The Permanence of Social Networking.

Over the last year a comment I keep hearing about both Facebook and Twitter is, “There is no convenient way to archive my feed.” The idea that people want to save their posts to Facebook and Twitter seems to be a common theme that companies are trying to solve for these days, and while there is an app to turn your Tweets into a book, I haven’t really seen anything for Facebook.

This morning while doing some research for a project at work I came across this.

French company Bouygues Télécom asked DDB Paris to come up with an idea that would supplement and promote the launch of their new social networking campaign on Facebook. Bouygues Télécom wanted something that would go beyond the typical annoy your friends by posting things to their wall and inviting them to join/install the Facebook app. So, DDB took a look at how most people use Facebook on a daily basis. What they discovered was most people forget the moments that they share because there is no way to archive them. The solution DDB came up with was, convert your Facebook posts into a book.

Using Facebook ads, Bouygues Télécom asked people to participate in the creation of their books and receive a printed copy of their statuses, photos, and posts. The application allowed the first 1000 that signed up to choose up to 10 friends to add into your book, as well as the desired time frame. It could be specific to things like your birthday, or a wedding, or you could choose to start from the very beginning of your profile. After only two days Bouygues Télécom gained 15.000 new fans and the limited edition of 1,000 books were gone in only one hour after the campaign launch.

What this proves is, people want to archive what they post to social networking sites, and they are probably willing to pay for it. Bouygues Télécom’s campaign was centered around a print on demand run limited to the first 1000 people who signed up. This was probably do to the cost of printing, and the variable size of each printing. (I could see some people having a thousand page book) It will be interesting to see if anyone else latches on to this concept and tries to create an application or experience that allows anyone to archive their socially networked life in hardbound glory.