With over 500 million friends connected to Facebook and 350 million active members, you would think they would be happy to keep the status quo.
The numbers are staggering and this is why everyone talking about Facebook.
- People are spending over 700 billion minutes per month on Facebook
- More than 30 billion pieces of content (web links, news stories, blog posts, notes, photo albums, etc.) are shared each month
- The average user is connected to 80 community pages, groups and events
- More than 150 million people engage with Facebook on external websites every month
- Two-thirds of comScore’s U.S. Top 100 websites and half of comScore’s Global Top 100 websites have integrated with Facebook (Data from Brian Solis)
So it would seem odd to roll out changes, with the intention getting users to interact and communicate in a different way.
They didn’t become this colossal marketing phenomenon by resting on their laurels. They have made many strategic changes. Some have been a disaster, most have added to our experience.
With all change, not everybody is going to be happy, as usual we hear the rumblings. This would bring their demise and other silly comments predicting doom and gloom.
So what changes has Facebook made, which is supposed to rock the world? Facebook has made an overhaul to Groups so it’s easier for us to share information privately.
Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg stated in the announcement that groups are going to create a fundamental shift in how people use Facebook.
The New Facebook Groups
So why did Facebook make this radical change? Mark Zuckerberg explains, “You try to make it as easy as possible and give people control. It’s very easy to turn a group off. Also there’s really this self-selection. You’ll interact with groups that have a lot of interaction within them. Whereas a group like that, maybe it’ll grow, but then what. If you have a group for your family, your roommates, your classmates or something that’s actually useful. The product is designed so that the groups you actually use go to the top of the home page. The other ones will just fall away. ”
These inserts are taken from the Facebook.com/blog
Why did Facebook redesign Facebook Groups and add new functionality?
We are continually looking for ways to enhance overall user experience. The new Facebook Groups allows members to selectively share information with a small group of friends. We wanted to make it easy for users to create a shared space where they can quickly post photos, chat with other members who are online, and even keep in touch when they’re not on Facebook through a group email address.
What are the main changes with the new Groups design?
The new Groups product enables members to selectively share information with a small group. Old Groups were built around the same goal of helping people share with a group, but users told us it was harder to use that as a means of sharing personal information with a small group of their friends. The new design offers you a shared space where you can share personal information with a smaller subset of people with whom you interact on a more regular basis, like family, classmates or co-workers.
New Groups are optimized for small groups of people; broader movements around public affiliations and causes are better suited for Facebook Pages.
There are also a number of new features being rolled out as part of the new Groups design, including:
- Group Chat: You can chat with multiple other members of a group in real-time on Facebook Chat.
- Docs: The new design has a shared notepad, which allows you to collectively write and edit notes with a group.
- Mailing list-style notifications: Keep up-to-date with other group members through a variety of notification options, like subscribing to notifications or emails about any posts in the group, or any posts made by their friends.
It probably too early to call, if this will be a hit with Facebook users, but this does create an interesting option you can now create new Group pages to be like a private club page.
Think of the possibilities, because now you can communicate with your group members privately via email, chat and even post documents to the group.
Here’s some of ideas that could have potential for businesses
- Collaborative project tool for sharing document for select customers
- As a cloud intranet for small companies, without the IT resources
- Group chat, could be used for off sites meeting, to engage people
- To promote special offers to key clients
If you can think of other ways businesses will be able to use the Groups as a tool, then share them by commenting below.