What's The Value Of A Like?
What’s the value of a like?
It almost sounds like a philosophical question.
For brands around the world who spent $31 Billion dollars on social media campaigns, the matter is perplexing to their wallets.
For us digital marketers who ride an emotional roller coaster of page like increases and decreases, we can’t help but to ask if our jobs will ever bring value to the world.
Let us backtrack.
An influential 2012 study by comScore and Facebook found that compared to the general population, people who liked Starbucks’ Facebook page spent 8% more and transacted 11% more frequently over the course of a month. Similarly, people who liked the Target Facebook page were 19% more likely than the control group to purchase at Target. These studies, like many others, have found that fans of a page do, in general, spend more than non-fans.
What a win for social media marketing it was! <---Jumping to conclusions à la President Trump
Unfortunately, these studies concluded prematurely: confusing cause and consequence.
It is possible that exposing your brand through page like ads can lead to certain increases in sales. But it is also likely that people who decide to like your page simply have more affinity to your brand in the first place, prompting more purchases.
To help answer this question, the Harvard Business Review conducted a study to test the effects of following a brand and of your friends following a brand on purchases. Across 16 studies, they found no evidence that following a brand on social media alone changes people’s buying behaviour.
This points back to the viewpoint that page likes are a vanity metric. At best, they provide a “social nod” of sorts; suggesting that since X amount of people liked this page, maybe it’s worth your like too.
The Harvard study can be disappointing for some. However it brought a confirmation to our theory that page likes are akin to potential energy being held in an object. None of the energy is valorized until it is pushed to release it as kinetic energy.
So how can you unlock the power of likes into kinetic energy?
Curating a social media community around your product is a great thing, but without pushing your fans to engage through ads, you will have difficulty putting a dollar value on that community.
Of course, not every brand’s goal of pursuing a social media presence is sales, which would lead to measuring different markers of success. But if you are looking to get dollar value out of your Facebook fans, do know that a paid push strategy is needed.
So how can you pull value from your page likes via advertisement?
Let’s take our client, NIUCOCO. They sell a line of vegan, organic, luxury hair care and currently has 11K page likes. That database alone can now give you two new lead generating audiences.
1. Lookalike audiences
Finding people who have similar interests as my page fans. This allows advertisers to effectively double the potential reach of their advertisements by targeting new customers who exhibit the same interests and consumer behavior as their existing customers.
2. Friends of Fans
Finding people who are friends of your page fans. This allows advertisers to extract value from your fans’ friend circles and effectively harness the blow horn effect in social media to amplify your message.
But it doesn’t stop there! The granular targeting options of Facebook allows you to deliver your ads to very specific audiences.
Well you can go from audience A:
English-speaking lookalike of NIUCOCO page fans who live in a 10 mile radius of Montreal between the ages of 23-30.
To audience B:
English-speaking lookalike of NIUCOCO page fans who live in a 10 mile radius of Montreal between the ages of 23-30, who like the page “Wellness Mama,” and who work in public accounting at a small business raising toddlers ages 0-2.
To audience C:
English-speaking lookalike of NIUCOCO page fans who live in a 10 mile radius of Montreal between the ages of 23-30, who like the page “Wellness Mama,” and who work in public accounting at a small business raising toddlers ages 0-2, who have friends with an upcoming birthday, who have college degrees from UCLA, and who travel internationally frequently.
The layers go on and on, and these targeting capabilities are by no means exhaustive. But the moral of the story is that we got to these specific, relevant targets from page likes and were able to test various ads and track conversions; effectively increasing our reach in new customer segments all while improving sales.
With over 1.49 billion active monthly users on Facebook, it’s critical for marketers to get granular when targeting, and avoid wasting spend on people who are out of market.
At Amuse, we’ve achieved up to 20x return on ad spend with costs per result as low as $0.15.
Interested? Talk to us and let’s see how we can amuse you.