The Facebook Factor
The research firm Forrester has conducted a study to help marketers recognize the potential of Facebook and understand the influence of a Facebook fan. Statistical modeling was used to evaluate Facebook’s effect on the likelihood of a fan to purchase, consider, or recommend the brand.
To test this “Facebook Factor”, four simple questions were used to determine if respondents were Facebook fans of the brand, and then to determine their engagement based on purchasing, consideration, and their likelihood of recommending it to others.
Results show that Facebook fans are in fact more likely to purchase, consider, and recommend brands, and that (by far) the greatest value lies in fans’ willingness to recommend to friends and family:
"Having a Facebook fan base of brand advocates is powerful—and a brand’s Facebook page provides an excellent channel for influencers to spread positive word-of-mouth buzz. Marketers can analyze their Facebook fan profiles and actively target them to promote the brand to others (see Figure 5)."
A great question Forrester’s study poses is whether consumers are buying the brand as a result of their Facebook engagement, or if brand enthusiasts are engaging with the brand because they are already avid customers. In analyzing the data, its clear that the fans of Facebook brand pages have great impact, however companies should not limit their focus by devoting all attention and money to simply garnering Facebook fans without proper research. Every company should maximize effectiveness by testing out the modeling for their particular brand early on, analyzing results, and profiling/targeting their Facebook fans accordingly.
"Facebook is a great channel for consumers to engage with companies—and for companies to engage with customers."
Facebook is a great place to reinforce the customer life cycle. It is not only an avenue to advertise new products and features for brands, but also provides a place for brand advocates and fans to share their experiences. And Facebook makes it easy to highlight and promote brand advocates with little cost. To keep fans and brand advocates engaged and attract new fans, marketers should remember to always create social content that keeps the conversation going, that drives engagement and response while maintaining the brand strategy.
To view the Facebook Factor report in greater detail, click here.