Thursday, September 22

Just Be Facebook

I accept change pretty easily, I have to say.  So when social media platforms change their formats, I pretty much roll along with it.  I see others get kind of upset, and just think to myself, "they'll get used to it."

But I have to say that yesterday Facebook threw me for a loop. The "brand" (note I said brand) pretty radically changed how it interfaces with its "friends" and pretty radically changed how we all "manage" our lists.

I don't like it.

Not because I can't accept change, but because I feel like Facebook is trying to be all things to all people.  A little Google+ and a little Twitter and a little a this and a little of that.  Now we can sort and analyze and prioritize and functionalize ... I don't want to do that with Facebook.  As my friend Abbey says, "I don't want Twoogle+!"

I know and appreciate the Facebook brand, and want it to be Facebook.  So many people joined Facebook because of its simplicity.  Facebook's brand is to be user friendly and simple.  Go ahead and improve, but stay to the brand.

Now admitedly, I have not spent a lot of time with it, and maybe (just maybe) I will grow to love it.  But at first glance I just want Facebook to be Facebook.  Stick true to what it is, and give us what we've grown to need (and love) in our lives.

Just be Facebook.  Sure, go ahead and evolve, but don't try to be other brands.  I'm not even sure that Google+ is working yet, so why follow them?  Although I do admire the confidence that came with the press release ... changing the face of social media again.

Nice language, nice try, but just be your brand please.  I'm a big fan.

What's your experience?  Jim.

Jim Joseph
President of Lippe Taylor
Author of The Experience Effect


  1. I did a post yesterday on shortcomings in my Google+ user experience and how Facebook is following right along. I think the bigger experience issue is for Facebook though. Google+ seems to be following a natural migration of features. Facebook seems very willing to apparently go off strategy based on real or perceived pressure from Google. I'm just not sure the biggest group of Facebook users really are screaming for most Google+ features.

  2. By ignoring customers and making changes to the product willy-nilly, Facebook is creating the perception that they are flailing about in an attempt to keep up with others.

    It's almost bizarrely ironic that the company that built the ultimate customer listening platform isn't using it to listen to customers and innovate accordingly.

  3. Thanks for the post... I can SO relate! wonder if they did any consumer research? or if they did, was it as mis-read and flawed as the famous COKE change!?!

  4. I have a feeling you are right ... no research and no listening can lead to big mistakes! Jim.

  5. Companies evolve, makes some tweaks, and then "re-evolve". That is social media where is change instantaneous. I agree with your post, Facebook should just be Facebook. However, the downfall of myspace, friendster, and xanga, made social media companies realize that evolution is needed. Right or wrong.

    Facebook is standing on the train tracks, if they are heading the wrong direction, at least they will see that train coming and do an about "face".

  6. Every great brand has to evolve. You are so very right. We'll get used to the change I am sure! Jim.