Popular game developer and publisher Zynga has announced its plans to launch a social network of its own in the next few months; Zynga Direct. It’s a website that will allow them to create an online community separate from all social media sites and is a part of their overall direct-to-consumer strategy. The concept is that you can play Zynga games outside of Facebook and across multiple platforms.
Interestingly enough, Zynga is almost entirely owned by Facebook and therefore has to provide Facebook with a cut of all it’s virtual goods revenue. For this reason Zynga is reaching out and attempting to create its own social platform so it can control and own it’s users rather than consistently relying on Facebook to succeed. That being said, Zynga isn’t planning to ditch Facebook entirely and still plans to utilize Facebook Connect. The benefit of creating a separate community is that Zynga will no longer be tethered by the rules and regulations of social sites which means they are free to send out notifications as often as they please. Another big change will be the credit system. If Zynga disconnects from Facebook, users will have to buy Zynga money instead of Facebook credits.
This social network is two years in the making so the launch later this year is sure to turn some heads. It will be interesting to see how their relationship with Facebook fares throughout this process and if gamers will be happy with the changes that are eminent. Do you think Zynga’s value will increase if they distance themselves from Facebook?