I’ve been very fascinated with this idea. Now that Facebook is on it’s way towards profitability, it perhaps is not applicable to the social networking giant but there might be something for the new start-ups still trying to figure out their business model.
Plenty of start-ups in the Internet space follow a strategy of building a product, amassing an audience quickly and then trying to figure out how to monetize the audience. Facebook did the same, but it hasn’t and still struggles with winning the in-network advertising conundrum.
It changed its “FAN” to “LIKE” – with the definitive intention of pandering to brands and companies by showing them an increase in enrollment into their fan pages. Facebook also changed the settings on my profile page and now connected each “interest” of mine to a specific fan page. It annoyed me. I had beautifully crafted and super creative interests and activities and now they are all gone because I refused to link them to Pages.
From a brand perspective, these are all excellent changes. Branded content will continue to seep through personal social networks in form of “likes.” My clients are already excited with the possibilities.
But on a personal note, Facebook has become less and less intimate and is losing context for me everyday. I have more people on Limited than I did before and my interactions on Facebook have lessened to wishing happy birthday’s and liking a photograph. Maybe it’s just me but are these changes adding real value to the user to ensure they continue using and trusting Fbook for the long term?
That’s why my $1 business model is so brilliant. If I say so myself.
I’d have MUCH happily paid them a $1/ month subscription fee than be subjected to forced changes. Facebook would have the operating budget they needed to stave off pressure from the industry and buy time to come up with a smarter strategy. It’s a flawed idea, I know but I just shelled out $20/yr for a flavors.me pro account. Facebook offers a much better service and contains my biography of sorts…so paying a subscription fee to Facebook is a no-brainer.
Just my two cents.