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Friday, January 18, 2013

Moving Beyond the Like

How many times are we going to read similar headlines? Social doesn't work....Facebook doesn't work....Twitter doesn't work. Blah blah blah blah....

I am so tired of reading over and over again how there's no ROI from investing in Facebook. There's plenty, if you know what you are doing and the simple fact of the matter is, most don't. In the 2012 Facebook Ad Report, conducted by Social Fresh with help from – Buddy MediaConvince & ConvertLikeable MediaWebtrends, and BlitzLocal  - we get some insight into what marketers are actually doing within Facebook. And the answer is not a whole lot...More than half of all respondents said they used between 2 & 5 total segments for audience targeting. This is shocking - given all of that data and targeting options provided by Facebook and this data is coming from technology companies that can help marketers manage 1,000's of audience segments.  It's pretty clear that marketers need help with their audience targeting strategy to at least make Facebook Ads a viable source for ROI. Then there's EdgeRank, posting content it worth it? How much should we invest? And on and on and on. If marketers are investing so little effort with their media dollars then can we really expect them to invest what's needed to make a Page work? Facebook Ads as well as managing Facebook Pages can all be done in a way that helps marketers achieve their goals but let's for a second move beyond that. Let's get into where Facebook as well as other social channels can really accelerate your growth.

Social Design.

"Social Design is a way of thinking about product design that puts social experiences at the core. Create these social experiences with the features available on Facebook Platform."

(Taken from the Facebook Developers site:

Brands and marketers that understand this concept have moved beyond the  "Like" and have invested in "authentications". This is how you tap into the power of the Open Graph.  All one needs to do is go take a look at Facebook's Developers site to and view the Open Graph Case Studies to see what kind of results this integration can yield. Here's a few charts that will help visualize what tapping into the Open Graph can mean:


It's pretty clear from the charts above that if you can think about how Social Design can fit 
into your business/product - you can leverage the power of Facebook's Open Graph to dramatically accelerate your growth. What could you do if you knew your customers:
- Friends
- Relationship Status
- Favorite Movies, Teams, Celebrities
- Friends Birthday's
- Check-in's

This list goes on and on...You are only limited by your own creativity. By getting users to authenticate with your App you are creating a value exchange - the customer is giving you access to their data in exchange for you providing them a unique and positive experience. In world where data is considered the new "oil" - it's surprising to me how few people are trying to actively take advantage of what Facebook can provide. And it's certainly not a shock that those companies that do - are building incredible businesses.

The social naysayers will continue hammer away at Facebook, Twitter etc...singing the same song they've been signing all this time. Meanwhile in the background, companies that are social by design from inception, will continue to innovate and disrupt. 

Game on.