We are the Facebook generation'the ones who obsessively refresh our News Feeds, discreetly thumb through photo albums during morning meetings, plow through group chats, and communicate in likes, comments, shares, and statuses. We're fueled by social, inspired by visual, and entirely transfixed by real-time, real-life, right-now communication. Mark Zuckerberg's recent announcement of Facebook Home'the free app for Android that transforms the mobile experience into an all-encompassing News Feed'has teenagers squealing, social enthusiasts buzzing, and marketing nerds dreaming of the exciting possibilities. Facebook Home isn't a 'Facebook Phone,'? as early buzz had suggested; it's an app that integrates with your current device to make social the key component of your day-to-day activity. So, whether you're reading today's headlines from the New York Times, working out with a Pandora playlist, or responding to work emails, you'll see a constant stream of Facebook chats, statuses, photo albums, birthday messages, and more. What's in it for me? Facebook Home is loaded with exciting social capabilities. Coverfeed'a mobile-friendly, highly visual iteration of the News Feed you know and love'is one click away (seriously, you don't even have to unlock your phone). Coverfeed gives you instant access to status updates, photos, and relevant links'it allows for easy scrolling (or stalking, if that's your thing), and it updates constantly so you're always in the loop. For the social animal, Coverfeed is like your best friend, love-to-hate enemy, and creepy uncle rolled into one: you'll never miss a beat'but you may be a bit too informed'and having instant, 24/7 access to Facebook may be hazardous to your health (and productivity). Another exciting feature of Facebook Home is Chat Heads, a function that allows you to chat with friends from anywhere on your phone. No more clicking on the Facebook Chat app to load recent conversations'now, your coworker may pop up on the side of that Buzzfeed article you're thumbing through, or your mom may check in while you're scrolling through AMP's blog. This may be dangerous'no more hiding in your copy of 50 Shades of Gray on the Kindle app, or taking a break to edit that big presentation for work. You'll constantly be in the social loop. custom essay writing services What's in it for Marketers? Facebook Home is the new baby of the Android world, and marketers are itching to understand what's in it for them. Though there is no ad space on Coverfeed (yet), Zuckerberg is excited about the possibilities as he strives to make Facebook a 'mobile-first company.'? More Data Right now, we can be excited about the access to more data. With Home, Facebook has access to a wealth of information on consumers'GPS tracking, phone usage habits, text information, and more'which should be able to greatly inform mobile marketing strategies. Still in its early stages, mobile marketing has yet to truly benefit from informed, targeted ad placements. Facebook Home should be a game-changer in this arena, and Zuckerberg could champion the effort to bring smart marketing to mobile. More Visibility Facebook Home will also allow brands to increase their social visibility. Home will allow for your brand's message to reach consumers quickly, efficiently, and frequently. Engagement with fans will also be sleeker'Coverfeed places a large emphasis on the visual'so there's an incentive for marketers to develop content that's bright, engaging, and stimulating. More Integration With Home, integration is the name of the game: chats are seamlessly woven into apps, and your home screen is a constant flow of photos, updates, and messages. Bottom line: social comes first'and apps and hardware are secondary' but they all exist harmoniously in a world that's intuitively driven by interaction. Marketers should take heed and join the conversation accordingly. When posting on behalf of your brand, don't be spammy. Start a conversation that deserves a 'like'? or comment'one that creates conversation, not clutter. For brands to thrive in this mobile world, we need to adapt. Android users can start playing with Facebook Home today. For the iPhone devotees, Zuck has said that Home should eventually make its way to Apple territory. Either way, it's an exciting time for mobile marketing. We're on the brink of something big.
'Graph Search'? is the long awaited Facebook search engine that, according to Mark Zuckerberg, will be replacing the old white search box that many of us found no use for aside from finding Facebook friends. The new 'Graph Search'? is now in beta and available to only a few select users. While some see this move as a major upgrade, others see it as Facebook once again pushing privacy boundaries. Zuckerberg coins this new method of search as 'the new pillar of Facebook'? that will most likely change the way we view search in the years to come. Only the test of time will tell us if it can handle itself against the search engine titan that is Google. Facebook is a social data warehouse that's centered on people, photos, places and interests. Now with Graph Search and years of collected data, Facebook will become a multidimensional search engine. We will now be able to ask it complex questions that normally a search engine wouldn't be able to answer like 'Which restaurants do my friends like in Boston," 'Which of my co-workers are New England Patriots fans," or 'Which friends of my friends work in marketing, and graduated from BU.'? Recommendations are from actual people you know rather than strangers like when using Yelp, which has the ability to revolutionize word of mouth advertising. Zuckerberg also mentioned during the announcement that Facebook will be partnering with Bing to offer the best of both web and social search within the Graph Search results. Zuckerberg's new creation is focused on "making new connections" that can introduce you to new friends of friends in a more natural and social way. This breakthrough could only be possible because of their data from over one billion users. With that data, they'll now be able to generate actual answers to queries by using social signals instead of keywords and links, which will have us using Facebook in an entirely different way while possibly changing the direction of search engines entirely. We will have the power and resources to be able to recruit for jobs, find friends to hang out with spontaneously, find new bars and restaurants. It will even help single people find dates. Zuckerberg is furthering the original idea that started Facebook, which is connecting people together by providing an unmatchable product. If it sounds too perfect to be true, it just may be. There is no question that Facebook has a long road ahead to perfecting their new search engine. Keep in mind, what mainly drives their search results are 'shares'? and'?likes'? through users. This is asking every one of your friends and you to be diligently active on Facebook to 'check in'? and 'like'? places, post photos and fill out interests. Out of the hundred, or hundreds, or maybe even thousands of friends, who would you trust to give reliable recommendations? Think about how much thought we actually put into the 'liking'? process. There are times where we all might have just 'liked'? something for the sheer fun of it. Facebook will run into multiple obstacles along the way, but that's the very reason why they are gradually giving access to a limited amount of users, collecting data and tweaking code, before making it public to everyone on Facebook. So is this the start of the battle between Facebook and Google that many of us have been anticipating? Maybe not, Facebook foresees it as an evolution of the way we see search. Zuckerberg might have looked beyond becoming a competitor and begun the development of changing the game completely. Google and Yahoo! are not the only ones that should be raising an eyebrow, but other social sites like LinkedIn, Monster, Yelp and even Match.com need to realize that Facebook will challenge their livelihoods in their industries. If Facebook passes through the kinks and trials they are bound to face in the years to come, they could ultimately change the way we view and see the world as we know it, again.
In the movie 'The Social Network,'? Jesse Eisenberg's portrayal of Mark Zuckerberg led us to believe that since Zuckerberg so desperately wanted to be considered cool himself, that he also wanted Facebook to be cool, so that he could be considered cool by association. For this reason, he was against selling advertising on Facebook, as he thought ads would cheapen the experience and make it uncool for potential users. Seven years and billions of dollars in value later, Facebook is the biggest website on the Internet and it has since allowed sponsored ads. The conspiracy theorist in me believes that Zuckerberg always intended to have ads on the site, but he just wanted to get everyone addicted to Facebook FIRST, and THEN make money off these addicts. You may ask, 'Greg, are you comparing Mark Zuckerberg to a heroin dealer?'? In a way, I AM comparing Mark Zuckerberg to a heroin dealer, only WAY smarter, because Facebook isn't illegal, and it's a universally accepted addiction. Now that sponsored ads have been in our Facebook consciousness without mass Facebook upheaval, we will now see the beginning of sponsored stories. With sponsored stories, businesses can now monetize their Facebook fans. For example, let's make up a fictional store called 'Sneaker Land.'? Aside from having the most original name for a sneaker store in recent memory, Sneaker Land also has a growing Facebook fan base. Occasionally, Sneaker Land posts interesting pieces of content based around the sneakers they sell. This content might deal with subjects such as sports or fashion. If a 'fan'? of Sneaker Land were to 'like'? this content, Sneaker Land could then pay Facebook to feature this information in the 'sponsored'? column for all friends of fans to see. By doing this, Sneaker Land is building awareness to the social networks of their fans, while increasing web traffic, and ultimately increasing their bottom line. Sponsored stories aren't just limited to article related content. 'Check Ins'? have become a popular feature on Facebook as of late. These 'Check Ins'? can now also be sponsored as well. Now if you 'check in'? to Sneaker Land with your friend Joe, all of your friends can now see a Sneaker Land sponsored ad letting them know that you were at Sneaker Land with your friend Joe. The advantage of sponsored ads is that the ad has longer staying power to penetrate the consciousness of your social network, rather than being buried in the list of recent status updates. While this information may seem scary to some people, the idea of sponsored stories doesn't stray far from behaviors that the majority of people already participate in. People are quick to share personal information with their friends, and now this information will just be there longer for people to see. If you don't want this information being used, then don't share it to begin with. The idea of sponsored stories seems like a slam dunk for businesses wanting to reach their target audience, while building their social media presence. In addition, social media posts now routinely rank in organic search results, so it would be an ignorant move for companies to not at least pay attention.