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Are websites dead?

Filed under: Blogs,Social Media,Thoughts — Andy @ 1:38 am

May 18, 2011

Watch the 10 o’clock news on ITV. Specifically, watch the adverts. Then have a look at the bottom of the screen in the final frames. Where once you’d see a web address you pretty much always see a Facebook URL instead.

The initial conclusion you might jump to would be that websites are obsolete and the big brands are now just relying on Facebook. It’s true that your average non-geek internet user could happily have all their online communications, web searching, video viewing, gaming, news etc. needs serviced without moving away from Facebook, with their laptop next to them on the sofa whilst watching telly. Do some people just think Facebook IS the internet? It’s certainly less complicated – a single login (not even that if you set your browser to remember the passwords) and it’s all there. More importantly, is that what Lynx, Carlsberg, Ford, Pepsi et al think that you think.

I actually did what I was supposed to do (for once) and followed the herd to Facebook. I chose Lynx as a example (facebook.com/lynxeffectuk). Instead of seeing the brand’s website duplicated on Facebook, the landing page is dedicated to the campaign that the TV ad is part of. 236,000 likes. The updates from this are fed back into the “proper” website as well as a Twitter and YouTube Feed…and everything, of course, is “liked” and shared by those 236,000 Facebook users.

Facebook hasn’t replaced the website, it’s just another way into people’s heads. By using a familiar environment and changing your message accordingly you can get a more subtle, finely tuned message to a set of customers than a one-size-fits-all website. Facebook allows a different kind of interaction with an audience, more ways to discuss and share things and it happens pretty much instantly. If you do it right your target customers are not only potential buyers but a potential (and free) marketing team who will do your work for you.

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