Facebook and Twitter users are bombarding their friends on the social networking sites with advertisements to earn extra cash from businesses hoping to boost sales.
According to News.com.au, more than 500 Australian companies, including Reader’s Digest, Perfume Connection, Starshots and Bevilles Jewellers, have signed up to social media marketing website socialloot.com to advertise deals, products and services.
A user can log on to the website, select the firm they wish to promote, post information about them on their Facebook or Twitter account and get paid each time a friend clicks on the link.
How much each user, or “socialite”, earns depends on the company, number of friends and followers they have, and their online influence. For example, if a user has 200 friends, an average influence rating, and a company is offering 20c per click, and the user earns $2 for a post if 10 friends click on it.
“The moment you commercialise Facebook, you shift the nature of your online relationships,” said senior lecturer Paul Harrison.