So, Facebook is rumored to be launching a location-tracking app in mid-March that can continuously report on the location of your friends, according to a recent Bloomberg report.
It will even track locations when the app isnt turned on, a feature which is triggering privacy concerns but perhaps pleasing marketers who use Facebook ads. Knowing the location and habits of consumers allows for ads that target their whereabouts.
For users, the new Facebook app will function like Foursquares radar-like features, sending alerts when youre close to a friend or when youre close to a restaurant or bar that your friend goes to regularly.
In this way, consumers themselves become the marketers as their buying habits influence their friends with no extra effort required. Location-tracking apps like this are poised to trigger the modern day word-of-mouth marketing.
While location-tracking may creep out users concerned with how Facebook handles private information, the social media companys data use policy puts it in a strong position to charge forward with the app.
It cautions users that information on their location can be used to tell you and your friends about events nearby or offer details to you that you might be interested in. Facebook says it only holds that information until its no longer useful, but if youre tracking trends and habits, thats forever!
For mobile marketers, the app will likely offer more opportunities to position ads for very specific audiences of the more than 1 billion users and growing who access Facebook from their mobile devices.