Looks like Facebook is up and ready to fight. If there is a new toy in town, Facebook must have it. That’s what happened with Trends on Twitter. Although Twitter first introduced the Trends feature in the summer of 2008, Facebook took a while and got one, too. No surprise here, it’s called Trending.
According to Piper Jaffray’s semi-annual teen market research report “More than half of teens indicate that social media impacts their purchases with Twitter being the most important, eclipsing [intlink id=”656″ type=”post”]Facebook[/intlink], followed closely by Instagram. But the popularity of Facebook is waning among teens with 23% citing it as the most important, down from 33% six months ago and 42% a year ago.”
Although Facebook is losing them, as Zuckerberg said in September, “coolness is done for us”, Facebook is keeping them close through Instagram. Instagram is cool these days, but as Facebook once was, probably teenagers will lose the interest, as something coolest may come their path. Not sure if introducing Trending is a way of giving them something cool, so Facebook can gather back what they have lost or is an attempt in keeping the pace with all this mobile changes.
That’s a new movement and is towards mobile and as long as a social network, application or anything else has to do with mobile, it might be favorite among teenagers. As Tom Smith, CEO of GlobalWebIndex, a syndicated study on digital consumers in 32 markets said “There is a very clear story with the big winners being closed messaging and video-and-photo sharing apps. There is a clear, definitive shift to mobile in general, underlined by a large rise in Facebook’s mobile app, [up 69%], so the composition of Facebook is changing.”
The teen trend towards mobile chat apps should have less of an impact on Twitter, Smith added, because Twitter plays a greater role in accessing real-time news, interacting with TV or following celebrities.
Not a surprise that teenagers don’t care much if their mom, dad or their aunt is “feeling sad” on Facebook, but more likely they want to keep up with a particular subject, about their friends and what they like.
“Trending shows you the popular topics and hashtags that are being talked about on Facebook. You’ll see stories from people and Pages who’ve shared them with you or have shared them as Public. From the right side of your homepage, click a topic that’s trending to see what people are saying about it.”Trending is becoming available on the Web in the U.S., UK, Canada, India and Australia. The social networking giant plans to continue to test it on mobile.
I cannot wonder how long it will take Facebook to introduce promoted trends or sponsored Trends, as from April Sponsored Stories will become history.
If Facebook users find the Trending section useful, it will encourage public sharing and most importantly — make Facebook known as a news source for current events.