It has become increasingly evident that mobile technology is definitely taking the cake when it comes to being in the news for the latest trends and innovations. You have probably also noticed that Facebook is always right up there in trending topics because it seems we just can’t get enough of trying to figure out what they’re up to.
So what’s the next logical step, for both the mobile sector and Facebook? To move Open Graph capabilities to mobile devices. Duh. Facebook is always blazing a new path, so in the wake of mobile advertising, they decided to follow suite with something new.
You may have noticed my slight obsession with following Facebook Open Graph trends. This is no mistake. I think Facebook is making some extremely smart marketing and innovation moves- and this is one of them.
So what is this? Facebook ‘Like’ on my mobile phone or something?
Somewhat. Facebook “like” will be a symptom of having Open Graph capabilities, but it won’t be the end all of what can (and probably will) come. All the social tools that come with Facebook, via Open Graph, will be essentially mirrored in the mobile space.
How important will this be?
This can bring a lot of really interesting features into our lives. Since Facebook essentially knows so much about its millions upon millions of users, we may as well use them to our benefits. With the majority of users using social networks on their mobile phones now, this is a new market to share and spread content and items that we’re interested in.
As you can see from the graph to the right (from Mashable.com) mobile Facebook use has increased by 112% from January 2009 – people are using Facebook more than ever for communicating while out and about. I see this as being a trend that sticks around for a long time- and one that morphs and changes as new technology and capabilities surface. Facebook is in it for the long-haul, and so is Open Graph.
So what the heck kind of benefits can I expect?
So you, the mobile device user (and I know you probably have a smart phone, you can’t fool me) can benefit in an abundance of ways from this. Think about your daily life- you’re walking through town, and you stop into a local café. We’ll call this, “Café Awesome”. You have the MOST delicious cup of coffee (you knew coffee would get included in this article somehow) and sit down for a few minutes.
With the capabilities that Open Graph could provide, you could:
- Find the Facebook fan page, and “Like It”
- From there, it would show up on your news/live feed.
- You could then find the actual website for the café- and “Recommend” it (given the feature is there)
- Your “recommendation” would then show up in your Facebook stream
- You will give “Café Awesome” the ability to update you with their status updates
- You will then be able to also receive location aware updates from said café
What’s even better, is you’ll also be able to see what friends of yours have already liked the place you’re either investigating, trying out, or have already decided to like. The power of this is endless. Recommendations from friends are highly regarded- hence why social media and social interactions on the web can have a great impact on our decisions.
You’re walking into an Apple store, because you’re a total Apple fan boy (girl) like me, and you haven’t gotten a chance to hop online and see what deals might be available. Lucky for you, Apple may be making location-aware updates available- so you can see what deals are going on while you’re actually there.
Why should I, a business owner, care about this ‘Open Graph Facebook’ stuff?
Three words. Social beats anti-social. If you, as a business owner, are able to offers promotions and deals to people who are “liking” and “recommending” your Facebook page, you’ll be engaging your customers in a new and exciting way.
Businesses should get pumped about the mobile Open Graph because:
- The ability to offer special deals to fans will create brand advocates and loyalty
- Loyal customers will recommend the business to their friends
- You don’t want to be an after-thought. Allow customers to be in the moment and recommend you while they’re there
A real example of what could come, please?
A good example of a company that’s using Facebook in an awesome way right now, is Burger Monger. If you “Like” them, you’ll see status updates like this-
Imagine if Burger Monger could take advantage of mobile Open Graph capabilities? They are clearly very understanding of the amazing benefits of social media for business – I can only imagine how quickly they would jump on offering promotions and deals through location aware updates to the user.
They could send out updates over lunch hour, to people in the area that “like” them, to coax them with both promotions, and their tantalizing burgers, to get customers to stop in for some food.
So… what’s the downside?
With every positive thing, there has to be a negative view. I may as well put it out there for you guys now- since you’re probably already thinking about it. Obviously when using Open Graph through your mobile device, you’re allowing Facebook and other websites to access your data, information and possibly location (if you have your geo-location turned on).
I feel like this shouldn’t deter anybody from being super stoked about Open Graph going mobile. We (well most of us) have already accepted the privacy-type issues associated with it online. If we’re truly accepting of innovation, and if we really want to see where this amazing industry can take us, we’ll continue to be excited and follow Facebook and Open Graph more closely.
Embrace it. It’s better to be social- not anti-social.
What other benefits do you see, with the impending premiere of Facebook Open Graph for mobile devices? Will you be excited? Or will you be thinking, “Yeah. Another thing Facebook did. Hooray.”
PS: Since I know you love Facebook so much, you should probably keep up with our fun updates on our BlueGlass fan page :)