Facebook unveils a new way to advertise – or does it?

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Marketers around the globe had the opportunity this week to view a live feed of the facebook Marketing Conference (fMC) held in New York City. The seminar had quite a bit of useful information on the new Timeline feature, and perhaps most notably, the change from Facebook ads to Facebook Stories.

Representatives from Facebook explained in detail how the “Stories” feature will allow for businesses and brands to better connect with their audiences – giving them a way to talk with their fans instead of at them.

There was a lot of talk about going “back to the future” of forming connections – becoming a part of the community and concentrating on relationships.

Doesn’t that seem pretty obvious for social media?

After all, hasn’t the whole point of social media always been to be social and connect on a personal level with the audience? To provide a deeper level of customer service, to answer questions, to build relationships?

Facebook’s new “Stories” seem to be stating the obvious. The whole point of advertising on social media is, and has been, to give your audience something to connect with, relate to, and share.

Did we miss something here? It seemed that sitting through the conference was a repeat of social media 101 – and the information was being sold as if it was groundbreaking.

“Lots of ads can add up to noise” and “lots of stories are the basis of our relationships,” as Mike Hoefflinger, Director of Global Business Marketing for Facebook put it. And sure – the new “Stories” feature seems like it will be great, and if done correctly, will be capable of leading to great results.

But we can’t help but feel that we have been mislead in thinking this is revolutionary to how social media advertising works.

If anyone watching this conference didn’t already understand that social media is about connecting and sharing stories with others (whatever that story may be), they have much more to learn than the fMC seminar could have covered.

Need help making social media work for your brand? We can help.

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