Facebook fosters brand interaction and awareness, according to a Lab42 survey, but “liking” a brand’s page by no means indicates consumer intent to buy. Marketers claimed that they have acknowledged this behavior and have adapted their Facebook pages to focus on brand awareness without expecting immediate results.
The survey questioned respondents about why they “like” brands on Facebook and what they expect to come from interaction. According to the results, 50 percent of Facebook users who “like” brands argue that the brand’s Facebook page is more effective than the company website. However, further survey findings reveal that 46 percent of users “like” a brand with no intention of buying, 52 percent want a free item, and 24 percent “like” to help a friend.
Findings from an Ad Age and Citigroup study found that marketers understand this behavior and the majority do not try to use Facebook for purposes of lead generation. According to the study, roughly 46 of marketers list building awareness and sentiment for their brands as their top goal in Facebook ads, followed by driving traffic at 17.6 percent, as well as a small margin of other goals such as building fans or “likes,” staying in touch with customers, and generating sales leads and social commerce. Debra Aho Williamson, principal analyst at eMarketer, said, “I think what you’re seeing now is an evolution; now we have these fans and we have to figure out what to do with them.”
Facebook has been urging marketers to focus less on metrics such as click-through rates and more on reach and “resonance,” claims Ad Age. Based on the responses from marketers, it appears many have begun taking this approach through brand awareness without expecting a high number of “likes” to generate sales.