Facebook Gifts… For That Occasion When You Have NO Other Option

lemon cake

Lemon Cake or Carrot Cake? Both suck. Go for the chocolate

Remember that kid who got you a stapler for your 8th birthday? It’s the thought that counts…but a stapler? Facebook is trying to bring bad gift giving like this into the mainstream with their new gifts feature. For the day I’m just going to ignore tech talk so that we can get into the thick of this from a real person’s perspective. Read on for the details.

*Something that will blow your mind: Facebook Founder and CEO Mark Zuckerberg says Facebook IS NOT A Social Network!

Let’s Look At Facebook’s Gift Suggestions

  • Lemon Cake: Lemon cake? Who the heck gives lemon cake as a gift? First of all, cake is not a gift. It’s a dessert at the end of your birth day to celebrate that special time of the year. Secondly, LEMON? I’m a chocoholic and it simply doesn’t make sense to me. What percentage of people would choose lemon over chocolate?
  • Switchblade Mustache Comb: I totally need this (is what the one guy with a mustache that is still stuck in the ’60s said)! I used to love switchblade combs when I would get them for a dollar a piece at the arcade…at the age of six. I’m not saying this appeals to no one, but I’ll point out that this was a girl that was having her birthday. Not sure how many women need a mustache comb switchblade.
  • Protein Bakery Cookies: This actually isn’t too bad alone. I have plenty of health-conscious friends who would buy this. Are birthdays not about indulgence though? We don’t want to eat healthy on our birthday. It’s even been psychologically proven. So it’s just not something I would ever give as a gift, especially for a birthday.

Good idea…Poor Execution

Facebook did have some winners. They suggested Starbucks giftcards, which are fantastic, very useful gifts, and they also offered non-healthy customizable birthday cookies. These gifts show that there is potential with the right execution. There were some great suggestions for the holidays, and early reports indicate that they had moderate success with gifts beta over the holidays.

The thing is. They should be carefully monitoring what they’re offering to whom. They’ve proven with their ad platform that they can sort by demographic very specifically, so they should have it down to a science who sees what gifts. They should be controlling their gift selection as tightly as Apple controls their app store. Keep it on a short chain, and make sure that every person who sees the gift screen is tempted to buy something.

But that’s just my two cents. What do you think of Facebook’s gift feature? Also… Should Facebook Hire Teenage Girls? Read and Decide

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Michael Sitver

Michael Sitver is a technology insider who has been blogging about technology since 2011. Along the way, he's interviewed founders of innovative startups, and executives from fortune 500 companies, and he's tried dozens or hundreds of gadgets. Michael has also contributed to works featured in Newsday, The San Francisco Chronicle, and the associated press. Michael also occasionally consults, and writes for Seeking Alpha and Yahoo News.

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