Every company today is headed for a Brave New World of eCommerce – and that is the world of Social Commerce. Almost a year ago, July 23rd 2008, Mark Zuckerberg launched Facebook Connect, which gives any website the power of a social network like Facebook right there on its own website.
So what you say?
Facebook Connect provides 4 very important features:
1) Trusted Authentication – meaning it uses your Facebook account to authenticate your profile
2) Real Identity – meaning it taps into your real identity information from anywhere on the web
3) Access to your Friends – meaning it allows you to stay connected to your friends anywhere Facebook Connect is offered
4) Dynamic Privacy – meaning your privacy settings travel with you to external sites using Facebook connect
What this all means is that as eCommerce sites start to implement Facebook Connect and some already are – you will be able to access your profile and create conversations with your friends around an individual purchase!
Example – Lets say you would like to buy the new iPhone 3Gs – you look the Apple Store and see they have implemented Facebook Connect (again this is just an example). You see several of your friends are online and open up a chat with your buddy Jim who always has the newest Apple device and ask him if the new 3Gs is for you. He unequivocally says yes and you decide to make the purchase.
This scenario illustrated the power of a new era of what we will call Advocacy Based Marketing (ABM). If a brand can see and understand that you are a strong positive supporter of the brand and that you are making referrals about the product – they should be reaching out and engaging with you (Jim in the above example). Perhaps they will even offer you and your followers/friends (Twitter/Facebook) a special discount or a peak at the next version before the launch to get the viral buzz going.
All of this will lead to a new era of digital commerce in the next 24 months – Are you ready?