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Why Facebook Could Have A Problem With Its “Places” Feature

Now as a sensitive new age guy I have realized that for women when the going gets tough the tough go shopping. It is also a well known fact that if you are becoming stressed that a bit of “retail therapy”  is far better than a visit to the shrink and possibly more expensive, especially if the credit card is handy.Why Facebook Could Have A Problem With Its Places Feature

The Facebook “Places” feature provides a fun aspect to shopping that lets you tell 200 of you closest friends by posting an update that you are about to step into a shop and max the credit card.

You can also post a photo of the shop or your accompanying friend with that message and if you are lucky you may get a special offer or voucher from participating retailers in that location that reduces the hit to the plastic. There are also a other social apps that provide a similar service such as FourSquare and Brightkite and my recommendation to them would be to shut up shop right now as Facebook is about to rule the world with their “Location Based Social Networks” app and the competitors will find the going a bit rough.

The thing is though is there is a problem in marketing paradise because this “Places” app is not attracting the female shopper. It seems that it is not the ladies that are are using these Geolocation services because according to research by Forrester, outlined below the profiles of the users is not female centric but predominantly male.

Influential:

Geolocation users are 38% more likely than the average US online adult to say that friends and family ask their opinions before making a purchase decision.

An interesting target group:

They are typically young adult males with college degrees.

Heavy mobile researchers:

They are also far more likely to search for information about businesses and products, as well as read customer ratings/reviews of products and services

So unless you are targeting a young male with a lot of money this Facebook “Places” feature will not be the place that marketers want to go if they are chasing the female shopper demographic for the moment.

So how useful do you think this service will be? Would you use it?

Image by Ivan C