As you have probably heard by now, today Facebook introduced improvements to profiles on the site. As they called out in the blog post announcement:
The new Facebook profile makes it easier for you to tell your story and learn about your friends. It now has more room for your photos and experiences, and it includes new ways to share the things you care about most.
While the announcements make it sound as if the improvement are about Facebook users, I would argue it is really about Facebook advertisers.
One of the major reasons Facebook is emerging as such as an intriguing advertising platform is the targeting capability that it gives brands. An advertiser is able to specifically target a person through the information that is available in their Facebook profile. This information goes far beyond simple age / sex / location and includes everything from music tastes to political views.
But the problem is that very few people spend the time to update their profiles on a regular basis. As a result, much of the information that marketers are using to target is either out of date or not as reflective of the person as it could be.
I personally think that the new profiles are an attempt to change that. By elevating and enhancing the way information is displayed in the profile, Facebook is hoping to trigger people to update their profiles. Obviously Facebook would like people to keep the profiles updated, but this release at minimum provides a trigger to get people to make the change this one time. And with that update, people will be providing more valuable data to Facebook and its advertisers.