Photo Courtesy of Magnus Karlsson through a Creative Commons license.

Who are you, really?

Previously I wrote about how important it is for a brand to understand the needs it meets for its customers, which are not always intuitive or even self-evident to the customers themselves. Entire industries have collapsed, or have drastically declined, for failing to understand this, including much of the media establishment.

Which brings me to Facebook’s refusal to acknowledge what it is to many of its users (and to the paying customers, advertisers): a media company. The boys at This Old Marketing talk often about the knots Facebook twists itself in to avoid being considered a media company, which investors might see as a less sure bet than a technology platform.

The 2016 presidential election and the subsequent furor over fake news shared on social media vividly demonstrated just how much people rely on Facebook for their news, and why, whether the company likes it or not, it is indeed a media company. With its new journalism project, Facebook seems to be slowly cottoning to this fact as well.

Want more evidence that Facebook is a media company? They are paying celebrities such as Antonio Brown to produce content, a story that stings a bit for us Steelers fans in the wake of our drubbing by the Patriots. And hey, there’s nothing wrong with that, and for Facebook, the sooner they figure out who they are, and act accordingly, the better.

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