A couple of weeks ago Facebook announced the launch of Graph Search. Almost instantly the internet was buzzing with mixed reactions. Some thought that privacy would be a key issue and some thought that its merely Facebook’s move into Google territory. I believe its a new evolution in search and like it or hate it you will see this redefine targeted search.
So what is Graph Search? Simply put - It’s search and search results based upon what your friends like or do. Its this simple search that will make us, over time, use Facebook for everything we do on the internet. Currently you can only search for content that has been shared by you, but I see the boundaries expanding over time and with more than 1 billion people on the site coupled with 240 billion photos and 1 trillion connections in the social graph, that’s a lot of ratified information out there. Graph Search will also assist Bing Search and eat into that huge 66.7 per cent market share that Google now dominates with. All this is possible only if there is extensive use of the feature which I’m sure will happen as they are doing about a billion queries a day without any effort. The uphill task of breaking the habit of ‘Google it’ has begun and Facebook’s massive pool of social data seems the be the weapon of choice.
So here is another place where all marketers would want to be present, where (in time) a lot of people do their search and especially if they can be on the positive end of the people's thoughts and activity. ORM (Object Relational Mapping) will become key to whatever brands do on social media now more than ever. Brands will have to get active in posting specials, new product information, blog posts and engaging comments. A few online entities like entertainment, travel, F&B, dating sites need to keep an active look out in this space as the source of information for any decision making will be made on Facebook in the future. For local businesses, Graph Search might just be more relevant than big review directory sites.
Privacy will be the main concern once this is deployed to everyone and hence that is the reason why Facebook is beefing up its privacy settings in practically everything you do on the site; so be careful what you release to which viewing audience.
Most of the people that have used the Facebook Graph Search have talked about it positively and I’m just hoping to get off the waiting list and experience the same.
Carlton D’Silva is the creative director at Hungama Digital Media and has spent over 16 years in the digital space. He takes insult when you call the digital medium new media…16 years should be old enough! Find him on twitter@TheWordOfGawd