online journalism

Facebook wants to be the new Groupon?

Facebook Deals in San Francisco, CAIn a recent article by the NASDAQ community, Facebook has released a feature on their website allowing users to access “Facebook Deals.” The feature has the potential to be a top contender with other online coupon sites like Groupon and LivingSocial.

The feature allows local businesses to offer local coupons to members. While the idea is obviously not an original one nor is it a new concept, Facebook knows how to create success. Really, how can you can go wrong with offering discounts and coupons to local businesses to 600 million users? While Groupon and LivingSocial are very popular, I don’t think they have numbers that high, yet. (But I could be wrong!)

The great part about Facebook Deals is that when one purchases a deal it is then posted on their Facebook wall which then means it will be broadcasted on their friend’s newsfeeds, thus helping the coupon become more popular and gain more buyers.

As of now there are only five cities that are trying out Facebook Deals:

• Atlanta, Georgia;

• Austin, Texas;

• Dallas, Texas;

• San Diego, California,

• and San Francisco, California

While I think they should have two of the five in other cities besides California and Texas, if Facebook Deals is to become popular it would in those cities. (I wonder why not New York City, Washington D.C., or even Chicago weren’t chosen though…?)

Groupon website page for Cedar Rapids/Iowa City, IAGroupon is still one of the most popular online discount coupon websites with it being represented in 150 markets in North America and 100 markets in Europe, Asia, and South America, according to it’s Wikipedia page.

Facebook and other social media/networking/social sites have made me think about the idea of “new” and “old” ideas in terms of technology and monthly/yearly developments…

Is someone worse off creating a “new” idea and implementing it FIRST because someone will just come along and “improve it” or “advance it” than if they had just waited until someone else came up with the idea first? 

For example: MySpace came before Facebook and it was a huge hit and then Facebook came and with its advancements and slight differences/add-ons it CRUSHED MySpace.

But then there’s the example of when someone “takes their money and runs” after they’ve implemented their “new” idea/concept/businesses: Victoria Secret founder sells the brand to the Limited and ends up committing suicide because it goes on to be EVEN more successful after he’s no longer attached to the name.

As long as there is capitalism, people, money, and ideas around then there will always be this constant struggle of deciding what is the best business decision and how can we “one up” the competitors.

Is it nice to have options when it comes to products? Yes, I like how I can buy clothes from many different places but when I work in retail, I hate it. It does make you believe though that there is rarely a unique idea left in “new” concepts because SOMEONE SOMEWHERE has already thought of something similar or even better.

So, who knows what will come of these Facebook Deals…they may become successful based mainly on their high membership, or they may not be as awesome as Groupon or LivingSocial.

Until then though, there will be that person or team, thinking of the next step for online coupon websites.

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