Friends Reunited goes FREE A few weeks ago I wrote about how Friends Reunited had announced their site is now free for users – in an attempt to catch up with Facebook I presumed.

Well I’ve just seen a TV ad for the ‘new Friends Reunited’ website on ITV! Correct me if I’m wrong, but I think this may be a first? A community site advertising on TV? Comparison sites have been doing it for ages, because there’s direct revenue available from visitors. However with community websites, whilst visitors = popularity = advertising revenue, there’s not the same direct correlation of clicks = pennies.

So are we in the middle of a user war between yesterday’s favourite site and the phenomenon that is Facebook? Or is there no war, and just desperation on the part of FR?

Personally I think, whilst they may be able to pull back some market share, they’ve left their comeback a bit late – about 12 – 18 months too late. Every day people from classes at school are sending me friend requests on FB. Even when I think ‘that’s it, surely there’s no one else from school that’s yet to join here’ someone else will pop up. Meanwhile I’ve had about one message sent to me on FR ever. So I think FB is the place to find old friends, whilst socialising with your current ones – 2 birds with one stone (although FB messages annoy me – send me an email! Then I can ‘reply to all’ without having to log in anywhere). A quick look at the new FR home page shows quick links to ‘RAF friends’ and ‘Navy friends’, which is instantly a way to appeal to a large number of people… but I bet these people have communities on FB already.

One point that must be mentioned that whilst FR are running an ad campaign on ITV – they are owned by the TV station – so I bet they got a good rate 😉