As a guy that has been in the digital marketing space for 20 years, I’ll admit that it was at first difficult to believe that social media marketing is that much different than all other forms of online advertising. Understanding how it is different, and thus measuring its value, however, is a discussion that is top of mind for all forward-thinking marketers and should be for many reasons.
With Facebook’s new Page Insights launch last week smart marketers will now become even wiser with more insights than ever before on how to reach more people on Facebook with their message, as well as create more opportunities to “go viral.” I’ll explain further what I mean.
There are multiple ways that people interact with a brand on Facebook. They visit a brand’s page, check-in, but most often interact by seeing news about the brand in their personal news feed. In fact, users are 40- to150-times more likely to consume branded content in the news feed than to visit the fan page itself. These conversations happening in the news feed present a big opportunity for brands to reach more than just their fans – but also friends of those fans, which is an important step in increasing awareness, acquiring new customers, and most importantly, driving sales.
According to a recent comScore white paper, friends of fans typically represent a much larger set of consumers than a brand’s fans — 34 times larger, on average, for the top 100 fan Pages, and 81 times larger for the top 1000 fan pages. Friends of fans also are much more likely than the average consumer to visit a store, website, and even purchase a product or service. For example, Starbucks fans as well as friends of fans spend 8% more in stores and engage in 11% more transactions than the average online consumer.