We’re always on the lookout for trends that appear online, and our social media experts have started noticing a buzz developing around branded social media sites.  We’re not talking about branded social media profiles or Facebook apps, but entire social media networks built around one brand.

Trend Watch Branded Social Network

A few weeks ago it was reported that Manchester United is building their own social network for their 500 million international supporters.  The platform will have sponsorship opportunities for brands and will sell club merchandise through an e-commerce function on the network.  There will also be multimedia and exclusive content available to users.

HSBC has also joined the trend, announcing that they will be developing their “own version of Facebook” for customers’ financial and non-financial needs. While the project is still in its early days, the platform will be part of a larger digital strategy aimed at engaging existing and potential customers.

The opportunity for engagement is huge since all members of the network would be interested in your brand. Imagine apps built into entire social networks, or hundreds of millions of people participating in one conversation. There are definite growth prospects for social media marketing for any brand big enough to create their own network.

While branded social networks aren’t in full swing yet, we are inclined to believe that they will become more and more common. Larger multinational corporations with a customer base of hundreds of millions of people will most likely develop these platforms, although we could see this also working well for universities and charities.  It will be interesting to see if the public is loyal enough to join these branded networks and how the platforms engage on an even grander scale.  It will also be interesting to see if this affects major social networks like Facebook and Twitter.

For now, though, we’ll keep and eye on the trend and daydream of how great a Cite Social Network could be.

For more information on our social media services, contact our Facebook app developers at 0116 254 9888.