Corporate Eye

6 in 10 Facebook Users Talk About Products

facebook signFacebook is still the top social site that consumers use to talk about products and share information about products with their followers. According to research from 8thBridge, 63% of  the study respondents reported that they talked about products on Facebook while 25% talk about products on Twitter and 22% do so on Pinterest. Just 31% claimed that they did not share information about products on social networks.

Before you get too excited by this data, it’s important to point out that the study respondents were all Facebook users, so it’s safe to assume that these results are skewed toward Facebook rather than other social sites. However, there is an important piece of information to take away from the study results. People are talking about products on Facebook — a lot — and those conversations are gold mines for brands that track and leverage them for direct and indirect marketing purposes.

These product conversations are happening among friends, family, and acquaintances on Facebook and lead to brand awareness, brand trial, repeat purchases, loyalty, and advocacy. What other form of word-of-mouth marketing is so easy to track? The question is why aren’t all brands, at least all B2C brands, doing it?

Taking a closer look at the reasons why Facebook users share product information using social networks and social media tools, approximately twice as many people did so for personal reasons as opposed to reasons created by the companies behind the products they were talking about. Here is the breakdown reported by eMarketer for the reasons study respondents claimed that they talked about products on the social web:

  1. To express tastes and preferences with friends = 38%
  2. To share a great product experience with friends = 35%
  3. To receive discounts or rewards for sharing = 30%
  4. To enter a contest or sweepstakes = 15%
  5. Don’t share products on social networks = 29%

Of course, talking about a product and offering an informal review through a Facebook post is very different from simply clicking the “like” button, and these actions should be treated as two very different things.

Image: Marcin Wichary

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Susan Gunelius is the author of 10 marketing, social media, branding, copywriting, and technology books, and she is President & CEO of KeySplash Creative, Inc., a marketing communications company. She also owns Women on Business, an award-wining blog for business women. She is a featured columnist for Entrepreneur.com and Forbes.com, and her marketing-related articles have appeared on websites such as MSNBC.com, BusinessWeek.com, TodayShow.com, and more. She has over 20 years of experience in the marketing field having spent the first decade of her career directing marketing programs for some of the largest companies in the world, including divisions of AT&T and HSBC. Today, her clients include large and small companies around the world and household brands like Citigroup, Cox Communications, Intuit, and more. Susan is frequently interviewed about marketing and branding by television, radio, print, and online media organizations, and she speaks about these topics at events around the world. You can connect with her on Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, or Google+.
 
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