Should Your Startup Capitalize On The Popularity Of Facebook Paper?

February 10, 2014

9:00 am

Facebook probably wasn’t expecting to celebrate the happiest of 10th birthdays. The social media giant was hit with several pieces of bad news in the run-up to the big day. Market researcher iStrategy Labs calculated that there had been a mass exodus in teenage users — their bread and butter — having lost 3 million in just three years’ time. Then came the threat from other social media platforms like Twitter which, while Facebook was dropping users, managed to double its figures.

However, they have managed to turn over a new page with the launch of their app, Facebook Paper. It was released for U.S. iPhone users on the day before Facebook’s birthday, February 3rd, and it has already been a top seller in the App Store. What’s more: Paper is not only bound to help Facebook escape their bad luck of late, but is just might also help your own brand grow online via Facebook, too. Entrepreneurs with a new or growing business might want to start thinking about how Paper can appeal to them – and how they can appeal to Paper.

So what is it? Well, Facebook Paper is a late attempt to fix the mistakes the company has made in mobile in the past. In the free app, there are over a dozen categories that range from Tech and Sport to LOL and Cute that you can customize depending on your taste. It then pulls stories from both “well-known” and “emerging voices” into these categories. The stories are decided by a team of editors as opposed to an algorithm.

Paper provides a glossy, organized stream of content not only based on what your friends post on their walls (the social networking side of Facebook remains intact – you can still see your friends’ photos, videos, favorite hobbies or contact numbers) but also what organizations post on their walls. It’s all catered to what you want to see when you log in, too.

Facebook Paper is Mark Zuckerberg’s company testing the waters, seeing if this should be the future of the social network’s mobile presence. Based on the success it has had so far, that might just be the case. Those with young brands or businesses should therefore be asking one question: How do you become one of these emerging voices, grabbing the eyeballs of this new market before your competition does?

It’s clear from the fundamental design of Facebook Paper that this app is intended to be a very visual medium. Pictures and videos now appear full-size, and users can explore them by tilting their handset. This makes it important for you to learn as much as you can about using storytelling with images and video in order to promote your brand.

Original shareable content on your Facebook page will also be extremely popular because of this. You can bet that their editors, who are scrolling through content for the entire working day, will see the same funny pictures and videos over and over again. However, if you can think of truly creative methods to promote your business, new ways that will encourage sharing and ‘likes,’ you might just catch Facebook Paper’s attention.

As for the categories, a business that is hoping to capitalize on what Facebook Paper offers will want to look at the app and decide which they come under — or want to come under. Then, it’s imperative to produce relevant and timely content for the audience that might have selected to watch these categories. Great writing, enormous creativity, and good social media coordination have rarely been more important.

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Daniel Sarath is a writer who has contributed to Yahoo, Lifehack and many more. He also writes for the technology website Number Direct where he regularly discusses the latest innovations, covers the biggest breaking news and shares his predictions for the future.

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