH. Private Social Networks allow you to know everything about your community: what the most active groups are, who are the ambassadors of your brand, how to increase membership, what is the impact of each piece of news published, etc.

Facebook and Private Social Networks are not in competition. The role of Private Social Networks  makes sense from the point that public networks are inadequate. Together they can form a great team to help you shape your community: Facebook will help you attract your Private Social Network members, a Private social Network will help you develop a close relationship with them.

If after revising this information, you are convinced of the benefits a Private Social Network can have for you clients, we still have more data to show you. And if you are already convinced, try Zyncro now for free or request a demonstration and let us show you everything that you can do with your community.

Matthieu Pinauldt (@mattpinauldt) is the Marketing Manager at Zyncro France. After various experience in big companies and converting into a businessman,  he joined Zyncro’s team in order to help develop Zyncro at an international level.  He has a Master in Innovation Management from the University París Dauphine, ENS Cachan and Mines Paritech. He is an expert in Social Networks and issues related to innovation.