Why You Need Facebook More Than Ever

3.5 Degrees Of Facebook Separation

Why you need Facebook more than everAre you wondering why you need Facebook now more than ever?

The world is more connected on Facebook. Specifically there are 3.5 degrees of Facebook separation.

Forget Kevin Bacon.

Among the 1.59 billion people active globally on Facebook, each member is connected to every other member by an average of 3.5 other people.

3.5 Degrees of Facebook Separation - Chart (2016)

3.5 Degrees of Facebook Separation – Chart (2016)

Tap into 3.5 degrees of Facebook separation to win your customer’s heart and pocketbook.

3 Reasons Why You Need FacebookWhy you need Facebook more than ever

Facebook is a core element of your target audience’s content inner circle.  These 3 facts underscore that Facebook has built a relationship with your target audience across platforms and devices. (BTW, check 2016 Facebook Marketing. It includes important data and analyses.)

1. Facebook is the top mobile app.

Facebook dominated the top 10 US smartphone apps with 126+ million average unique users each month, up 8% from 2014. Facebook Messenger was third with 97+ million average unique users each month, up 31% from 2014. Instagram was eighth with 55 million average unique users each month according to Nielsen. (BTW—here’s a full analysis of 2016 Mobile Marketing.)

Top 2015 Smartphone Apps-Chart-Nielsen

Top 2015 Smartphone Apps-Chart-Nielsen


2. Facebook makes B2B marketers feel at home.

B2B marketers use Facebook for branding and lead generation according to AdRoll.  Facebook advertising investment by type and location-Global Chart-AdRoll-2015

B2B Marketers Love Facebook - Chart -2015

B2B Marketers Love Facebook – Chart -2015


3. Facebook provides quality contextually relevant, cross device advertising.

Using ad retargeting, Facebook improves marketers’ ability to understand purchase intent without scaring members about data privacy. Globally, AdRoll saw a 31% increase in average spend per advertiser (ASPA) on Facebook retargeting.

Cross Device Retargeting On Facebook-Chart-Global research-Adroll

Cross Device Retargeting On Facebook-Chart-Global research-Adroll


As Facebook increases its audience and more importantly a larger share of their attention as measured in time on site, these 3 factors underscore the 3.5 degrees of Facebook separation

Allocate marketing budget to tap into Facebook’s deep knowledge about your target audience to understand them and what they’re doing when they look for your business or see your message. Facebook provides contextual targeting and personalization.

What you can learn from 3.5 degrees of Facebook separation

Facebook has taken a mature strategic approach to their business. Its sole focus is on keeping members on its site longer. In turn, this makes their members more connected to the social media platform and each other.

You can profit from applying these lessons to your business. These 3 strategic Facebook tactics increase revenues.

  1. Pay attention to Facebook members’ wants and needs. Don’t limit yourself to those things that your target audience cares about related to your business. They’re people with lives beyond your product. Examine emerging trends and products and services your audience likes and uses.
  2. Monitor what the major players are doing across the macroeconomic set. Don’t be satisfied with only checking your direct competitors. Pay attention to the big players across the landscape. In my experience most marketers only examine direct competitors. This is myopic.
  3. Keep testing the important stuff. Facebook’s goal is to keep their members on their site as long as possible. They ask, “What can we do to improve the customer experience and keep our members happy.”

How Facebook keeps members happy and on their site:
Why you need Facebook more than ever!

To keep its members happy and on its site longer, Facebook has rolled out 20 different tools and advertising options. All 20 tools have the singular goal of keeping members on Facebook longer and making them feel more connected.

(Note: This list of Facebook tools first appeared in TechCrunch in a gallery by Josh Constine entitled: 20 New Ways Facebook Is Eating the Internet. I have changed the order and added my own commentary.)

Get more and better videos: Improve the video experience without leaving Facebook

  1. Dedicated video feed. Shows you videos you didn’t know you’d like. (Note: This is different from Google’s YouTube.)
  2. Suggested videos. Offers related videos with one swipe.
  3. Picture within picture video. Applies high-end television functionality to the video stream so you don’t get bored. This is particularly important for music videos, a market dominated by YouTube. (For more information on music videos, check this article.)

Feel the need for speed: Reduces the chance you’ll get lost on the web

  1. Instant articles. Pre-caches and displays articles to improve reader experience. This reduces reader abandonment. (By contrast, Twitter suffers because it sends participants to other sites to view its 140 character tweets.)
  2. Facebook Instant Ads. Applies Instant Article caching technology to advertising.
  3. Facebook add-a-link. Provides a keyword search inside status composer. This reduces the risk that you’ll get lost seeking a link on the Internet.
  4. Trending topics section. Is a media competitor.
  5. Messenger GIF Search. Helps find GIFs. It’s another Google competitor.

Shop my way: Welcome Facebook commerce

  1. Facebook Buy Button. Allows you to buy directly from the Newsfeed. It’s contextually relevant to members.
  2. Shopping Feed. Is a dedicated shopping feed tailored to your interests based on your Facebook activity. It uses microdata without being creepy. Attention Amazon and other shopping sites.
  3. Shopping Search Engine. Is a search bar dedicated to products. It displays products based on your Friends and Pages. Members don’t have to ask their social connections for suggestions. Watch out – the inner circle is getting smaller! This is competition for both Google and Amazon.
  4. Shopping Section on Pages. Replaces a website for businesses that can’t build them. Add “Shop” and “Services” sections to mobile pages. Facebook is removing the barrier to entry for small businesses with a low cost mobile-first option. Further, Facebook is a major mobile gateway due to the reach of its app.
  5. For Sale Groups. It’s Craigslist applied to Facebook and improved.

Improve my life: Facebook provides a wide array of services.

  1. Facebook Notes. Welcomes long form content to Facebook. Thank you Medium for paving the way. This is another form of content uberization.
  2. Facebook Live. It’s livestreaming on Facebook. Currently this function is limited to influencers, namely celebrities and journalists. Lessons from Periscope and Meekrat improved for Facebook.
  3. Video calling (Face Time). It’s text combined with Facebook Messenger to keep you on Facebook longer.
  4. Facebook M Assistant. It’s Facebook’s hybrid human/artificial intelligence entry. Voice search is growing. (Check out our 2016 Mobile Marketing Trends.) It’s not just Apple’s Siri, Google’s Cortana and Amazon’s Alexa (aka Echo).
  5. Messenger Payments. Pays your friends from inside Facebook Messenger using your credit card details. Facebook is looking for a way to enter the mobile payments market that’s still in its nascent phase and doesn’t require that you be a bank. This provides a huge gateway for more data on its members in terms of purchase history.
  6. On This Day. Facebook provides memories based on your history.
  7. Facebook Doodle. Draws on your Facebook photos. Facebook is copying Snapchat’s best features. If you can’t buy them, learn what works best from them.

From a marketing perspective, these 20 Facebook tools target 3 major competitors: Google (including YouTube), Amazon and Apple. They tap into the breadth of major trends related to member needs, whether on social media or elsewhere.

The bottom line is that Facebook is making the world smaller and more connected in ways that the average member doesn’t think about as he or she walks through life talking to their friends on FaceTime or watching their stream. This is why you need Facebook more than ever.

As a marketer, the 3.5 degrees of Facebook separation translate into a lot of information about your target customer and her influencers.

To tap into this information, you need advertising budget and resources specifically allocated to Facebook.

Do you think that the 3.5 degrees of Facebook separation applies to you? How have you tapped into Facebook’s microdata?

Happy Marketing,
Heidi Cohen

Heidi CohenHeidi Cohen is the President of Riverside Marketing Strategies.
You can find Heidi on , Facebook and .

Creator Economy Expo
May 5th - 7th in Cleveland, Ohio

Join bloggers, podcasters, authors, newsletter writers, speakers, coaches and consultants, freelancers, and YouTubers at THE learning and networking event for content entrepreneurs.

Read our interview with Joe Pulizzi, Content, Inc. – Revised Edition

Photo Credit: https://www.pexels.com/photo/cell-phone-in-hands-6111/

Tags , , . Bookmark the permalink.

One Response to Why You Need Facebook More Than Ever