Facebook yesterday added shared photo albums that will let multiple people upload pictures to the same location on the social network. Immediately we can think of ways in which this feature will benefit groups of friends and Facebook Events, but if expanded, it could also come in handy for Facebook Groups and Pages.
According to Facebook, hundreds of millions of photos are shared every day on the social network. But up until this point, if people attending the same event wanted to share photos, they’d each have to create a separate album. Depending on each album’s privacy settings, it might be impossible for other attendees to see the pictures.
This new feature allows an album creator to share access to as many as 50 contributors, who can in turn share up to 200 photos each — previously albums were limited to 1,000 total photos. Album creators will have the power to modify or delete photos, but contributors will have editing power over the photos that they upload.
Currently shared photo albums isn’t available for Pages, but that doesn’t mean businesses will miss out. For example, if a brand ambassador hosts a Facebook Event, he or she could create a shared album in which your community or social media managers can be added to. This allows your brand an inside look at what happened during the event through photos you otherwise might have missed.
Additionally, the new shared albums have three available privacy settings: public, friends of contributors, and contributors only. If an album is made public, and through the help of hashtags, this could offer another way to track photos including mentions of your brand. It’s not the most straight forward approach for brands, but if you have the bandwidth it could be worth it.
Obviously, whether you’re a Page or Group, it’d be better if you could create the album yourself and invite contributors. We’ve contacted Facebook to find out if there are any plans to expand the feature in the future. We’ll update this post when we hear back.
In the meantime, if you’re looking to keep track of images that include your brand, we recommend asking your fans to tag their photos with a specific hashtag. This will only work on Facebook if your fans are sharing publicly, otherwise you should use platforms that are a bit more open like Google+, Flickr, or Instagram.
Jennifer Beese: Jennifer Beese has worked as a community manager and social media strategist. When she’s not writing, you can find her studying anatomy and physiology—she literally has a skeleton in her closet—or under the stars with her telescope.