If I were Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg for one year…

By: ispeculatornew
Date posted: 12.23.2010 (5:00 am) | Write a Comment  (8 Comments)

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With the holidays around the corner, we decided to do a mini series about a few of the tech stocks that we follow all year long. We are the first ones to judge and critic how these companies are run but as they say, it’s always much easier to critic it then actually run a company. So we decided to go ahead and write a series about what we would do with these companies. Hoping you will enjoy the series:

Dec 20    If I were Google CEO Eric Schmidt for one year…
Dec 21    If I were Yahoo CEO Carol Bartz for one year…
Dec 22    If I were AOL CEO Tim Armstrong for one year…
Dec 23    If I were Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg for one year…
Dec 24    If I were Apple CEO Steve Jobs for one year…
Dec 27    If I were Ebay CEO John Donahoe for one year…
Dec 28    If I were Amazon CEO … for one year…

Management in the past few years

It’s no secret on this blog, I am a big fan of Facebook. Yes of the website.. But more so of the company, how it is being run, and even its current valuation. Some consider it outrageous to see a company with fairly small revenues now trading at a $50 billion valuation. I consider it a major bargain. I’ve said that Facebook is currently the best buying opportunity in the market and still believe it although it’s not easy to get actual exposure to the company since Facebook is not listed yet.
So yes, I consider Facebook to be very well run at the moment, mostly because of these reasons:

-Focused on user experience: While companies like MySpace made critical errors by focusing on revenues too early, Facebook’s attitude towards its product and its business has been nothing short of extraordinary as it tries to build the “new internet

-Mark Zuckerberg: He’s not perfect, far from it, but as I wrote about recently, he remains focused on taking his company to the next level rather than cashing out

-Talent: In a world where talent is a very rare resource, Facebook’s innovation and focus on improvement have been key in attracting talent

There is no doubt in my opinion that Facebook is one of the best run companies in the tech space which will make it a bigger challenge to assume the CEO position!

General Vision

-Make the web a more social and friendly place

Initiatives/Priorities I would get started on

Twitter : Facebook’s only credible competition comes from Twitter which is the 2nd social player on the internet. Twitter is huge because it fills needs that Facebook is not currently filling. I think that by separating status updates (similar to Twitter functions) from everything else, the need and usefullness of Twitter would be greatly diminished. It would then become importantto offer mobile apps that have one basic function: “Status Update Screens”. Finally, give the possibility to add someone either as a “friend” or simply follow their status updates. The strategy could be tweeked over time but I think it would bring some of Twitter’s flow back to Facebook without hurting Facebook’s nature.

Privacy Policy: One of the only problems with Facebook or issues that have complicated life for Facebook is privacy. I would make the policy very transparent about the non-sharing of private information. By default, users would only be sharing their photos and information with friends although they can change that. Also, I would segregate information so that users that use applications would only give out the information that they want to give out to those applications. It is critical for users to trust Facebook.

Security: Facebook needs to do everything in its power to ensure the security of the users information. A breach similar to what Gawker is going through would be a major blow for the rest of the big plan. I would thus hire security experts and challengethese firms to get around the security setup giving out rewards if they can. Security needs to be the top priority. Users could even get authentication software if they use Facebook credits (see below).

Facebook credits: Thanks to Facebook connect, users are getting increasingly comfortable with using one login around the web. That should be expanded. Users could make purchases to major websites by simply logging in and clicking buy. Entering the address and billing info would be a thing of the past as Facebook would be processing the transaction. That means minimal risk because only Facebook would have access to the credit card information. It would then send the money (after fees of course) to the merchant as well as shipping information. A 1 click buy on almost any website.

Display advertising: Facebook has more eyeballs than anyone else on the internet and I think it’s quickly becoming the best place for brands to advertise themselves. There are many different ways to do it but I think there are ways to do it that will please both users and advertisers such as special offers. I would work closely with advertising agencies to find the best ways to get these big companies to start using Facebook as one of their main advertising mediums.

Create Locak Yellow Pages (with charged listings and comments): Facebook knows where you live. So the next time you are looking for a dentist, wouldn’t it be convenient to simply take a look at the listings and see which one your friends are using? Listing would be free and users could give out comments, ratings or anything else. The money would come from special promotions that merchants could run or when they pay money to get additional visibility.

Social Search  (friends, etc): Facebook is already making inroads with search thanks to its “Like” button. I think the company could expand greatly the concept in order to help us share content that we like more easily. Storing information and displaying it in an optimized way would make searching the web a much easier experience.

Delay IPO: As much as investors like myself are excited about a future IPO, I would delay it as much as possible. I had written about the subject and basically I believe that Facebook as a private company is keeping its eyes on the long term which is critical.

Any thoughts or ideas?

I would love to hear your thoughts or ideas regarding all of these initiatives!

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8 Comments

  1. Comment by OneDay — December 23, 2010 @ 12:38 pm

    Great posts. Just a few points here:

    – Mark Zuckerberg is Time magazine’s 2010 person of the year!! He profoundly changed the world with Facebook (yes I’m on FB everyday, thanks to him hehehe).

    – Like you said “he remains focused on taking his company to the next level rather than cashing out”, I am pretty sure I will be the first one to cash out hehe

    – And he just sign the Giving Pledge!! I think that this action is amazing!!

    Three majors priorities for me:

    – Improve and clarify privacy issues.

    – Work on my PR skills! Mark Zuckerberg is young and wants to project the image of a cool guy. He’s a great inspiration for young entrepreneurs, but he needs to step up and to change to a more mature image.

    – Facebook will launch a product that will merge texts, online chats, and emails into one central panel. It’s supposed to be the next revelation. Keep on creating innovative products!

    Long life to Facebook!!

  2. […] If I were Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg for one year… […]

  3. Comment by IS — December 26, 2010 @ 1:46 pm

    @OneDay – Thanks so much, all very true and very good points, love it:)

  4. Comment by Zavi — March 4, 2011 @ 12:11 pm

    controversial plan from Facebook… rebuttal rumors…
    http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/02/28/facebook-home-addresses-phone-numbers_n_829459.html

    who’s saying the truth?

  5. Comment by IS — March 4, 2011 @ 8:28 pm

    Difficult to say, no doubt!! Thanks for the info Zavi. I personally tend to trust Facebook, hopefully I won’t be proved wrong on this.

  6. […] in general. I have been talking about Facebook for some time now, have described what I would do if I were Mark Zuckerberg for a year and have been raving about the greatest opportunity of our investing lifetime, being a Facebook […]

  7. Comment by N/A — August 16, 2011 @ 1:27 am

    I would wouldn’t crush Twitter. Why not join them? They do stuff differently and FaceBook and Twitter are used for different purposes. I would (If I was FaceBook CEO) make sure that every mobile platform had easy access. PS3, X-BOX, iPhone, iPad, Android, Linux, Windows, Mac and so on. They have done good job so far, but FaceBook really needs an actual program that installs on a computer as well as the browser based one. Because the browser based one has to be configured to work on multiple devices with multiple hardware and on multiple web browsers features are limited. Why make an optional application for Windows and Mac that give users more features and faster was to connect. Then I would bargain Microsoft to include FaceBook integrated with the next release of Windows.

  8. Comment by IS — August 16, 2011 @ 3:52 am

    @N/A – What kind of program would this be exactly?

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