Was reading a report the other day on some focus testing recently undertaken for the Public Health Agency of Canada on concepts for an HIV/AIDS awareness campaign aimed at males 18-25. Focus groups were held in Toronto and Montreal. For more detail on the testing methodology and what the concepts look like, here’s the report – it’s a PDF file.
A couple of the campaign concepts tested included Facebook applications – so this piqued my interest in both cases, participants in the testing gave the ideas a resounding fail. Here’s the summary for one of the concept’s Facebook application idea (a game called “attack of the drones”):
The Facebook application was not well received by focus group participants in either Toronto or Montreal. Many indicated that they are on Facebook but they do not actively use it, nor would they invite their friends to install or load this application on their page. Participants suggested that Facebook has become more of a tool to keep in touch with their friends, hence the lack of desire to install applications. [my emphasis]
The report also quotes a participant: “I don’t install apps in Facebook.”
The summary for the other concept with a Facebook component (this time it’s a quiz for raising awareness about HIV/AIDS) continues in the same vein:
Once again the Facebook approach didn’t resonate at all with participants. They indicated they would likely not post this quiz on their Facebook page and would not be willing to pass it on to their friends. There were of course some participants that would do the quiz, however, they didn’t see the point of having it in Facebook.
From my own experience of Facebook apps, I have found that they are for the most part annoying. Looks like it’s not just me — even among a core Facebook demographic, there is little willingness to install and share applications on this platform. Facebook apps just aren’t the way to go for marketing efforts.