Few hours ago I read the news, published on June the 23rd, reporting that Netflix CEO joins Facebook Board. I was on the point of writing this post but, after the news, I decided to go for a slightly different subject.
Yesterday evening I downloaded an iPad app named Plizy. I am not going to write about the various features characterizing Plizy; instead, this post focuses mainly on what happens inside the app, once I log-in with my own Facebook account. In order to give you a better description of these dynamics, I am going to use the Benetton Official Facebook Page of which I am fan.
Soon after the Facebook connection, the first log-in process shows me a window with the list of my “liked” Facebook pages. Not all the pages, only the once containing videos. I decided to add some of them that automatically become channels – included the Benetton one, of course.
In a very quick and easy way I have on hand one channel with Benetton Spring/Summer 2011 Collection catwalk and other related videos available on the Benetton Facebook page. This happens without Benetton Marketing knowing that I am enjoying those videos on my iPad.
I have also linked my Twitter account, so I can share the videos and enhancing incrementally the views. The videos which have been uploaded by Benetton on their Facebook Page to be viewed by its actual 490,876 fans now can also be shared among my 459 followers.
Also thanks to data exchange between Facebook and third party apps, I am able to read other people’s comments on the videos and, at the same time, I am also able to like and comment these videos. My actions are pushed in real-time on the video page on Facebook. The like feature, obviously, brings the video on my wall and also on all my friends’ News Feeds.
All these activities and possibilities enhance the videos spillover coefficient into social networks. According to some studies, there is a direct relation between the probability to express the like and the number of people who are part of my social circle that already did it. As stated in a scientific publication [Cha et al., 2009, 18th International World Wide Web Conference]:
Thus, Benetton capitalizes, in this way, direct advantage from videos visualization (uploaded one time) outside Facebook without renouncing to social dynamics and to the propulsive boost from the big blue social network. At the same time, Facebook merges more and more with companies, with marketing strategies, with Benetton Clients’ lives.
And what about sell strategies?
At this point, let’s imagine that the videos in the page come from a big TV provider or producer with the aim to sell TV series and movies via Internet. Let’s imagine that Facebook would give the possibility (via API) to “bring out” movies and series and, allowing the producers to use an embedded subscription system such as the Netflix one. Facebook could obtain what Netflix didn’t achieve until now: adding social relations liquid nitrogen to digital entertainment system.
In such an entertainment environment like this, millions of viewers would enjoy movies and shows in “social” ways. As a result, broadcasters (and the rights owners) would obtain the exact information about audience, their preferences, geographical positions, opinions, sentimental situation, number of friends and the other information we use to collect by using Facebook API and Social Graph. This would make Nielsen and the other traditional viewership measurement tools useless.
In addition, the advertising budgets could be allocated in a different and more efficient way. Broadcasters could distribute TV series, shows and movies directly to Clients. Surely it could be… even if someone might say “not now, but in the future!”.
So, not now for us, because we are waiting and observing. In the meantime… other people are already started shaping the future – as usual!
Italian (original) version of the article. Probably better written.