- Facebook is a Social Networking Service, which was founded in 2004. This company was founded by Mark Zukerberg and has evolved due to its innovative international strategy as well as its company culture, becoming the leading social Networking service in the world. Facebook innovative international strategy has enabled it to grow into over 200 countries around the globe and as of October 2012 reached an all time high of 1 billion users. In this story i will examine how Facebook international strategy has aided in its growth and has made it into the company it is today.
How has Facebook become so large internationally while others competitors such as Myspace and Google+ failed?
- Facebook drastic growth can be seen due to its International Strategy, which includes making Facebook available to every country in their native language. Facebook did this by enabling user to personalize Facebook in their own native language, this enabled Facebook to grow faster than most of its rivals as local, and would encourage their friends to try out the international website which was available from almost the get-go in every language. This has enabled Facebook to grow where other competitors could not. For example Facebook was able to grow a drastic 38% in June of 2007 while its competitors who in theory offered a very similar product where only able to grow a measly 3%. Facebook has been able to do this by using a more formal approach than myspace and twitter and has better privacy settings enabling the user to control what information he wishes to share with his audience. As can be seen by the design below Facebook had been spreading to location all around the globe. In certain countries, such as in spain, with a population of 47,190,493 over 25% of the population uses Facebook.
Facebook received many advantages of becoming a global company, among which are:
-Lower cost due to scale and scope economics
-The benefits of having a brand that is known everywhere
-The Greater efficiencies it receives to its ability to transfer best practices across markets
-Larger innovation that transnational or multi domestic companies due to knowledge sharing and capacity transfer
- Facebook however has hit hard points in its international strategy, When Facebook decided to expand into the Chinese market in 2008. China who did not want Facebook in their country, decided to ban it. These Government policies of the host country made life difficult for Facebook, However even thought this ban was enforced with a firewall, Facebook has over 60 million user in china using Facebook in 2012. This current hold on the Chinese market is larger than all of the other international Networking services. The runner up is Twitter, which has a user base of 35 million in china. This global Company tries to connect the world and make the world a giant melting pot. As Mark Zukerberg stated " "By giving people the power to share, we're making the world more transparent" This is what many countries are against, as they do not want their citizens to be influenced by the outside world.
- Facebook has been able to have such a successful international strategy due to its various partnerships. These partnerships include Google, Skype and others such as Zygna. These companies have given Facebook a competitive edge against their opponents, in the international market. This is due to many reasons, firstly Google has enabled Facebook to translate their messages from language to language with a click of a single button. This has aided people to learn languages as well as contact people all around the world. Skype has enabled Facebook to have video chats with people from around the world directly on Facebook, taking away the competitive advantage that Google+ had on the market. Many companies such as Zygna have created games that are playable on Facebook, this has made many individuals spending a significant larger amount of time on Facebook.
- Recently a new strategic alliance has been initiated, among which include Microsoft,yahoo as well as 11 corporations. This alliance will helps to combat phishing. Phishing is a "a way of fooling email and web users into providing sensitive information, including credit card numbers". This combat strategy is a great tool in international strategy. As when people see Facebook and these other corporations in a positive light fighting against evil, they are more likely to look at the product and want to be a part of it.
- Facebook also uses different types of international strategy, among which is its international marketing strategy. By having ADS, contests and events. Facebook is able to reach a larger base of individuals, and award them for their consumer loyalty. People eventually start to depend on Facebook in their everyday life. Facebook uses personal interest of individuals to format the advertisements to fit the user and sells the information to larger companies. They also use the friend networks and say such things as "your friend like this item would you like to look at it", by marketing to friends they use those connections in order to make an individual buy a company product. This can in some regards be considered non-ethical, however when an individual signs up for Facebook he is made aware that the virtual property that the user posts on Facebook belongs to them. Large companies however love then and are willing to pay a significant amount to get a narrower range on what consumers might enjoy their products.
- Why is Facebook international strategy, as well as the company so successful? This is mostly due to the fact that face book makes the user do all the work rather then investing their own time and resources. If a company wishes to advertise on Facebook they have to pay, and create the page themselves. Another reason why Facebook strategy is so great, which can be seen in the article below, is because the " the brands send the traffic and inject the revenue." . Where almost 90% of companies will have a link on their homepage linking the users to Facebook.
- One of Facebook Motto as can be see by the video below is "connecting the world" by comparing Facebook to chairs, Facebook is able to show that by using Facebook, people will be able to stay in contact with their family, friends or even the ones they love in a easy and fun way. This makes the consumer more willing to use their products due to the benefits that come from it. By making people around the world think that their product is necessary. Facebook also uses the like button as a marketing strategy. Once an individual clicks this like button it will appear on all of his or her friends news wall, this will enable a huge amount of advertising to take place. This is due to the fact that when someone friend likes a company individuals will be more likely to purchase the product rather buying it without knowledge.
- Facebook shows that people around the world will be able to connect with each other with only a few degrees of separation, making them want to find old lost friends. This is a great international strategy, as people in this day and age are traveling around the world very often and are able to keep contact with just one click of a button.
- However even if Facebook does receive significant amount of bad press due to their privacy settings and selling the users information.They also do positive thing to keep their image in a good light as part of their international strategy. They aid young people to find jobs by hosting conferences and how to better find jobs, and even pointing people in the right direction.