Tuesday, March 28

Are you a Facebook or Tiktok ‘team’?

Do you want to sell things on social networks? Facebook lost users for the first time in its history. This must be underlined: Facebook lost half a million users for the first time, according to what was revealed by its subsidiary Meta, yesterday.

This year, the successful company that was born as a social network founded by Mark Zuckerberg will be 18 years old.

It’s in another stage. He no longer rubs shoulders with those small disruptive companies that come to change the world these days, but with giants like Microsoft whose trajectory spans decades. She suffers in this stage of maturity, in the circumstance of becoming “adult”.

To the detriment of the California company, in 2016 a Chinese brand called TikTok emerged, owned by Bytedance, which came to move the stage of a company that bought what was in its way.

If they saw WhatsApp grow on Facebook, they acquired it. When Instagram posed a threat, they still transferred the money necessary for its acquisition.

With TikTok there was no such transaction and that proposal led to the following response from Mark Zuckerberg yesterday, before international shareholders and analysts:

“There are two things I want to mention that are having an impact on our business.

The first is competition, people have a lot of choice on how they want to spend their time, and apps like TikTok are growing very quickly.”

If you recorded a “trend” through choreography, you will understand that you are part of the reason for the change that concerns Zuckerberg.

“And that’s why our focus on Reels is so important in the long term, as is our work to make sure our apps are the best services available for young adults,” the Facebook and Meta founder added yesterday.

The problem is twofold, because that distracts people who might be on their platforms, but at the same time it complicates monetization.

The Facebook “newsfeed” or “timeline” that you consume while moving your thumb up the screen already has ads and other tools that attract patrons who won’t quickly move to video.

The experience of finding yourself in Reels with the promotion of a detergent will surely drive away many users who could migrate to where those inconveniences will avoid them.

Meta has reached the point that companies like Ford have reached in the past. It is a stage that Harvard Business School has studied.

The company that surprised everyone with simple and affordable cars mass-produced in a factory 100 years ago suddenly turned to increasing complexity that included the need to produce everything from pick-ups, to the Falcon that also competed with the Mustang, everything in the spirit of increasing profitability, margins.

Today, Facebook is no longer the party, the collection of photos of friends and family with which it was born, to later include videos of cats, which can be seen by browsing among other images that invite you to watch a live video, while reading news or a meme of a politician appears.

Now Facebook is struggling to have improved pickups under its popular Whatsapp brand or, with Instagram stories, a kind of “Mustang” that is still sexy, but must at the same time take care of its intention to create a “metaverse”, in which people alive when they want to get away from reality, which happens through the camera lenses that he recently created together with Ray Ban from Luxótica. It is not impossible, but juggling is very complicated.

In that Tiktok appeared and people returned to the party, to dance in “trends”. There, the popular comedian Eugenio Derbez already has 17 million followers, almost the same number he got with his old Instagram account, in which he has 17.7 million.

It will be very difficult for the Chinese to reach the size of the Californian. But yesterday, Meta’s share price fell more than 20 percent after the markets closed. Could they get their value back? Perhaps, but the circumstance accentuates Blackrock’s forecast that the moment for great innovations in social networks has passed, they say that now it’s time for the serious, for startups in energy efficiency, for example.