A Couple Quick Thoughts on Facebook’s FriendFeed Acquisition

I'll save writing a custom post on this as I'm on the road at an event at the moment (surprise), but between some train rides and cocktail hours I managed to share a few thoughts in Ad Age and BusinessWeek. 

In BusinessWeek, I basically make FriendFeed sound like search crack for marketers. I think the quote's accurate.

More effective search of current conversations and popular topics could
lead to more profits for Facebook, which has taken criticism for
focusing more on growth in the number of its users than in generating
revenue. "Being able to get a taste of what consumers are doing on 50
different sites can be very powerful," says David Berkowitz, director
of emerging media and client strategy for digital marketing agency 360i, of FriendFeed's search. By contrast, he says Facebook's search tools have not been as effective for marketers.

In Ad Age, I go into greater detail about what this means for marketers. Here's an excerpt, but the full post is much longer.

After a late 2008 growth spurt, FriendFeed's audience leveled off, according to Compete data, hitting 902,000 unique visitors in January 2009 and attracting 918,000 in July 2009. During the same span in 2009, Compete says Facebook added 54 million U.S. visitors. That growth has led a lot of marketers to ignore FriendFeed, and it's hard to blame them for fishing where the fish are.

Aggregating social identities
It's a shame, though, because FriendFeed is a valuable service, and it will only be more valuable as consumers participate with more social-media properties. On FriendFeed, users can aggregate updates from 58 services including Facebook, Twitter, Digg, SlideShare, Pandora and Amazon. Those users can follow each other across the range of those services to get all of their updates in one place.

Two other notes: 

1) I'm on Facebook at www.facebook.com/dberkowitz and FriendFeed at www.friendfeed.com/davidberkowitz

2) Read more about FriendFeed's value for marketers in 360i's Social Marketing Playbook (in the Arenas chapter)