We sent two people to f8 and here’s our analysis.
App developer or business owner, the way to social ROI requires connection to a sale somewhere down the line. And today, Facebook’s slew of announcements make clear their method to connect audience with monetization — more specifically via Build, Grow, and Monetize.
Let break these down:
Triggered mobile actions
We all know the Facebook mobile app install ads work well. But now you can send newsfeed messages to your users if they completed an action, are dormant, or need nurturing. So if you’re Rosetta Stone, you might want to send a reminder to people who haven’t completed their lesson, congratulate someone for passing Level 3 in a quiz, or anything you might say in a triggered email. Facebook is allowing us to build in messaging logic from our apps or external events so that we can reach people in the News Feed.
Does this compete against Infusionsoft or Marketo?
Not really. You’d still use Infusionsoft or Marketo as your engine to store and configure all your business logic. What it does mean is that Infusionsoft and Marketo have to build integrations with Facebook to be able to automatically trigger messages into Facebook, in the same way they deliver email through a sequence. The sequences are the same– we just need wider distribution into Facebook.
Facebook is now a retention platform
10 years ago, when Facebook was born, the focus was audience growth. Now apps are the new email. Is email dead? That’s up for debate, but certainly using mobile apps as a retention platform is far more elegant. The changes to the Facebook login (connect with Facebook) and Graph API v 2.0 pave the way for cross-app sharing, stronger user privacy, and more traffic on the canvas. Facebook is suing apps that scrape userids, not allowing apps to share userids lists indiscriminately, not automatically sharing friend lists, and tightening other permissions.
Facebook’s Audience Network
It’s AdSense for Facebook, though they were trying hard not to mention Google by name. And it’s primarily mobile using placements designed for mobile — banner, interstitial or native ad. Mobile presents a different set of challenges than desktop, so the new mobile like button, mobile traffic options, custom audiences, and other tidbits allow us to run super-targeted ads on mobile apps.
What this means for marketers, in plain English
Think of apps as email messaging for mobile.
Your content and business logic are what’s important, not the technology. The platform changes are about content distribution and growth.
So you’ll need to get all your business logic into your marketing automation system (Marketo for big companies and Infusionsoft for small biz), who will feed these platforms.
Our buddy Louis Abramowski, also at f8, has this to say, which I agree with:
App developers have been begging loudly for an API for Siri since it launched. Parse’s Applinks is a step in that direction. It allows one app to open another app (in a specified view) and is really phenomenal and long overdue.
And now, mobile Like Button allows a like button to appear in mobile apps. Make no mistake, this will be abused horribly by a bunch of bad people. There will be a window where you can use it very productively and ethically before the abuse runs rampant.
Get on the gravy train for both of these STAT. Remember, early adopters of anything Facebook launches are almost without exception rewarded handsomely.