Facebook never resorted to the large, interruptive banner advertising model to connect visitors with brands, opting rather to allow brands to engage users organically.
I found myself browsing through the recently launched Facebook Studio, a new site from the social network giant aimed at advertising agencies, and in particular, creatives. The idea is to get agency folks to showcase their best work on the site and have the community decide whether they like it or not. No doubt this will spawn some sort of awards show in the near future, powered by ‘likes.'
Aside from Facebook apps, the site has long been a destination where agencies and clients have needed a presence, but was not a place most saw as an outlet to display their best creative work, as static ad unit buys dominate the media planning.
There is already a groundswell of interest from agencies and the non-advertising community alike, who are “liking” campaigns and posting comments, and in doing so are transforming advertising campaigns into branded content for friends and fans to see.
At the risk of reckless brown-nosing, I believe this is a smart strategic move for Facebook, as it creates a new channel for advertising within the network and cleverly showcases the industry's best work into an always-on platform where advertising content can be discussed and dissected in a much broader and open format, as opposed to the often-anonymous world of advertising blog discussions.
What's more, behind the platform exists an educational component that will go a long way in demonstrating the power of social and the importance of building social campaigns around people and fans.
This “Social by Design” element is at the core of what Facebook can offer brands and should dictate the way agencies approach their Facebook strategies. After all, when a friend likes a brand campaign, doesn't that ad attract your attention, lending the message greater credibility?
It remains to be seen how Facebook will use all this information and data, but I will be watching to see what they come up with next.
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