Recent research by John Cannarella and Joshua A. Spechler of Princeton’s Department of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering using epidemiological models to understand the rise and fall of online social networks suggests that Facebook may be dead within the next 3 years.
Like MySpace 5 years ago, Facebook, according to the researchers, has similarly peaked and is now beginning to show the onset of an abandonment phase. This is not just of academic interest, they claim, but it also has financial implications for all those who are making Facebook a cornerstone of their social media and marketing strategies.
Skilled marketers would know better than to make a social medium the cornerstone of their strategy. Indeed this is a sharp reminder of the importance of having an integrated marketing communications strategy that embraces most if not all elements of the mix. Facebook (or any other social medium) is merely a “product” or a tool, if you will, and unless you are a very skilful strategist the Product Life Cycle (PLC) will catch your products; sooner or later.
So, is Facebook dead? Not so soon; for skilful brand management could reverse the decline and extend the maturity stage. Or have the FB founders made their money and moved on?