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终于忍不住也想来谈谈微信。其实我个人对在一片喧闹中贡献两笔噪音的事情疏无兴趣,更无意于争鸣些什么,此次例外,有两个理由:一是出于对微信的喜爱,从产品人的角度,这绝对是一款值得学习揣摩并获益匪浅的产品;从用户的角度,它也绝对当得起“好用”、“有趣”的评价。第二点,则是出于心中一个大大的问号,即所谓移动互联网的平台级产品,其产品功能的边界究竟在哪里?

现在看业内关于微信的分析文章,概括一下无非是『微信要做平台,微信是腾讯在移动互联网企业战略中极为重要的一环,微信是 Allen Zhang 的但更是 Pony Ma 的…』OK,这些我们都明白。不过作为一款由近年来光芒最盛的产品人掌舵的产品,不妨回到产品价值的原点问问大家,你们现在是怎么使用微信的?

粗略地想了一下,从用户需求实现的角度来看,微信现在可以作为:

1.熟人间的通讯工具

2.熟人社交平台(朋友圈)

3.陌生人交友(附近的人,摇一摇)

4.资讯订阅(公众帐号中的媒体帐号)

5.线下商家会员卡(公众帐号中的商家帐号+背后的CRM系统)

6.名人(包括但不限于明星)信息订阅、互动(名人公众帐号)

7.app平台,实现I/O类app的核心功能流程(应用开放平台)

以上种种,虽然实现的方式可能类似,但背后的需求毕竟千差万别。以我个人的使用情况为例:

高频使用的功能:熟人通讯(没啥好说的);资讯订阅(关注了一些IT媒体,现在每天上下班时间都会打开看看推送的精华内容,其中也不乏优秀的个人媒体,比如 @Fenng 老师的“小道消息”)

低频但会使用的功能:商家会员卡(其实主动因还是源于个人从业经历…);名人信息订阅(完全出于个人恶趣味,比如听听 @叫兽易小星 老师贱贱的声音)

由于各种原因用不起来的功能:朋友圈(这个我真的很好奇想做个调查,因为从身边朋友的情况来看,用或不用两极分化非常严重);陌生人交友(咳咳..);app平台(稍后详细论述)

如果一款产品,你需要跟别人通信时回想起它,需要分享自己生活时会想起它,需要浏览资讯时会想起它,吃饭结帐需要会员卡打折时回想起它,想了解自己偶像的动态时回想起他,约炮时会想起它,以及需要订外卖、订酒店、购物、查药品信息等等等等时依然会想起它…等等,你真的会想起它吗?

真的比别人更好?微信应用平台 vs App Store+独立 app

要让用户在需要时想到你而非别人,最重要的是你在一定程度上能够更好地解决用户需求。让我们先来看看推出时间最晚但野心也是最大的微信应用平台,究竟能在多大程度比 App Store+独立 app 产品更好地解决用户在移动场景下使用 app 的需求?

app 获取成本:使用的前提是知道有这么个东西,在 App Store 的解决方案中,最难的部分并非下载应用时带来的那点流量,而是如何让用户知道有你这个应用存在正好能解决他的问题,所以才会有千奇百怪的推广渠道和营销方案。这一点,微信的应用平台并没有带来什么体验提升。搜索、扫码,无论对象是app还是应用公众帐号,都是如此。即使未来提供分类、榜单,也无法跳出应用市场既定的框框。

app 查找成本:当用户需要某个应用时,如何让他快速找到?在独立app的解决方案中,用户要找到相应应用,需要通过操作系统的桌面。用户可以自行决定应用摆放顺序,并进行归类。对于微信应用平台而言,虽然近期的改版中已经把app帐号从繁杂的联系人列表中提了出来单独作为二级分类,但是相比自定义排序和归类的桌面,还是逊色不少。

app 使用成本:虽然微信提供的框架几乎适用与所有 I/O 类产品(即用户进行信息输入,返回需要的信息,如根据位置查餐馆,根据类别查购物信息等),而且确实这类产品的核心流程都可以搬到微信里,但问题是如果这个应用我经常用,为什么不直接下载使用?不仅可以获得更完整的体验,而且不需要经过桌面——微信——联系人——应用列表——应用的漫长路径。如果这个应用我不常用,那它已经卡死在前两步了,我的需求产生后,难道需要先想一想这个需求是不是 I/O 类产品能解决的,然后再想想我的微信应用里有没有这种应用,然后再经过上述的路径去使用它吗?

彼此打架的功能 联系人消息 vs 公众帐号消息

即便有些功能确实能做得比别人好(比如公众媒体推送的消息,由于推送限制,信息的有效性大为提高),但一个产品承载的功能太多,难免有相互大家,彼此削弱对方价值的时候。以联系人消息与公众好帐号消息的推送为例,@白鸦 老师的文章《微信不能承受之“轻”》中有详细的论述。简言之,为了保证公众帐号的消息推送不影响联系人消息推送的体验,公众帐号的消息被限制为只有打开微信应用才能收到提醒(否则用户一天的生活会被多少桌面提醒打断);但同时,为了保证公众帐号推送的效果,又不得不把公众号和联系人的消息放在一起,而不是单独放一个tab(否则转化率将大大降低)。

这个策略是一个非常典型的权宜策略,双方各打50大板,但把两个层级的信息放在一起,终究不是一个完美的方案。一款产品承载的功能越多,这样需要平衡和权宜的东西也会越多,彼此的干扰和争夺带来的问题,也就越显著。而更重要的是,当微信在功能越来越多越来越重的的道路上前进时,是否还会有人停下来思考这样的权宜策略呢?

最终的对手 平台化的微信vs用户习惯

@张鹏 老师在《微信的边界》一文中提到,“微信在国内已经没有产品上的对手,但其平台化却有一个强大的对手——那就是’用户习惯’”,对此深表认同。相比PC,移动终端的小屏幕带来了用户注意力更为专注的优势同时,也带来了在一个产品中实现多功能、多任务的巨大难度。在尺寸见方的领域里,专注地解决一类需求、做好一件事,似乎已经成为移动场景下产品设计的趋势和法则。以 LBS 领域的平台产品为例,近来大众点评在主客户端之外推出了团购、周边快查(便民类poi)等独立应用,百度地图也相继推出路况、公交、身边指南(类似大众点评)等独立产品。这些在平台化道路上雄心勃勃的产品,不约而同地开始化整为零,不得不说是个值得关注的现象。而即使是在 PC 时代,QQ 从一个 IM 应用发端成就的庞大帝国,也是以邮箱、游戏、音乐、门户、空间(Qzone)等独立的产品形态存在的,QQ在背后输出了巨大的用户基数优势与关系链沉淀,但自始至终都没有以挂满枝丫的姿态站在前台。当需求的区隔达到一定程度,独立产品的形态便开始产生,从这个意义上说,通讯、交友、社交尚且属于彼此关联相对紧密的需求,而资讯、优惠、甚至于更宽泛的应用平台,虽则实现的形式有共通之处,但从需求的角度来说,终归离得很远。在巨大的用户习惯面前,平台化的尝试何时会触碰到它坚实的边界?

行文终了,不禁想起前一阵子在互联网尤其是产品经理圈子里流传甚广的张小龙“秘籍心法”,其中关于“打通”、“整合”的精辟论断依然历历在目。而今天的微信,似乎正在相反的道路上飞驰。微信的启动界面上那个巨大月亮背景下孤单的人影,也似乎显得与平台化的雄心越来越格格不入。我始终相信,移动互联网会诞生一些体量巨大的平台级产品,但是平台的边界在哪里,这或许是一个需要深入思考与时间沉淀的问题。未来如何没有人会知道,现在任何的断言都显得草率而武断,仍然祝愿微信能走出一条适合自己的平台化路径,成就一个移动互联网时代的伟大产品。

作者:舒无戏


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