Saturday, January 12, 2008

Facebook Saving Face or Egg on the Face

Did I read this right?

In a post on GigaOM written by Stacey Higginbotham about Mark Zuckerburg's appearance on 60 Minutes there's a quote that I had to read a couple of times.
“I mean, there have to be ads either way because we have to make money…We have 400 employees. We have to support all that and make a profit.”
The quote is both short-sighted and immature.

Successful businesses align their solutions with the needs of their customers. Yes, advertisers and agencies (and I work for one) are enticed by the promise of social networks; but if people aren't there in the mood to shop then no amount of advertising is going to work. (ok, you can make a branding argument if you'd like, but the metric that matters at the end is revenue.)

Facebook didn't start as means of facilitating commercial transactions; the switch to another business model will be very difficult and if successful will be for a different audience segment.

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