Surprise, Someone Else Says Facebook Is Dead In The WaterBy: Josh Wolford - June 21, 2012
George Colony, CEO of Forrester Research, doesn’t think that Facebook is going to survive in the world of technological competition in the future. In fact, he thinks they’re “toast.”
Speaking at the keynote of Forrester’s European forum in Paris, Colony had this to say about the biggest social network in the world:
“I think Facebook is toast. The company is in major trouble around mobile engagement and the app Internet.”
Of course, Colony’s concern with Facebook is not uncommon. The “someone else” part of the title refers to highly publicized comments from one analyst back when Facebook’s stock price was really (really, really, really) hurting. Ironfire Capital’s Eric Jackson said that Facebook would “disappear in the way that Yahoo has disappeared” within the next 5 to 8 years.
His concern? Facebook’s ability to monetize mobile, which he predicted as the force that would dominate the future.
Forrester’s Colony echoed those sentiments today. According to PCWorld, he said that “mobile engagement, built on architectural change brought about by the app internet will replace the broader Web as the focus of innovation and change.”
And apparently, Facebook won’t be a part of that.
Facebook’s IPO blunder was no doubt a wake up call for many investors and prospective investors. And the company struggle to monetize mobile was always at the center of that doubt, especially after Facebook amended their IPO filing to state that they “do not currently directly generate any meaningful revenue from the use of Facebook mobile products, and [their] ability to do so successfully is unproven.”
It’s still unclear whether Facebook will be able to truly monetize mobile and if it will bring in an untold stream of revenue, but some recent reports suggest that the company may have reason to hope. In a period following the point where Facebook began offering mobile-only ad options to advertisers, mobile ads performed very well. Much better, in fact, than desktop ads (whether they be News Feed or right-side) or all other ad packages combined. One ad partner even found that the mobile-only Sponsored Stories ads had a 25x higher click-through rate than Sponsored Stories on the desktop.
Colony isn’t the first, and I’m sure he won’t be the last to call time of death on Facebook. Of course, much does depend on mobile – realm that is undeniably expanding at a substantial rate. This also isn’t Colony’s first prediction to make news. Back in late 2011, he predicted the burst of the social startup bubble.