Yesterday, NBC aired one of Mark Zuckerberg’s first interviews since Facebook, Inc. (NASDAQ:FB) went public, coinciding with Facebook reaching the one billion user milestone. He was interviewed for NBC by Matt Lauer. Different versions of the interview can be found here and here.
Note: The following was taken from two separate edits of the interview (see links above) and may differ from the version you may have seen.
As to reaching a billion users, Zuckerberg used words like “amazing”, “unbelievable” and “incredible”. When asked about the demographics of new users, he directed the conversation to the large number of mobile users (he claimed 600 million). Mobile is often cited by pundits as being a major Facebook weak point, but Zuckerberg said mobile was going to be a big focus and big opportunity over the next few years.
Lauer also focused on about perceived problems with the company, asking Zuckerberg questions like if Facebook be better off getting a more experienced CEO to run the company while he (Zuckerberg) developed products. And is being the CEO of Facebook like learning to fly while in the cockpit of a 747 with passengers in the plane. Zuckerberg responded that for Facebook, building the product and services, and building the business, go hand in hand.
As to comparisons with Apple, Zuckerberg noted that he in many ways models himself after Steve Jobs: that Jobs was focused, for him (Jobs) the user experience “was the main thing that mattered, the only thing that mattered” and “there is a lot that every company can learn from that”.
As to the new iPhone 5, Zuckerberg said that he personally used the new iPhone along with other platforms. He noted that more mobile Facebook users probably used Android devices – and even more just used mobile web on a browser. Facebook builds for all of these platforms.
As to morale, Zuckerberg said that people at Facebook are focused on what they are doing, and not so much on any negative media commentary.
The next topic was media exposure. Lauer noted that after Zuckerberg’s appearance at TechCrunch, FB went up 7% the next day. Maybe more exposure, say participating in “Dancing with the Stars” or a reality show would help Facebook. (Yes, Lauer really said that on national TV.)
Zuckerberg said he really only wants to talk when he has something to say, that being in the press all the time “was not us”. As to his personal life making front page news, he said it was just odd and surprising.
And then the comment that seems to be receiving most of the attention. As someone who tries to keep things simple, Zuckerberg said that wears the same thing every day and has 20 of same tee-shirt. For his clothes he only needs one drawer “like men everywhere”.
And finally, Zuckerberg loves what he’s doing, it’s his life mission.