Okay, I've had it. I seen them all. It's been suggested that I become a fan of "Snuggling", "Sleeping", "Kissing", "Cuddling", "Sex", "I Love My Mom"...you name it, it's cluttered my suggested pages feed.
There's one HUGE problem with this. Facebook has set up public profiles NOT for random acts. They've set them up as official sources for businesses, organizations and public figures. These not so random public profiles are set up by poachers-- those who sit on public profile names-- build an audience, and sell it to the highest bidder.
Case in point: The OraBrush disaster. Hip Hip Hooray, say the poachers! Brands will pay per fan to acquire these sites! YAY! OraBrush, a tongue cleaning product, purchased the "kisses" public profile. Who can blame them, really? Kisses has 1.15 MILLION fans-- something that Orabrush could not possibly have gotten on their own. But there are problems with this. Here are just a few of them:
1. FANS of Kisses, are NOT FANS of ORABRUSH-- nor did they sign up to be fans of Orabrush.
2. It's completely against everything Facebook stands for in terms of openess, authenticity and connectivity
3. It rewards people who have violated Facebook's Terms of Service-- as entreprend nurial as they might be-- Facebook Public Profiles that are unofficial destroy the credibility and integrity of Facebook's entire system for brands and companies.
Here's the BIG reason:
Collectively, brands and companies have spent millions of dollars with Facebook to create community. Engagement ads, PPC, all driving within the site to "Become a Fan" of a brand. Why would a brand continue to do that, when they can just buy fans from a poacher? Why would Papa John's Pizza spend six figures with Facebook when they can spend 0.03 cents per fan (as Nick O'Neill's source quotes)and buy the 4.3 million fans of "Pizza" for roughly $129,000-- even though those fans may never have heard of Papa or his John? Why would any clothing chain try and build a community, when they can just pay somebody who sat on a public profile of 1.5 million fans called "shopping"?
I realize, of course, that to the consumer, this doesn't seem like a big deal. Trying to keep it relevent here: remember-- if you like Facebook, and you want to keep using it-- they've got to make money. And if advertisers aren't spending money on Facebook by building communities there-- well, you see the downward spiral.
This needs to stop. Today. It hurts brands. It hurts fans. It hurts Facebook. Its' simply bad business.