Facebook turns to interactive video to re-engage community

This week has 16 year-old Shannon O’Connor joining the team for work experience, and today she looks at Facebook’s new interactive video features in the quest to be relevant once again. Here are her thoughts.

Facebook recently announced the launch of its new interactive live/on-demand video features in a attempt to engage users and continue increasing annual turnover.

It will allow creators to positively communicate with their viewers through live interaction. Part of the feature will be gamification for Live tool, but in addition there will also be a poll tool for both Live and on demand videos.

In recent weeks Facebook have been facing difficulties; the most notable being the Cambridge Analytica Scandal, with investigations made by the European Parliament back in May 2018. Facebook’s founder and CEO Mark Zuckerberg had been roasted by politicians in which he responded with great passion,“I am determined to keep building tools that bring people together in meaningful new ways while we work to address our safety and security challenges as well.”

The new feature is perhaps an attempt made by Facebook to innovate social networking for its users as way of getting back into the ‘good books’ of those affected. Despite the negative responses Facebook have received in recent months by both politicians and users, it must be commended for its success in being able to sustain great annual revenues from advertisers.

Facebook is the largest social media platform in advertising and marketing with 93% of global marketers utilizing the app in efforts to promote their brand. In Q1 2018, Facebook’s advertising revenue amounted to approximately $11.795 billion comparatively to the other fees amounting to $171 million. Net income stood at $4.988 billion. Most notably, mobile advertising revenue represented approximately 91% of advertising revenue.

Facebook annual revenue growth (Statista)

Facebook Annual Revenue Growth (Statista)

As shown above, the platform has continued to grow from strength to strength financially. However, it could be noted that only 51% of US teens aged 13-17 now use Facebook, with only 10% saying it is their preferred social media platform. Coming from a teenager who also engages with social media on a day to day basis, I believe Facebook has become less influential on younger people. By implementing the tool, Facebook is becoming progressively aware of the threatening position it is stationed at. The feature has perhaps been announced in an attempt to plaster up the visible cracks of lost engagement.

Is Facebook too aspirational in their attempts to continue increased revenue? We’ll have to see how the feature impacts these numbers.

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