Monday, August 02, 2010

The 8 Success Criteria For Facebook Page Marketing

Executive Summary

Brands are jumping on the Facebook bandwagon to reach customers. The Society of Digital Agencies reports that more than 45% of senior marketers worldwide named social networks and applications their top priority for 2010. Yet despite the urgency, most brands lack a strategy. Altimeter Group conducted research, and gleaned input from 34 vendors, agencies, and experts, to determine success criteria and develop a roadmap for Facebook page best practices. We found Eight Success Criteria for Facebook page marketing, and then tested the maturity of 30 top brands across six industries.

Our heuristic evaluation revealed that brands fell short half of the brands we reviewed (14 out of 30) did not fully leverage social features to activate word of mouth, the hallmark behavior of social networks. Within this immature landscape, a few brands were on the right track to successfully harnessing Facebook page marketing. Brands like Pampers, Macy's, Kohl's, and AXE increased engagement and activated word of mouth through advocacy and peer-to-peer interactions, or solicited business call to actions that result in transactions. Brands need to stop experimenting in Facebook on their own customers. The criteria and findings in this report provide brands with a roadmap towards Facebook page marketing success.

Facebook: A Platform Marketers Cannot Ignore
Consumers are adopting Facebook at staggering levels. Facebook touts a staggering 500 million users worldwide. Engagement is ripe, with 50% of active users logging on in any given day, connecting to an average of 130 friends.3 Average internet users are spending more time on Facebook per day than on Google, Yahoo, YouTube, Microsoft, Wikipedia and Amazon combined. The attention of consumers has shifted marketers must take action. Consumers lean on each other to make decisions bypassing brands. Consumers trust their friends and family more than other sources of information about products and services, according to a Nielsen study. Another study reports that 60% of Facebook users are more likely to recommend a brand after becoming a fan (Chadwick Martin Bailey). As consumers make decisions directly with each other on Facebook, brands are left out of the mix. Confused, brands need a roadmap or risk experimenting on their own customers. Seventy percent of brands indicate that they planned to increase spending on offsite social media investment, including Facebook in 2010, according to an eConsultancy study.

Yet despite the urgency, brands lack a pragmatic approach. Rather than spin their wheels and waste resources experimenting on customers, brands need guidelines for Facebook page marketing success.

The full report is embedded below and contains references to Nielsen and other relevant survey statistics.