Facebook, Fans and Friends: Are You Cashing In?

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In the month of January, Facebook.com hosted approximately 127,510,914 unique visitors (UVs). Of the 127.5 million UVs, just over 75 million (58.9 percent) became a fan of a page during January.

Let’s pause for a moment and consider that. In January alone, just under half of Facebook’s uniques became a fan of a page. Seventy five million fans means 75 million potential consumer connections for marketers to target. And don’t forget about the friends of those fans! Taking that into account, the number of consumers touched by a brand increases exponentially.

Even with a large and prominent brand like Target whose Facebook brand page has 3,935,900 fans, with the newer Facebook features such as Sponsored Stories, even if each of those fans had 100 friends, Target now has the opportunity to reach over 393 million consumers on Facebook.

Think about the potential impact – Compete data shows that over the past year, Facebook was remarkably successful at driving key retail activities. In fact, the rate of key performance indicators (KPIs) such as ‘add to cart’ and ‘begin checkout’ grew steadily throughout 2010, a rate that matched or, in some instances, surpassed that of search. Facebook is ultimately driving higher results for some retailers than paid search or even some organic search listings.

The good news for marketers is that Facebook is “earned” media with little to no set up costs. So if you aren’t maximizing the opportunity of your brand’s Facebook page, bringing it to the next level is a simple, cost-effective and, most important, potentially profitable marketing move you can’t afford to overlook.