Facebook may be planning to make a launch into the music market, taking on YouTube, Google Play Music, Spotify, Apple Music, and other services.
The social network is unarguably well positioned to capture an audience, and their video efforts have been notable so far (without necessarily denting competitors, however).
That said, Facebook has also long been plagued with a 'Failure to Launch' new products. Witness Facebook Home, Facebook Email, Poke, Paper, etc... A more fundamental problem is about basic user behavior: people use Facebook mostly for what it is, a place for social networking. Seeing videos or news articles or whatever tends to be incidental, rather than a go-to reason to be there. Someone Posts it, we click, no one does and we don't; Promoted Posts lose attention if over saturated or poorly done; and Facebook itself can only 'crank the algo' to boost new efforts just so far, especially when they wish to launch to multiple products around the same time.
They have a Constellation Problem. Google, while best known for a Search Engine, is a Constellation of go-to products like Search, Email, Video, etc... Each of these can function as a standalone focused on its own purposes; YouTube isn't forced to launch new products for the Search team, which isn't forced to launch new products for the email team. In general, each does what they do best. Apple is also a Constellation: Phones, Apps, and Services, including Music.
Spotify, on the contrary, is only music, with no other distractions whatsoever. It needn't balance musichounds with rockhounds, scientists, and grandmothers.
Facebook therefore needs to achieve a rapid uptake of more-than-casual users of a new product. They can't give it preference in the News Feed forever or entirely if people don't bite.
In addition, getting people to spend money with Facebook can hardly be said to have disrupted any online markets, except maybe Flash games and those are no longer in fashion.
If they can overcome these challenges, however, they could be a huge threat to established players, assuming they aren't torpedoed by simple market fatigue (i.e. "Oh no, not ANOTHER Subscription Music Service!').
"Who gave you eyes like that, and said you could keep them."
1. Went shopping for a gift card for a friend at my local bookstore, slipped it inside a birthday card and dropped it off at his house.
2. Added up my pharmacy receipts and mailed them off to my insurance provider ( a chore I always put off, but today I forced myself to do it).
3. Reached out via facebook to a friend I hadn't spoken to in years.
4. Telephoned another friend and made plans to get together next week.
5. Walked to and from my local Starbucks and had a vanilla bean frappuccino.
And I'm feeling pretty good this evening.
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