The Effect of Facebook on Consumer Learning
By Kenneth Ford
In order to successfully market today, you must understand consumer behavoir. Today’s marketer
should always be curious as to what excites motivates or triggers your consumers buying impulses, for
either your products or those of your competitor. There are several factors that will determine the sales
conversion ratio for your product, depending on the buying and consumption cycles of your product.
Toward Proper Learning
When your customer understands his own needs, and becomes convinced that your product will satisfy
that need reliably, a successful sale happens. These steps happen through the process of learning.
Therefore, as a marketer ensuring that the customer perceives his need, and more importantly finds his
solution in your product, is your primary job focus.
Proper Learning and Proper Conversations
Right now, you are likely reading this article on your desktop or laptop computer. Recall the day you
decided to buy your first computer. There were many factors to consider before identifying which one
to buy. A buyer’s sphere of reference, is one of the primary decision points for any purchase. It is
natural for a buyer, to have conversations with their informed friends to determine which brands
provide the best performance, for the price. A good reference from a trusted confidant will aid in the
The Role of Facebook in the Process?
Current Research demonstrates that buyers do a lot of research online, prior to making a purchase
decision. Worldwide, customers have realized that the power of the internet is of great value in
purchase decision making.
The dynamics of consumer behaviour, spheres of influence, learning and buyng decisions are the same
today as before the internet. However the peed at which the process occurs has increased dramatically.
The barriers in global communication have been removed through technology. The internet as a mode
of communication and information resource has changed through the development of social
Networling, and particularly via the rising popularity of Facebook.
Marketing Before and Since Facebook:
As we discussed in the first post on this product, most of the marketing efforts before the internet were
based on ad campaigns on the Television, with radio and print media included in the program.During
this period when conventional media dominated marketing, these programs were driven by the power
of broadcast and print, a unilateral arrangement.The phrase “the best form of advertising is word of
mouth” was born in this pre internet phase, where conversations began and ended in small groups of
Today a visit to a Facebook fan page, on your favorite brand, will reveal many comments about the
brand, reflecting both positive and negative experiences with the product. Facebook allows documented
conversations, that are easily accessible through Social Network sites, unlike the private brand gossip,
of the begining of the electronic media age.
Marketers who fail to realize the power of social networking as a medium, will find themselves
unaware of their surroundings, and unable to see their own product from their markets perspective. The
brand image is readily discernable these days, through the conversations or lack thereof, on their fan
pages. If the conversation about a brand is negative, sales will be impacted.
THe Effect On Online Reputation:
The result of the Fan Page conversations on Facebook, has created a word of mouth conversation of
geometric proportions, extending the scope far beyond the old sphere of influence. Anyone who uses
Facebook is free to publish his views on your products, as these conversations appear in searches they
influence a greater audience on a brand’s image. Obviously, reputation, on a widely accepted medium
like Facebook, is key, due to the viral nature of the conversation.
Expanding your reach in a positive manner, is far more important than that experienced in conventional
medi. Social Networking sites, Like facebook demand a unique approach. Facebook maintains each
conversation, pertaining to a particular brand, making it available through the search option, for anyone
seeking information on your particular brand.
It has become critical for any brand to portray a positive image on the social networking sites,
particularly Facebook, with its 500 million active members, nearly a third of all those active on line
worldwide. The Social Networking manager, is a growing profession, that has emerged in the new era,
to enable positive image control under the new paradigm. To ensure your brand isn’t left behind, Get
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