Another press conference by Facebook, another round of speculation by the tech media about what it will say. Monday Facebook will be rolling out a new service or product - details unknown. Speculation is widespread that it will be rolling out its own email system, the long-rumored Project Titan.
Indeed MarketingVOX wondered if this was in the works several weeks ago the last time Facebook held the industry in suspense over a forthcoming release. We have reason to track this, more than other tech pubs: a Project Titan email system could well re-align a key online marketing activity - email marketing. There is little known about Project Titan. Rumor has it that it is an actual mail system compliant with POP3/IMAP and SMTP. Users would receive a @facebook.com address.
There are two schools of thoughts about the impact this will have on email marketing: one is that it could devastate email marketing campaigns. The other is that it could prove to be a huge boom for brands already established on Facebook.
New data from Gartner, though, suggest shades of both scenarios are likely to materialize. It predicts 20% of workers will use social networks as their primary vehicle for business communications by 2014 - and that there will be a profound impact on email. (via PC World). "The rigid distinction between email and social networks will erode," said Monica Basso, research vice president at Gartner, "Email will take on many social attributes, such as contract brokering, while social networks will develop richer email capabilities."
Gartner also predicts that social networks will begin to become part of corporate email platforms with links added to both internal and external social networks.