Facebook – The World’s New Business Hub

Just how much time do you think an average teenager would spend on Facebook? An hour or so a day maybe? Or make that two hours? Well, you better think again!

A recent report from McAfee revealed that Indian teens spend a massive 86% of their time daily on Facebook followed by 54% on Twitter. Yes folks, gone are the days when teens spent their time on playgrounds or even playing videogames! As of now, Social media is the name of the game.

It comes as no surprise that every brand on the face of the earth would want to publicize their brands of the social media majors. With the brand recall that can be generated, it has become a platform that cannot be ignored. Infact, gone are the days when traditional media like TV/Print would be used to launch a product, quite recently a car manufacturer launched their hatchback using Facebook. Hmmm… Will it make the right impact? Quite obviously!

The report from McAfee also showed that 97% of teens have access to social network, while there is a growing digital divide between teens and their parents.

‘This divide is attributed to the fact that Indian teens are growing up as digital natives, with increasingly active online lives but lack of parental assistance’ – Survey

One of the main attributes for this has to be the link of applications on a smartphone. Yes yes, your reflex question might be – ‘Which 13-year-old uses a smartphone?’ – The answer – Almost half of them. The survey showed that nearly 45% of teens use a smartphone that has Facebook has an application & teens open their Facebook account at an average age of 13.

Between the fine print, this survey represents Facebook as a trusted brand amongst our teens. 89% teens believe social network is safe whereas parents (quite obviously) are less believing at 71%!

With such percentages, would you really not want to invest in probably the strongest marketing tool ever?!

Facebook – The New Media Time Machine

There has always been a time in everyone’s life which makes you think, ‘If only time machines were invented’.  The moment when your costly phone fell down, shattering to pieces or when you accidently sent an unwanted message to your teacher.  Between these moments you simply stand by wishing there was some way to turn time around. The situation is more pronounced in the world of media and communication where precision means business.  A simple misprint or Typo in your daily newspaper can turn Obama into Osama! Printing an apology or retraction in situations as these is inevitable. Even in the world of digital media such situations were considered to be very grave. A wrong news flash or e-mailer is considered detrimental for the rapport of the organization.

With Facebook slowly turning out to be an important factor in the world of media, commanding a reach which surpasses that of any other medium the risk of damage by any error would be huge. However thanks to its features of editing and scheduling posts, the risk has been minimized to a great extent.  Facebook can also be named as the new media time machine. Although organizations still need to be careful about what they share or update, the risk of mistake going viral is greatly diminished by its editing features. Facebook allows users to edit posts they have already made thus enabling them to correct errors. Any mistake corrected within few minutes of being posted is less likely to be viewed by a lot of people. In addition to this, the time on the comment is changed to correspond to most recent edit. However a friend or fan that originally received a notification about the post will not receive another notification about the edit.

Another unique feature of Facebook which has helped users master time is ‘Scheduling’. This allows users to schedule posts at a later date and time. Now you don’t need to log in from your vacation or during weekend to post a news or update. Just schedule all your posts in advance and forget about it. It also allows users to backdate a post.

Facebook is an important platform for brand management for companies. It gives them access to large number of viewers and great flexibility in terms of reach and audience. So it can prove detrimental for image of the brand if mistakes and errors are not taken care of before they go viral. These features of Facebook provide them breathing space to a certain extent giving them a certain level of control over actions of users.

With the world of social media becoming more complicated, what features are in store for us and how these changes are going to affect and revolutionize communication is yet to be speculated.

Big ‘B’ollywood in Facebook

Almost everybody you know is on Facebook. From your maternal uncle to your milkman. They are all hooked on to it.

But there is one section of the Indian market that has somehow managed to stray away from Facebook – Bollywood. Sure you will find tonnes of public figure pages, but none of them are really original. Believe me, you’ll take quite a lot of time to count the number of official pages Katrina Kaif has! And you can’t really blame them. With the amount of lewd comments a Sunny Leone photograph gets nowadays, they would better stray away!

But quite obviously, the temptation is too much. As we noticed this week, the Shehenshah of Bollywood, Amitabh Bachchan decided to step into the fray. And quite like his stardom, his popularity is unmatched… a whopping 8 lakh fans in less than 30 minutes. A check right now showed 1.2 million fans with 204,335 talking about him… you need to gasp with that statistics for a page that is just a day old.

The page is adding at least 25,000 fans every hour since morning with no signs of slowing down. The team behind the page is updating the content frequently with his images, quotes etc.

All the 69-year-old megastar had to do was to provide information on his latest movies, a couple of pictures and voila…he is already a big success on this social media major! To give Big B credit, he isn’t new to socializing with his fans now is he? He has his own blog & constantly tweets on the latest happenings.

There isn’t a better way for the superstar to stamp his authority really. If you look at it, there is just another Bollywood star that has similar fan following. Who else? King Khan. He handles his official page with 2,848,864 followers and presently has 79,155 people talking about him. Ofcourse, this number is over a period of a year or so and frankly isn’t a match to what Big B will have in a year.

We have all seen the publicity stunts made by media houses to promote movies. Trailers, sneak peaks, contests, the list is endless. Production houses are keeping upto 10% of their marketing spends firmly for the online space. Surely an official superstar page can reap its benefits without spending anything.

If you think about it, there is no limit to the amount of activity that Big B can generate from this account. It’s possibly the easiest (&let’s not forget, free) way to promote any activity of his – from an advert commercial to a movie. And quite obviously, it might have been a massive pro to join the social networking major, especially with Kaun Banega Crorepati season 6 just around the corner. Over the years, the popularity of the show has gone down quite noticeably; might this be a smart revival in the happening? Only time will tell!

Now that this is a start for Bollywood on Facebook, who else will join the league? We’ll have to wait and watch!

Announce your Pregnancy via Facebook

Facebook has evolved a lot ever since it came into existence. It continuously changes over time, trying to keep the users’ interest intact. It has always made sure that people do not get saturated or bored with what is there.

Life on Facebook, has become life on the whole! It helps people share things with each other – be it as simple as what you did during the weekend, what you had for breakfast in the morning or news such as getting a huge appraisal at work! And ofcourse, you can add life to the news by sharing pictures of all the important events in their life.

Making announcements on Facebook was never difficult. With just a click of a button, you could tell the entire world about the important event that happened in your life. If you started a brand new relationship or just ended one, if you are engaged or married, if you are moving in to a new city – you can let the whole world know!

And now, to add to this, the new announcement you can make is to tell the whole world that you are expecting your little bundle of joy! 🙂

Facebook launches a new Timeline event that lets you share the news of your pregnancy with all your ‘friends’!

You can add information such as the expected due date, and whether it’s a boy or girl. You can add additional info like who the other parent is, location of where the baby will be born and a detailed story as well.

Baby announcements appear in the Celebrations home page sidebar. You can also set a future publishing date if you want to wait a while before making the announcement. Also, you can add a photo to the story. Once published, the story will appear in the news feed immediately for all your friends to see.

This new life event for expecting a baby also opens up new advertising opportunities for brands. Brands now have a new ad targeting option of “expecting parents”.

Brands that have new born related products now have the ability to accurately target expected parents with ads for maternity clothes, parenting classes, strollers, and anything else someone needs to be a mom or dad.

Now with this new feature available on Facebook, you need not have to wait for your baby to be born to announce it to the entire world…you can make this important time of your life, part of your ‘Timeline’ as well! 🙂