Turn to Your Left at the End of the Sky

The Most Valuable Social Graph

As online advertising matures it is likely that ad targeting will be increasingly fine-grained. It strikes me that whoever has the most valuable social graph will have a formidable edge in the online ad wars. There is a lot more additional information that can be gleaned from most social graphs: hierarchy of connections (weighting each graph connection by importance to each user), relationship (co-worker, family member, close friend, casual acquaintance), type of content exchanged along that connection etc.

The candidates who seem likely to win are:

  1. Facebook – their graph has rich content due to the additional data they derive from tagging, email and other activities which reveal the strength of social connections.
  2. Skype – the people we call often are likely to be close friends or co-workers
  3. Xobni – located on the most valuable enterprise real estate, this application has insight into who you email, how quickly you respond to them, and even what you write about
  4. MySpace – the denser graph (more “friends” per user) has diluted the value of the graph compared to Facebook.
  5. LinkedIn – heavy business focus but a lot more information is volunteered at each node. Connections between nodes probably yields minimal extra information.
  6. Verizon – they have the data but are probably restricted from mining it.

Of course, pooling the data between all these graphs would result in a tremendous database.

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July 23, 2008 - Posted by | Computers & Internet, Technology | , ,

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