Facebook Places to Enhance Digital Signage Networks

The covers are finally off of Facebook’s location product. Facebook Places went live Wednesday night. Social media and the location-based services sector will never be the same. With the 500 million user strong social network joining the location game, the “check-in,” made popular by services like Foursquare, Gowalla, and MyTown, is ready to go mainstream.

Existing as the Web’s core social platform, Facebook will come to dominate the location-based sector. Foursquare, Gowalla, and smaller niche applications will continue to exist, but Facebook is set to become the center of the Location marketplace. Just as Facebook is the central repository of our social graphs, so too will the company harness the millions of location data points which will be created by its members on a daily basis.

With Facebook Places, the community will give greater context to specific locations. Tapping into our social connections, geo-social trends, geo-tagged content, location-based updates, etc., Facebook has the potential to turn individual places into geysers of actionable information. The converging streams of social and location data will give places enormous depth, as well as meaning, that have never before been tapped. Places – from local pizza shops to professional sports stadiums – will benefit from FB harnessing the myriad of customer interactions and conversations that constitue their DNA. Facebook’s vibrant community of users, which total more than 500 million at last count, will generate location-specific data to a degree that will make Foursquare’s current activity look like a rain drop.

How Will Facebook Places Benefit Digital Signage Networks?

Facebook Places will magnify locations. As a platform, FB Places will expand recommendations, tips, connections, multimedia content, etc. of a given venue or business. With greater information about the places and businesses around us, data once confined to the web will flow freely throughout our world. Digital signage networks have the opportunity of harnessing fountains of social content for distribution at the place-based level. Heightened context around location can be utilized to enhance the foundation of digital out-of-home media networks.

The more information we have about the dynamics of Location, the more targeted content can be developed to engage consumers therein. As we follow the links of our social networks, meaning can be derived from pieces of data sprinkled around geographic areas. By connecting the dots between places we go and our social profiles, we can better define a venue’s identity. Greater insight into the interpersonal dynamics and external factors that shape a location will equip business owners, retailers, and marketers with the means to communicate more effectively with consumers.

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