A new study detailing the likelihood of referrals and purchases from Facebook fans and Twitter followers has revealed, perhaps unsurprisingly so, that fans and followers are a brand’s best friends. The study explains that 60% of Facebook fans and a whopping 79% of Twitter followers are more likely to recommend a brand or brands after becoming a fan or follower. Furthermore 51% of Facebook fans and 67% of Twitter followers are more likely to purchase products or services offered by a brand after becoming a fan or follower.
New meaning to “brand loyalty”
Skeptics of the lasting impact or advantage of a brand maintaining its presence on Facebook or Twitter may insert their feet into their mouths now. The simple act of clicking “become a fan” or “follow” is likely not the sole reason these brand loyalists are recommending or purchasing from a brand. Still, the regular interaction with and updates from their brand of choice remain influential in their decisions to recommend or purchase. In some ways, a person’s news feed is the ultimate location to stage a marketing campaign, as updates are mixed between posts from a user’s friends, subliminally asserting that this brand itself is a friend.
The end of the email era?
If critics still need convincing, they need only look at the frequency with which Facebook users are logging onto the social network. The raw numbers of daily log-ins were detailed in a previous post, but they, nonetheless, indicate that almost half of Facebook’s user-verse (universe reference, anyone?) logs in each day, most times more than once, ensuring that an update or promotion is not left unnoticed. Furthermore, a recent article in the Wall Street Journal announced the “End of the Email Era,” positing Facebook messages had replaced emails, citing a study by Prompt Communications. In the study, 96% of respondents claimed to use Facebook messages as a means of communication, with only 91% of respondents admitting the same for email.
Just like video killed the radio star, Facebook messages have killed the email. Armed with the knowledge that radio remains a viable means of mass communication, we know that death is not quite as final as the Buggles suggested. Nonetheless, as medium replaces medium, the broad encompassing tool of email has been edged out in sheer usage by its cousin, the Facebook message. The question remains over the qualitative differences between these media, as almost certainly deeper conversations and more information can be exchanged via email than Facebook message. That being said, it is becoming increasingly clear, given the frequency with which the social network is utilized by everyday people and the inherent loyalty of fans and followers, that social networks are and will remain a crucial arena for marketing campaigns.