Facebook Planning TikTok-Inspired Redesign: Report

According to The Verge, Meta is planning a major TikTok-inspired overhaul for its flagship social media platform, Facebook.

Executives started drawing up plans for a comprehensive rework of Facebook after recognizing the Chinese video-first platform TikTok as a competitive threat. In an April memo Facebook head Tom Alison detailed the social media site’s future direction for employees.

“The risk for us is that we dismiss this as being not valuable to people as a form of social communication and connection and we fail to evolve,” Alison warned employees in the memo.

Alison’s memo implored workers to reimagine Facebook as a “discovery engine,” a phrase also mentioned as a top priority by Meta CEO Mark Zuckerberg during the company’s latest earnings call with investors.

According to the memo, Facebook’s four “strategic pillars” are to help people:

  • Find, enjoy and create interesting content.
  • Strengthen their relationships.
  • Create communities – both big and small.
  • Realize economic opportunities.

Alison’s memo goes on to outline the following as near-term priorities for Facebook:

  • Make Reels successful.
  • Build world class recommendations technology.
  • Unlock messaging-based sharing.

“I think the thing we probably didn’t fully embrace or see is how social this format could be,” Alison told The Verge‘s Alex Heath in an interview after the memo surfaced.

Current plans for the Facebook facelift have the main “Home” or “Feed” tab turning into a mix of Reels, which launched in Canada earlier this year, and Stories at the top, followed by posts recommended by the platform’s discovery engine from both Facebook and Instagram.

Meta plans to make Facebook’s feed a more visual, video-heavy experience with clearer prompts to share posts with friends via direct messages. To that end, the redesign will also fold Messenger back into the Facebook app.

This isn’t the first time Meta has considered undoing the Facebook-Messenger split. The thought behind it this time is to adopt a greater focus on the “social” and “communicative” aspect of social media. Post-update, a user’s Messenger inbox will find itself back in the top-right corner of the main Facebook app.

Meta currently finds itself in a precarious position where it’s being forced to play catch-up on all of its platforms. TikTok is gaining ground while Facebook is bleeding users, and Meta has missed several quarterly revenue expectations.

The social media giant’s ads business has also taken a massive hit as of late, with Apple’s new privacy rules set to cost Facebook another $10 billion in ad revenue this year. Meta management is scrambling to regain investor confidence in its platforms and vision for the metaverse, and Facebook appears to be in most immediate need of revitalization to better compete against TikTok.