Why I Don’t Like Your Brand on Facebook by briansolis

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Guest post by Andrew Blakeley on a Facebook experiment he recently undertook. "Find Us On Facebook", the results from which he vowed analyse offerings from various brands online.

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									Why I Don't Like Your Brand on Facebook
Guest post by Andrew Blakeley. Follow him on Twitter (for exclusive deals and offers!)




I recently undertook a simple Facebook experiment, inspired by a brief Monday morning rant from
my boss: “This morning my yoghurt told me to find it on Facebook. It didn’t tell me why, it just told me
to find it. Why on Earth would I want to find a yoghurt on Facebook? It’s a yoghurt!”

He was right, of course. As social networks slowly become the default online presence for brands to
drive their consumers to, adverts, marketing and packaging has started telling us where to go.
However, it hasn’t yet started telling us why to go there.

For my experiment – “Find Us On Facebook” – I vowed to Like every brand that asked me to for one
week. I would then blog and analyse the various offerings of each brand, in particular how they were
attempting to drive people from the offline world to the online, social, world. Here are the results:




(cc) Brian Solis, www.briansolis.com - Twitter, @briansolis
As a marketer, I found the results very disappointing. For an industry the focuses endlessly on
providing consumers with “benefits” and “reasons to believe” here was a lot of marketing asking
people to take an action, without telling them what they stood to gain from it. In 2011 it’s more or less
a given that your brand can be found on Facebook, and consumers know that. What they don’t know
is why they should bother.

What consumers want from brands in social media is a topic that has been widely written about
already, and is fairly well understood by marketers. Research from advertising agency DDB Paris
found that amongst the top reasons for Liking a brand were: “to take advantage of promotional
benefits”,” to be informed of new products offered by the brand”,” to access exclusive information”
and “to give my opinion about the brand”. Four very clear reasons to bother, which could easily be
affixed or suffixed onto any “Find us on Facebook” message for greater impact.

Another key finding was the number of brand Liking requests coming from email marketing. These
are brands that I had chosen to receive email marketing from directly into my inbox, and here they
were asking to appear in my Facebook newsfeed too. They weren’t, however, telling me why I
should open myself up to them in another channel.

Only 1 of the 16 brands provided an incentive to make the leap from email to social media. I literally
had no reason to bother with the other brands, as I was already receiving their deals and offers, and
they weren’t giving me another reason. Some brands have found interesting ways to incentivise
people to make the jump:

• Dingo, a dog food brand from Ohio, included a promotion that would only kick-in when the
Facebook page reached 5,000 fans (from a base of 300). They had an unprecedented take-up, with
fans forwarding on the email to their friends and encouraging sign-ups to get the offer. They hit the
5,000 mark in just 3 days.




(cc) Brian Solis, www.briansolis.com - Twitter, @briansolis
• Bag retailer Timbuk2 included an opportunity to win a bike, helmet and messenger bag in an email
to its 100,000 newsletter subscribers. It received 6,500 clickthroughs vs. just 9 from its generic social
call to action.

Consumers need these incentives, because they know that otherwise all they’re doing is agreeing to
be bombarded with more marketing unrewarded.

The sad thing is that some brands are actually building really fun, engaging content in these spaces,
but not making people aware of them. The Fosters beer page, for instance, is full of great exclusive
Alan Partridge content, starring Steve Coogan and written by Armando Iannucci. Their TV ad,
however, had nothing more than a Facebook URL. Had they said “for exclusive Alan Partridge
episodes” they would’ve opened their brand Facebook page up to a whole wealth of people, who felt
genuinely motivated to click Like.

My week as a social consumer left me tired and confused. It left my Facebook newsfeed so
crammed with nonsense to the point that I could scroll entire pages without seeing my friends. It left
me a bit sad for the digital marketers and agencies who were building great content that wasn’t
getting the attention it deserved. So, if you’re reading this and you work in advertising or are a brand
manager – next time you think about telling your consumers to find you on Facebook, consider
telling them why.

Artist: Natalie Dee




(cc) Brian Solis, www.briansolis.com - Twitter, @briansolis
Brian Solis is principal at Altimeter Group, a research-based advisory firm. Solis is
globally recognized as one of the most prominent thought leaders and published
authors in new media. A digital analyst, sociologist, and futurist, Solis has studied and
influenced the effects of emerging media on business, marketing, publishing, and
culture. His current book, Engage, is regarded as the industry reference guide for
businesses to build and measure success in the social web.




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(cc) Brian Solis, www.briansolis.com - Twitter, @briansolis

								
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