What’s a Facebook Like Worth?

Facebook and comScore recently published a white paper on “How Brands Reach and Influence Fans Through Social Media Marketing.” The document is full of some pretty interesting case studies on Starbucks, Southwest and Bing, with regards to how they use their Facebook Pages to generate interest, buzz and business.

How to Measure a Like

What’s interesting to me is that we’re finally getting away from measuring ROI for social media in the terms of “this interaction = this in sales.” It’s about time. According to the white paper, Facebook fans can be valued in several ways:

  • By increasing the depth of engagement and loyalty of fans
  • By generating incremental purchase behavior
  • By influencing friends of fans

So you can see, it’s hard to put a dollar amount on any one of these values, yet they are all tremendously valuable.

facebook like

Why Friends of Fans Are Important

Another tidbit I learned from this report is the importance of friends of fans of a brand’s Facebook Page. If you’re a fan of, say, Starbucks, there’s a pretty good chance your Facebook friends might be interested in the brand as well. And brands realize this. According to Facebook, in looking at the top 100 brand Pages, they determined that for every brand’s fan, there are another 34 friends of fans that the brands can reach. So exponentially, you can reach a lot more people than just those who click “Like” on your Page.

From the report: “Starbucks’ Fans and Friends of Fans showed the highest average propensity to visit the brand website, with Fans 418 percent more likely to visit Starbucks.com and Friends of Fans 230 percent more
Getting More Eyeballs to Your Page
According to the report, for brands that post updates five days a week, an average of 16 percent of Fans are reached. It’s all about what appears in that person’s feed when they’re on Facebook. Post too rarely, and your content won’t be seen. Post too often, and you irritate people. The report suggests that to increase the likelihood of reaching your fan base, you should focus on highly relevant content that your fans will want to read and share, and to post more regularly:
A Facebook analysis suggests that each incremental day of publishing branded content from the Facebook Page increases the reach among Fans by approximately 2.5 percent.
That’s good advice any brand, small or large, can use in marketing on Facebook.  The report had some other great statistics, so I suggest you check it out for yourself.

Susan Payton Susan Payton is the Communications Manager for the Small Business Trends Awards programs. She is the President of Egg Marketing & Communications, an Internet marketing firm specializing in content marketing, social media management and press releases. She is also the Founder of How to Create a Press Release, a free resource for business owners who want to generate their own PR.

10 Reactions
  1. It’s implied by a lot of what you’re saying, but the worth of a “Like” is greatly impacted by the amount of interaction. If your brand gets a lot of comments and likes on a post, more people see you in their feeds (thanks to edge rank or whatever they call it). So you need to post things that get interaction.

  2. The only way to generate more “likes” is to get more “likes!” It’s true–the more often you post (without getting annoying), the more exposure your brand will get.

  3. @Robert–Absolutely. Having the likes doesn’t do much for you if you don’t use your page frequently.

    @Ashley–It’s the snowball effect!

  4. The “likes” on Facebook is like the degrees of separation game. By putting up great content for people to like, eventually an influencer will like your post, and all the people who follow him/her will see this. Things can go viral very quickly.

  5. Really “Likes” on Facebook Page matters, Suppose you have a brand and have five thousands of Likes on that, it means that when you are posting an update it is moving from 5,000 to 10,000 and so on and if your update is catchy then it will be a “hit” for your Business.

  6. Thanks for this article

    We get calls all the time from people trying to ‘sell’ us facebook likes because they find our page(s) without a TON of likes on them. I always try to explain why I would rather have a hand full of REAL likes vs. a bucket full of fake accounts that like my page(s)