Many businesses of differing sizes have chosen to utilize Facebook in order to enhance their brand image, and to extend their brand reach. These brands are primarily concerned with amassing the highest total possible number of fans via “likes.” Brands need to become more conscious of the importance that friends of their fans possess.
According to a new report published by comScore and Facebook, brands conducting Facebook marketing can experience huge benefits by targeting friends of their Facebook fans. A few Facebook stats for you to consider:
• Facebook users spend 27% of time browsing homepage newsfeeds.
• Microsoft Bing’s fan base is 1.7 million; the number of friends of fans in the network is 232 million; this is more than 130 times the size of their fan base!
• For every fan of a top 100 brand, an additional 34 friends of fans can be reached due to exposure to the fan.
The number of friends of fans reached by brand impressions via friends of fans surpasses the reach of fans alone. In the case of companies such as Starbucks and Bing, the amount is nearly double. Southwest Airlines, for example, experiences 25% more impressions from friends of fans. These are just a few instances of companies extending their brand reach through friends of their fans.
The Facebook Newsfeed is a vital aspect of the social media platform for brand content consumption. In May 2011, users spent more than a quarter of their time interacting with the Facebook newsfeed. This activity comprised 4% of all time spent online in the United States during that period. Facebook users are 40-150 times more likely to consume branded content in their newsfeed than to actually visit a company’s fan page.
The difference existing between consumption of branded content in the newsfeed versus the brand page can be exemplified by a comparison of the page views on fan pages to the total number of brand exposures on Facebook. A large majority of the users’ time is spent on the newsfeed, rather than individual profile pages. The branded content impressions are an accurate portrayal of that reality. However, the dominance of consumption in the newsfeed over that of the brand page still shows that a marginal number of fans view content from a brand in a given week.
On average, 16% of fans are reached by branded content in a given week according to Facebook analysis. This is due to the fact that some fans miss content if they are not logged fin during periods when brands are most active. Brands must focus on creating content that their fans would be inclined to share. This fan sharing will then result in their postings becoming increasingly visible to friends of fans via the newsfeed, and will ultimately aid in further extending their brand reach.