Friday, May 11, 2007

Advertise to your friends on Facebook

Mark Zuckerberg, Facebook’s founder

Facebook, the social networking Web site, which has 22 million active users, has announced that it is adding free classified ad listings, putting it into competition with many others.

More than half of it users are in high school or college and it hopes that the new feature will offer yet another reason for users to return to its site regularly. They claim that more than 60 percent of the site’s active users log in each day.
Facebook is calling the new service Marketplace and it will allow users to create classified listings in four categories: housing; jobs; for sale, where users can list things like concert tickets and used bikes; and “other,” a catch-all. Facebook users who create classifieds can choose to show them only to their designated friends on the service, or to anyone in one of their “networks” — their high school, college, company or geographic region. They can choose to make the listings appear on their profile pages, and send them out on “news feeds,” the automatic updates that appear when users log in to the site.

Charlene Li, an analyst at Forrester Research is quoted, “The advantage of having classifieds linked to a social network is that you know something about the seller. You are less likely to buy a lemon from someone who is a friend of yours.”

Although the Facebook Marketplace is free, it could eventually create some revenue for the company.