Posted May 4, 2012 5:11 pm by with 0 comments

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Facebook is famous for dangling the carrot then pulling it away when you try to grab hold. The newest carrot is the ‘Offers’ program, a self-service option for creating Groupon style deals on your Facebook page. Excellent for the small business owner.

In March, Facebook announced the program with much fanfare, then noted that it was only available to clients who had managed advertising accounts (the big dogs). So, the rest of us waited patiently.

A few hours ago, Facebook added several new posts to their marketing page promoting Offers! Yes, the same program they promoted months ago, but this time it’s open to all — ish.

Offers are available in beta to a limited number of local business Pages. We plan to launch offers more broadly soon. If you’d like to post offers but your Page doesn’t have the option to yet, let the Pages team know.

Again, with the limited beta. I checked the Pages I managed and nada. Check yours. Go to a post blank and look for a yellow box next to the Events option.

If you see the box on your page, go buy a lottery ticket.

Skimming the comments on the post, there’s not a one that says “yeah!” They’re all questions or complaints about the missing tab. So I ask, why does Facebook do this? Why promote a program that few people can access? They have to know that it will cause a storm of angry and confused responses.

I think Facebook’s Offers program is a great idea. With careful use, it could be an excellent tool for small businesses to help them increase sales and awareness. But if everyone’s annoyed before it even starts, what’s the point?

Facebook, you know the rule. You can’t hand out treats to a chosen few. You have enough to share with the whole class.