Facebook : 15 years of Friendship and Still Counting

Posted on 04/03/2019 by CS Web Solutions

facebook-social-media-platform

15 years ago a young and dynamic Harvard university student Mark Zuckerberg and his roommates unveiled their creation TheFacebook.com that had an uncanny resemblance with Friendster and Myspace.  Within a few months, the company, breaking the boundaries of Harvard halls reached Silicon Valley to spread its wings in other universities. Over these 15 years, their creation has expanded far beyond everyone’s expectation even Mr Zuckerberg’s. 

At that time, success was synonymous to having 250,000 users on a platform but it has redefined the meaning of success by adding four more zeroes to it and that too within 15 years. It has started its incredible journey as a website for poking your crush and over the years it has transformed itself into the most powerful engine of communication in the world.

Undeniably, Zuckerberg has changed forever the way people connect, they way businesses earn revenue, the way politicians take hold of power and also the way information passes through different communities and cultures. Today, it has become a place where grannies share pictures with their grandchildren and where state sponsored trolls initiate cyberwar against other countries. Facebook has brought everyone under the same roof.

It touches almost one third of the world’s population every month and successfully has left behind its major competitors like Whatsapp, Snapchat and Instagram. When it comes to monthly active users, it has an equal strength of 7 Twitters. Facebook is no more just a social networking site, it is the source of news for nearly half of the world, a place from which thousands of nonprofit organizations collect donations, a venue for state sponsored propaganda and a stage where people make announcements of the major events of their lives like weddings, engagements, babies and even divorce. 

Facebook has effortlessly proven itself to be an effective marketplace for used goods, a VPN company, a virtual reality headset manufacturer and a satellite developer. Besides being one of the biggest platforms for social networking, It has remarkably helped businesses reach their target audiences and have direct communication with them.

Facebook the platform 

Let’s have a look at its journey since its birth and its developments throughout these years. 

  • Zuckerberg bought Thefacebook.com in 2005 for $200000 and renamed it as Facebook.com.
  • In the year 2006 Facebook introduced the Newsfeed which received harsh criticism from its users over privacy concerns. Later in the same year it came up with Notes feature and started blogging.
  • The year 2007 witnessed the launch of Facebook mobile that brought the site in everyone’s pocket. Facebook mobile was a revolutionary step which enabled users to access the site on their phones.
  • In the same year it created Marketplace which went through several modifications before becoming the in-app feature available today.
  • In 2008 an IOS app was built with features like location sharing for friends and gradually targeted ads.
  • 2008 also brought another change in the platform with the advent of Facebook connect which was identified as the “next iteration of the Facebook platform”.  This particular feature gave users the opportunity to sign in to other sites using Facebook credentials. Facebook declared that it would help developers add social context to their sites by letting users know about their friends who had already made accounts. 
  • The year 2009 was a game changer for Facebook as it revealed its iconic feature the like button, in the year. It was further expanded in 2016 with reactions like sad, angry, funny and love. 
  • Then in 2014 Facebook gifted its users the Facebook safety check feature that was introduced only to inform the mass that their friends and family are safe during any disaster or mass attack. It is the Facebook security check feature that appears in your notification section and says someone (your friend or family) has been marked safe during a catastrophe. In 2016, Facebook at work was launched in the market which is a business platform having similar features of Slack.  

Advertising on Facebook 

Facebook ads and brand pages took its first step in the market in 2007 and Zuckerberg announced “the next hundred years will be different for advertising and it starts today”.  Now we could say that he proved his words. Facebook earned almost $55 billion last year by charging dealers to target people depending on the information available in the platform about them. The company’s digital research arm, Facebook IQ offers actionable and powerful insights on consumer behavior, marketing and measurement. It even has plans to hire AI to foresee consumer behavior in future. Facebook social ads and Facebook Beacon are two major arms of Facebook that inform about user activities on other sites for the ease of audience targeting. Unfortunately, Facebook Beacon had to retire in 2009 due to legal issues. 

Facebook has a huge collection of tools in its store for tracking user movement on and off the web that also involves Facebook pixel. Even though Facebook Beacon could not survive for long, Facebook discovered new ideas for advertisers to track consumer behavior using customers’ WiFi and Bluetooth signatures and satellite imagery and mapping data. From 2012, Ads on Facebook started appearing as featured posts in the news feed. 

Again in 2012 it added another feather in its cap by acquiring Instagram and since then it has brought in new features like Instagram direct messaging, removing Instagram stories and a video streaming service named IGTV. Now ads created on Facebook can be displayed on Facebook and Instagram stories, either in-line post or other ways. 

Over these years Facebook has either bought or created many apps and tools that have similarities with its competitors. Even in 2018 it started Collection, a sharing tab similar to Pinterest. It added a feature in the app for dating services which are similar to Tinder and Bumble. 

Here is a quick view of the reasons why it has gained such popularity amongst its users. 

  • Ease of use 
  • Constant upgradation 
  • Interesting and addictive features
  • Mobile apps for users 
  • Have users in every corner of the world 
  • Safe usage 
  • Facebook connect
  • News video feed 

In these 15 years the social networking giant has not only developed itself but also helped thousands of businesses grow with it. Staring from small businesses and startups to big enterprises it has shelter for all. 

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