Welcome to Face … Bank ?
In yesterday’s much anticipated f8 event, Mark Zuckerberg announced several new launches including Timeline, further increasing the switching cost of leaving Facebook, and Opengraph, to share EVERYTHING that you do and in the process disclosing some very interesting patterns. But unlike industry experts expected, Facebook did not announce anything related to Facebook Credits, its virtual currency.
This came as a surprise given eMarketer’s recent estimate of revenues from Facebook Credits. As reported by Adage, it estimates that Facebook will pocket 470 USD million this year alone, up from 140 USD million in 2010, a whopping 338% increase. What more, it’s growing at a much faster rate than Advertising revenues, raking in a 30% commission of all Facebook transactions.
You’ve also heard about the recent launch of Bobber Interactive’s Goal Card which allows Facebook users to “turn daily spending and savings into a highly interactive experience that earns you cash back rewards” complete with games, animated pictures and a nice integration to social media. As allthingsd reported, this is basically a bank, but not your traditional brick and mortar bank, nor your typical online bank. No, this is an application that encourages financial responsibility and engagement with your community while having fun.
Given Facebook’s position in social media, these small steps towards providing financial services could change Facebook as we know it, and cause serious challenge to some of the more traditional actors in the Financial Services. You can’t help but think that yesterday’s announcements represent step changes within an overall strategy to keep turnover at a bare minimum, and facilitate future adoption of services such as financial services.
Until the next Keynote, check out this short film the Future of Facebook page on the virtual currency of Facebook (skip to 2:55 if you don’t have time)
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