Saturday, 12 January 2013

The End of Facebook?

Is Mark Zuckerberg a businessman? No, so why is he pretending to be one?

We all know of Facebook's flop at it's IPO. It was well publicised what it meant for the companies' financial state, but what about it's popularity?

Firstly, it is the business side of things that the decision makers of Facebook should be really worrying about. Why is the creator of the company, a stereotypical engineer with little to no social skills (and pretty much no fashion sense) the one to front the companies' business ideas and image? Click here for a great example of Zuckerberg's ''charismatic'' side. Just because he created the codes to make this incredibly addictive social media platform possible, it doesn't mean he should be involved in how the product is sold. 

One of my favourite lines from the movie ''The Social Network''  is when Justin Timberlake's character, Sean Parker says ''You don't even know what the thing is yet''. I would wager that Mark Zuckerberg and his team still don't know that, something that lead to around $25 billion being wiped off their worth at the IPO. Their main problem is they believe advertising is key to their success, a method MySpace and MSN tried to use, and failed. The thing with advertising is, they make money based on how many adverts they can fit on a page, but with the massive switch to mobile social networking they can't put nearly as many adverts on the small screen.
                                          Amusing scene from ''The Social Network''

With rumours of a Facebook mobile phone being released, and inevitability that they will challenge the search engine market, the future or Facebook remains very interesting, if not a bit in doubt.

On the topic of popularity, Facebook reached it's peak 2 or 3 years ago. Among my generation it does not generate the same excitement it once did when we were 17 or 18. We no longer spend hours on it posting each other hilarious but irrelevant links. These days the main reason my friends and I use it is for communication purposes. Why text when you can send a message for free, or create an event and have hundreds of people know within minutes?

What I have noticed in the last few months is the buzz that Facebook once used to instil in people has been replaced by Twitter. Both have massive audiences but it is Twitter's rapid growth which should be worrying the head offices of Facebook. Twitter reached a very important milestone this month which could have a huge impact on how people spend their time in the internet. Are you a Twitter or a Facebook fan? Let me know in the comments section

All these factors indicate to me that Facebook could potentially become the next Bebo, it's a bold statement I know but they will really need to pull it out of the bag to change my mind.

Follow me on @MulryanD

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