Why Facebook Provides the Perfect Social Barometer for Consumer Attitudes

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What are Facebook “Likes” worth to your marketing research? Companies spend thousands of dollars to build their Facebook following. A recent news report says that the U.S. State Department spent more than $630,000 to increase the number of Facebook Likes; at 424,000 “Likes” for the State Department’s Facebook page that translates to about $1.50 spent per follower.

So now that you’ve made the investment to generate all these fans, how can you make them more valuable? Simply attracting fans doesn’t mean those fans have value. Every Facebook Like doesn’t mean you have an active fan, ready to spread the word about our company or brand. How can you maximize your return from Facebook fans? By using them for market research.

You need to convert social activity into social data. Mining the activity and interests of Facebook tells you a lot about who they are and what they are interested in. When you look at the social data, social media channels like Facebook deliver real insight about consumer attitudes and actions. And the larger the pool of fans, the more accurate the insight.

Consider that Facebook currently has more than 1.11 billion active users each month. Then consider that one out of four people in the world use social media, spending on average 15 hours per month online. What would be the research value of knowing more about these Facebook users from their online activities, their likes, their brand preferences, and more?Facebook Likes

You need to move beyond the social graph to mine the interest graph; it’s not just about who your fans are connected to, but what they like - what shows they watch, what sports they prefer, what brands they follow. The interest graph tells you more about your customers and how to reach them, and gives you insight about your competitors’ customers. The interest graph can show you how to turn fans into consumers of your brand.

And Facebook is the ultimate platform to demonstrate the interest graph. In fact, because Facebook gives you a huge sampling of consumers who actually volunteer information about themselves, their likes and dislikes; it provides a much greater sampling than you can get from any survey or focus group. And the research findings are highly predictable; social media interests give you an exact picture of an individual’s demographic profile, psychographics, and likes and dislikes with a 95 percent accuracy rating. On Facebook, you are what you like. And given the number of its users, Facebook is truly representative of your customer base, no matter what your market. Research shows that 78 percent of people who “Like” your brand will buy your products.

CubeYou has created a unique predictive tool that helps marketers mine Facebook to get answers to any number of marketing questions, such as:

  • Who are your Facebook fans following?
  • What topics are your fans interested in?
  • What are your most valuable customer segments?
  • What are their favorite brands?
  • How do their attitudes compare to the industry at large and your competitors in particular?
  • What are the best channels to reach consumers who want to hear about your brand?

So while marketers should continue to build social media campaigns to increase their online presence and add more Facebook fans, they shouldn’t stop there. Facebook offers a wealth of social data to populate the interest graph that gives you a three-dimensional portrait of your customer base; who they are, where they look for information, and what products they want and what brands they follow. If you are looking for actionable insight to inform your next marketing campaign, then Facebook is a great place to start.

Want to see how social data can benefit your marketing campaign? Download our sample report.