Facebook might be on a roll when it comes to success as a social network, but it’s beginning to look like Zuckerberg’s brainchild might just be on the verge of missing the next big wave – mobile. No, I’m not talking about the presence on mobile space; I’m talking about the approach. And if the recent trends are anything to go by, the Facebook does seem to be living under a rock.
Now before we get sentimental on that one, let’s consider some ground realities:
- Apps that just don’t work: Facebook’s mobile apps are a stark contrast to the great job the development team seems to have done for the Web version. While the iOS Facebook app is currently rated two out of five starts, its Android counterpart is at three out of five! All this when the whole world knows that soon iOS and Android will gobble up just about everything else.
- No growth in mobile revenue: After its aggressive expansion of ad network on the Web, Facebook would have loved to conquer mobile, except that it can make neither head nor tail of it. Does that mean mobile is elusive for advertising? Not at all, if you look at the strong results Twitter is getting. If Facebook wants to succeed here, it needs to stop its giant machinery from spewing out “likes” and posts and stop to think of a strategy.
- Poor beta testing: Or should I say no beta testing?! As I write, Facebook is grappling to contain a major PR disaster as its app seems to be hit by a pernicious bug that is deleting contact emails! Facebook’s official response is that it is “working on the issue”, which means it will be at least a few more days of lost emails and messed up contacts!
Of course Facebook can see all these signs, but the bigger problem is it’s not just willing to invest enough energy in the mobile ecosystem. If they want to approach the fast-growing mobile space with this lack of resourcefulness, I think they have some serious problems coming up!
What do you think Facebook can do right to get its mobile strategy back on track? Tell me in the comments!