Real Social Media Research

Should you put up a Facebook page for your organization? Is it worth it? Well, that depends on a lot of factors, but the answer is YES.

Nielsen and Facebook presented a joint study at ad:tech San Francisco 2010, entitled “Advertising Effectiveness: Understanding the Value of a Social Media Impression.”

The study was based on opt-in polls of more than 800,000 users on Facebook pages, using Nielsen’s BrandLift research methodology to measure consumer attitudes on more than 125 ad campaigns. It found that ads with social media context, defined as “lightweight endorsements from friends displayed within the ad units,” increased ad recall by 1.6 times that of ads without the endorsements; increased brand awareness by 2.0 times; and increased purchase intent by an unspecified amount.

Get a copy of the report here.  It proves an integrated approach among all media — paid, earned and social — can work hand-in-hand in generating the kind of brand awareness we marketers strive for. The study has implications beyond Facebook.

Another study, released as a free eBook by Shabbir Imber Safdar and Shayna Englin, gets into real detail from a non-profit’s persepective. “Is Your Nonprofit Facebook Page Worth It?” uses a real world example, the U.S. Fund for UNICEF.

Nonprofits need to answer a few simple questions to justify the time and expense they’re investing into maintaining a presence on Facebook:

  1. How effective is the work I do on Facebook in producing bottom line results for the organization?
  2. What should I be doing differently on Facebook to improve my results?
  3. Should I take resources away from Facebook and devote them to something else?

Unless you can answer these questions, Facebook will become yet another unproven checklist task you must do without justification because “everybody else is there”.

Both are worth reading.

Oh, and the image at the top of this post was used to produce this spot for the Palm Pre last year…

The Drumbeat of Social Media

Bet you can’t help but hear the drums of social media. If you’re in marketing, you’d better get used to it.  The drumbeats are getting louder and louder.  Can you keep a beat?

Seems many are getting it, with “social networks/applications” a top priority for top marketers, according to a study released by the Society of Digital Agencies, released last month…

Social Media is propelling the rise of the Consumer:

“Rather than spending another misguided year trying to “engineer” viral campaigns that will propagate themselves, regardless of consumer intentions, it’s time to refocus our marketing efforts to align with the way that people actually behave.” – Ivan Askwith, Big Spaceship

“2010 will be the year that social media-fueled technology and behavior is responsible for more content consumption choices than ever before. As the media landscape becomes increasingly fragmented, marketers will need to become more nimble than ever, and start getting on the leading edge of trends, as opposed to waiting for them to emerge.” – Ian Schafer, Deep Focus

“The most effective digital platforms have shifted from “disruptive” to “productive” by providing a service or utility…[They] fundamentally change the approach from “how we reach our customers” to “how we make their lives better.” – Ken Martin, Chief Creative Officer, and Ivan Todorov, CEO & CTO, Blitz

81% of brand executives expect an increase in digital projects in 2010, so it’s no surprise words like “social media” are included in almost every communicator’s job description. If not, it should be.

Social media gives marketers an alternate,  better way to communicate and interact with their customers, prospects and various publics (employees, investors, vendors and communities where they operate). This has become the norm for many successful companies and organizations. Some are doing it right, while others start, for example, a Twitter feed or a Facebook page and fail to update it consistently.

Thousands more have yet to realize the benefits, so I’d say the outlook for us “drummers” is indeed very interesting and exciting. What does every good band need? A drummer!

Boom-boom-boom.