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January 11, 2008 / compassioninpolitics

will facebook fatigue set in in 2008?

Business Week has ten big predictions for 2008 and facebook fatigue is one of them:

Social network fatigue will set in as people tire of getting yet another invitation from so-called friends to join yet another social network. And, in the wake of Facebook’s fumbled social ads initiative, it will become even more apparent there’s no obvious way to pitch products on these sites without turning off members. Social features will wend their way into all kinds of Web services, from search to news, but the gold rush in social networks themselves will begin to wane.

(h/t Steve Rubel)

I don’t entirely agree. I believe that businesses will be able to find ways to leverage Facebook and other social networks for business. To suggest that because the first 30-60 days of creating cash payouts hasn’t been successful hardly means that the smartest people on the planet (remember these kids went to schools like Stanford and Harvard) can’t find a way to make money in the near future. Current problems are hardly predictive and these types of problems were probably encountered at the early days of blogging, podcasting, and other forms of media. Also, these assertions assume only an advertising and click-thru model of return on invesment, not a more comprehensive brand model. Ulimately, Business Week falsely assumes that all value and marketing for Facebook and enterprise (online and off) has to take place through a pay per click model. Dubious claims at best.

Business Week’s suggestion is a cautionary tale for those who are making inflated valuations of Facebook and for those looking to make a mindless gold rush on social networking properties. Alternatively, social networks like Facebook, Linked In, and MySpace are here to stay and will only experience growth as they serve to entertain and create online apps for utility and community. Further, applications are proving somewhat fruitful for gathering groups and communities. Finally, to the extent that Facebook can actively connect people to other web outlets, it still serves as a possible part of brand strategy.

Thoughts? Do you have Facebook fatigue? Will businesses get it? How about individuals?

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2 Comments

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  1. Christian / Jan 11 2008 11:26 pm

    I think they are right, to a certain degree. Unless you use the various platforms to push content through, a person could get really bogged down trying to manage 10 different communities of friends, messages and whatever else stacks up for the user to have to manage when they log in to the respective platforms.

  2. Charles Frith / Jan 12 2008 12:00 pm

    No facebook fatigue for me. Although I do prefer to use it as an address book sort of.

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