Facebook Mentions app taps celebrities to boost user engagement

Summary:Facebook is putting public figures in a new spotlight through a new app developed by the same team responsible for Paper and Slingshot.

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Facebook has rolled out another standalone mobile app, and this time it isn't about just isolating a feature but also separating the riff raff from those in the spotlight.

That demographic would be verified public figures, who directly or indirectly drive some of Facebook's revenue stream by engaging the social network's user base on a daily basis.

From the same department responsible for Paper and Slingshot , the Facebook Creative Labs team has unveiled Mentions.

Mentions is designed to be used by the  likes of famous athletes, musicians, actors and then some for both communicating with followers but also to get a better understanding of how they are perceived on the world's largest social network.

Although it looks like another version of the News Feed (or even a simpler version of Paper) displaying status updates and shared updates, there is more opportunity for fostering engagement with Mentions than from the standard Facebook app.

For example, public figures can set up live Q&A sessions via Mentions, which sounds much simpler for the more than 1.28 billion users to communicate live with these celebrities than trying to follow along to a hashtag on Twitter.

Mentions is launching initially for verified public accounts in the United States, with more countries and other proflies to be added in the coming months. Public figures can download the iPhone app to request access.

Image via Facebook

Topics: Mobility, Apps, Social Enterprise, Tech Industry, Web development

About

Rachel King is a staff writer for CBS Interactive based in San Francisco, covering business and enterprise technology for ZDNet, CNET and SmartPlanet. She has previously worked for The Business Insider, FastCompany.com, CNN's San Francisco bureau and the U.S. Department of State. Rachel has also written for MainStreet.com, Irish Americ... Full Bio

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