Wednesday, August 15, 2007

Facebook as a (Traditional) Advertising Platform

Caught this on Facebook's News Feed today. Have to say that this type of advertising works pretty seamlessly into the site's design. So much better than banners, skyscrapers, even videos and other dynamic online advertising. Plus it's nice to know that companies are not just creating groups but linking to content that the audience will find entertaining and possibly useful. Showtime could have easily had sent me to their Group page and asked me to be a friend - and maybe I would have because I was feeling in an open, friendly mood or wanted to have 10 groups rather than 9 to round it out or some other equally unworthy reason.

Not just that, I like that they're linking to 4 different places, which I'm assuming they'll optimize based on metrics. (Made me think of Google's ability to test different "faces"/starting screen images for the same video to see which were most effective in getting clicks, which I think is a great offering.)

So although I don't subscribe to Showtime, I couldn't help but click on those pretty little boxes to learn more. And I'm glad I did because Addicted to Weeds took me to this video (below) featuring my favorite dude, Jay, from 40 Year Old Virgin...who I guess is also on this show, which I'm one step closer to watching. Now that I think of it, Showtime probably knows that one show alone will not get most people to subscribe to the channel, so offering a link to Californication, Dexter, or Brotherhood is not just nice diversity or hedging their bet, but a crucial decision to make us tip. (Of course, the don't expect one video strip to move me from no awareness of the shows to subscription, but recently hearing that Michael C. Hall is tearing up the screen on Dexter from a friend may have done the trick. Plus, Double D on Cali. 3 shows - that's more than my 2 on HBO. Sold!)

Showtime have done well - Facebook seems like a pretty smart forum to highlight its show and its cleverly-named, Homegrown Humor Video Contest.

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