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What is the Value of a Facebook Fan?

Have you ever wondered what the value of a Facebook Fan is? You’re not alone.  An article which appeared on AdWeek last week has provided a calculation of its own.

The featured study showed that, on average, a fan base of 1 million translates into at least $3.6 million in equivalent media over a year. By this calculation then, each fan is worth approximately $3.60 of equivalent media, or what you would be spending on traditional advertising to expect to generate the same marketing outcome. At Wildfire we’ve seen many customers use our campaigns to build their fan bases for under $1 per fan and in some cases for just a few cents per fan. So for these clients the return on investment can be huge!

To obtain these numbers, Facebook data from a collection of large and small brand Fan Pages was analyzed, with a combined 41 million fans, and showed that on average marketers who post twice a day are able to achieve monthly impressions of around 1.5 times their number of fans (i.e. 60 million monthly impressions yielded from a fan base of 41 million fans). An “impression” is the equivalent of one ad view and accordingly to the study an impression using paid advertising generally costs around $5 per 1000 impressions. So according to the calculations in the study, a fan page owner that has 10,000 fans and posts content to their page twice a day can expect that they’ll receive around $36,000 in ‘advertising’ value from these fans. In other words, if this fan page owner were to try to achieve the same level of exposure for her brand during the year, she’d have to spend around $36,000. Of course, not all fan pages are made equal – some achieve much higher engagement levels than others (the study found that some fan pages achieved 3.6 impressions per fan per month and others just 0.44 impressions per fan) but nevertheless the potential exists for fan bases to be highly valuable.

Of course, this study only measures impressions. Wildfire clients achieve far more than just impressions from the campaigns they run with us – they grow their fan bases, newsletter lists, Twitter followers, website impressions and even drive store visits and sales via coupons and giveaways. So for our customers, the value they get from a Wildfire campaign could well exceed the potential $3.60 value of a fan cited in the the AdWeek article.

So what does this mean for you? Well, for starters it means that all the time and effort you’re putting into building your fan base can have a quantifiable return (and a pretty significant one to boot!). It also means that the more regularly you update your fans, the more impressions you’ll likely be achieving and thus the greater the value of your fans. Of course, this can be a double-edged sword because if you ‘spam’ your fans with content that is not relevant or compelling they’ll likely opt-out of your activity streams, thus reducing your overall impressions over time. Finally, it means that the more you can do to engage your fans beyond just impressions – for example, have them sign up for your mailing list, refer your brand to friends, claim coupons etc, the greater their value will grow. Fortunately, Wildfire’s campaigns are designed to help you achieve all these goals – sweepstakes, contests, giveaways and coupons have been shown to be one of the most effective ways to not only grow a fan base but to keep them engaged and to keep them ‘looking out’ for your brands content.


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Facebook to Change Language from “Become a Fan” to “Like”

During the first week of April the news broke that Facebook was planning to change the language around Fan Pages from “Become a Fan” to “Like.” We previously posted on our blog about this to outline the change with our readers, to ensure that it is clear what changes are anticipated for your Facebook Fan Page, but wanted to re-post our explanation when the first instance of the wording change became public on some Facebook Fan Pages. On April 19 the first group of language changes were released on Facebook– not all users can see the differences yet and not all pages are different, so the change may take some time and occur in waves. We wanted you to know, first and foremost, not to worry! The change is purely in wording, and won’t affect the functionality of your Facebook Fan Pages at all.

Facebook already uses the term “Like” for users who are indicating their interest in their friends’ posts, feeds, pictures, and updates. In fact, Facebook has done research analyzing use of the “Like” function, and shown that users click the term nearly twice as often as they click to “Become a Fan” of any page. Maybe they’re like serial daters, more than happy to “like” all these brands but afraid of making the commitment of becoming a “Fan”. Facebook has stated that in changing the wording from “Become a Fan” to “Like,” they expect users to be more comfortable committing to use the word around brands and other Fan Pages. Facebook has also said that changing to “Like” from “Become a Fan” will help to streamline the site, so that users feel that indicating their interest in anything from a post to a page can be achieved in a universal language that they have already demonstrated comfort in using.


Similar to how Facebook users can declare that they “Like” Facebook newsfeeds, statuses, photos, and similar items, soon they will be able to state that they “Like” your Facebook Fan Page, instead of choosing to “Become a Fan.”


This could be great news for your Facebook Fan Page, making it easier to build your fan base, if the Facebook users are more comfortable committing to the “Like” button on your company profile over the previous “Become a Fan” button. Fans of your page can still be referred to as “Fans” but over time, the language on your Fan Page may evolve to “People who Like Us on Facebook.” Additionally, in newsfeed form, we will begin to see statements like “John Doe likes Wildfire Interactive,” instead of “John Doe became a Fan of Wildfire Interactive.” We can see, then, that the upcoming change is little more than some different language. In this way, you can expect to keep creating interesting and compelling promotions to engage with Facebook users in the same way you were before any changes were announced. When the new language does go live, our Wildfire Promotion Builder tool will be ready and configured with all the necessary wording updates. Brings a whole new meaning to the common saying, “…they like me! They really like me!”

5 Coolest Uses of Wildfire Social Media Marketing Campaigns

You may think that all social media marketing promotions are the same– after all, how creative can you really get with a coupon, or a contest, or even a sweepstakes?

The answer is: extremely. At Wildfire, we’ve seen a great many promotions run by brands big and small, everything from chocolate cake by mail to hundreds of cute babies and cuter pets. But the following five campaigns, all run by large multinational brands and companies, have been especially innovative in their approach and the interesting use of social media marketing. While these promotions have all been run by some of our large brand clients as white label campaigns, stay tuned to the Wildfire blog in the coming weeks for our similar profiling of innovative promotions run by smaller businesses!

1. President Obama Uses Social Media Marketing to Promote Foreign Relations

The U.S. Embassy in Jakarta used Wildfire to run a promotion on their Facebook Fan Page to excite Indonesian fans about President Obama’s upcoming visit to the country. Users could pick their favorite cultural foods and clothing items to suggest the President sample and wear while he is visiting and then enter a sweepstakes to win tickets to attend one of the events. After running for just short of a month, the campaign generated 12,000 sweepstakes entries and over 43,000 interactions with the promotion in general, with people choosing their favorite item in some or all three of the cultural options, and the entering the sweeps.

This was a highly creative way for the U.S. State Department to generate interest among young Indonesians in the President’s visit and the best part is that they got the campaign up and running in just over a week and with a minimal budget.

2. Jamba Juice Creates Jamba Bucks, issuing users coupons worth $1 to $10,000

Jamba Juice launched a campaign called “Feel Good Bucks” that used Wildfire’s unique coupon code generation functionality in a very interesting way. They gave out ‘lucky’ coupons via our Facebook Connect Product and Facebook Fan Page Product that could be redeemed at Jamba Juice stores. When consumers redeemed the coupons they either received $1 off their purchase or they had the opportunity to win one many thousands of instant prizes, including cash prizes of $10,000! To make Jamba’s campaign even more fun and social, they combined it with Wildfire’s Virtual Gifting solution so users could send Jamba Bucks to their friends in the form of fun, Jamba-branded virtual gifts like smoothies, bucks, and cartoons. By combining the utility of a coupon with the anticipation of an instant win and the social channels of Facebook, Jamba was able to generate huge interest in their campaign, distributing tens of thousands of coupons and driving around 95,000 consumers to redeem coupons.

3. EA Games uses Wildfire to Power the “Perfect Kill”

EA Games is encouraging fans of the popular video game Dead Space to “Design a Kill” for the game’s sequel, Dead Space 2 . Entrants can submit their visions of a perfect kill sequence and the public can vote on their favorite entries. The winning entry will be built into the Dead Space 2 game and will feature the likeness of the winner. EA Games created the promotion using Wildfire’s essay, photo, and video contest solution. By allowing for a variety of submission formats (i.e. video, photo and/or text) EA catered to a wide variety of entrants – if creating and editing a video seemed too difficult to one, they had the option to instead submit an image or a written description of their kill. Some of the entries are not for the squeamish–EA really got into the hearts and heads of their fans, some of whom acted out entire kill sequences in front of a camera, and others who even created their own CGI movies!

Screenshot of Deadspace 2 promotion on Facebook

4. Gatorade Commemorates Michael Jordans Induction into the Hall of Fame with Vote for Favorite MJ Moments

Gatorade teamed up with Wildfire to commemorate Michael Jordan’s induction into the Basketball Hall Of Fame with a campaign on the Gatorade Fan Page which allowed users to vote for their favorite MJ moment from a collection submitted by some of the industry’s top sports writers. By combining a voting campaign with a sweepstakes, Gatorade was able to get the best of both world’s — a powerful way to spread the word about their brand throughout Facebook (voters broadcast their opinion about the best Michael Jordan ‘moment’ by publishing newsfeeds and sharing with their friends) and to generate leads (sweepstakes entrants provided valuable data and contact information to Gatorade). The campaign generated tens of thousands of votes and exposed hundreds of thousands of Facebook users to the Gatorade brand.

5. Right Guard and the Phoenix Suns Team Up for a Doubly Branded Sweepstakes Promotion

The Phoenix Suns took advantage of Wildfire’s Multiple Fan Feature to kill two birds with one stone –grow their fan base and that of their sponsor, Right Guard. The Suns on the Road Sweepstakes had a grand prize of winning a trip and tickets to see the Phoenix Suns play at Golden State, but instead of requiring entrants to become a fan of the Phoenix Suns page only, entrants were also required to become fans of Right Guard. Right Guard was able to benefit from the positive association with the Suns and the the Phoenix Suns were able to use Facebook to add value in a new way for their sponsor. To give the campaign an added level of interest, the Sun’s also provided a quiz for fans to find out which Phoenix Suns “Legend” player they’re most like, which encouraged the publication of newsfeeds and further spread the word about the Suns and Right Guard.

Phoenix Suns with Rightguard promotion

7 Strategies for Marketing your Facebook Fan Page Promotions

You’ve taken the time to create a fun, engaging promotion for your users and fans, and you’ve set it up to run from right inside your Facebook Fan Page. The campaign just went live.  Now, you can sit back and wait for it to spread in a viral way, right? Well, not quite.

Creating a promotion and sitting back to “hope for the best”  will not lead to success. Unless you’re one of the lucky multi-national companies who seem to have infinite brand awareness and tons of fans who send news on its merry viral way instantly, you’re going to have to kickstart the spread yourself a bit. Here are some of our favorite advertising strategies that will help you do that…and the good news is, many of these wont cost you penny!

1. Messaging Your Fan Base

If you have an existing fan base, the first thing you should do is reach out to them by posting to your wall multiple times during the promotion. This will not only provide your existing fans with a compelling reason to visit your fan page and engage with your brand, but it will also enable them to spread the word about your promotion to their friends. It’s easy to post a compelling update about your promotion to your fan base– Check out this detailed Wildfire tutorial about how to publish a feed about your promotion right to your Fan Page wall!

We recommend that you message your fans at least three times throughout the promotion – once as soon as you launch, once mid-way through the promotion and once a few days before it ends to remind your fans that time is running out. You should also be thoughtful about when you message your fans. For example, if your most of your fans are from the United States, be sure to post during times that North Americans are most likely to be online. Arbor Networks, an internet security firm, has done several interesting studies around what times North Americans and Europeans go online.

Check out how Chocolate Bakery, who published a sweepstakes themed around March Madness, posted the news to their Fan Page wall as soon as the promotion went live. Their fans see the update in their newsfeed, and can comment and “like” it on the wall. Additionally, posting to your wall more than once is ideal, because not all users look through their Facebook pages daily or at the same time. Try to comment and message your Fan Page wall at different times of the day to reach the most people.

2. Enlist the Help of Your Friends

Don’t have any fans to promote your campaign to? Why not kick-start your campaign by enlisting the help of your friends? Post a feed story to your personal Facebook profile so all your Facebook friends learn about your campaign. Ask your friends and colleagues to do the same, and if they just copy and paste your statement, it should then take less than 30 seconds and will enable you to reach hundreds or even thousands of people.

3. Sending Out an Email Update

If you have a mailing list for your company, send out an email to your subscribers encouraging them to enter your campaign. Promotions such as coupons or giveaways provide a strong incentive for your readers to open the newsletter, especially if you send them out on a regular and thus expected schedule. This is also a powerful way for you to turn your existing newsletter subscribers into fans of your Facebook page.

4. Update your Twitter

Speaking of Twitter, you should promote your campaign through it too! Tweet out messages in 140 characters or less, and use link shorteners like bit.ly or tinyURL to recreate the long URLs to your campaigns into short, Twitter friendly versions. Bit.ly is extra useful because it tracks the clicks your shortened link receives, so if you wanted to measure the results of your linking, it’s easy to set up a free account.

5. Targeted Advertising

You can use targeted advertising on Facebook to drive users to your campaign. It takes 5 minutes to set up your ad and you can target users according to age, gender, geography and other criteria. For example, did you know you can target your “Best Web Design” contest to people who, in their Facebook profiles, wrote that they are employed as Web Designers, or like Web Design, or any interests you could list in a Facebook profile? Facebook ads make it easy to get as specific as you need, to reach out to potentially like minded people to see your promotion.

Image of Facebook Ads home page

6. Register your Contest or Sweepstakes in Online Directories

There are many websites that are dedicated to the tracking and indexing of huge lists of running contests and sweepstakes, and they have dedicated user bases who check the new listings every day, to see the daily changing lists of prizes they could win at various places. Consider registering your sweepstakes or contest with some of these sites–it’s usually free to list in exchange for you to link to the index on your web page, but even this is usually optional. Being tracked by such indexes could be a great way to pull in a group of users who are by nature, or by hobby, highly engaged with promotions.

7. Reach Out to Popular Bloggers

If your brand is part of a social category, like video games, or parent blogging, or cooking groups for example, try reaching out to recognized personal bloggers in that industry. Often, these talented writers have large followings of readers who trust their opinion and will check out a promotion if the blogger endorses it with a mention. For example, McMommy, a popular parenting blogger from Florida tweeted out her participation in a Cadillac promotion for charity. 24 hours later, her most engaged Twitter followers brought her vote tally from 65 (when we first voted for her after reading her tweet) to 665 (when we checked the counts the day after). Now that’s being social.

Screenshot of McMommy Tweet

There are lots of methods to spreading the word about your promotion, and these 7 just happen to be some of the favorites we recommend. Share your favorite ways to market your Wildfire promotions with us in the comments!

Upcoming Facebook Fan Page Tab Design Changes

We wanted to inform you about some upcoming changes to the way campaigns are rendered on Facebook Fan pages. Facebook has announced several changes to the look and function of Fan pages, one of which can affect the way campaigns are displayed within your fan page. Fan Page tabs will shrink from 760 pixels wide (current) to 520 pixels wide to accommodate a slightly revised design. This change has been scheduled for Early 2010, but more specific timing details have not yet been announced. We will certainly post an update once the official dates have been released.

What follows is a pictorial explanation of the expected changes.


What it currently looks like to run a promotion on a Facebook Fan page from Tab View.



Pictured below is the same promotion running in the new Fan page Tab View format, at 520 pixels wide. The header  banner has been adjusted to fit the width of this display, and it can  be seen that some of the details and pictures within the banner are no longer visible past this point. To make sure users see everything you want to show them, we suggest that in the creation of your custom 760 pixel header banners, to leave the banner past the 520 pixel mark without any messages or pictures.



This change only affects the Tab view. When the user enters deeper into the page, like to view the rules, or to submit their entry, they are directed into canvas view, which has not changed in appearance, and remains at the full 760 pixels wide. For this reason, we are not changing the upload specifications of the Header Banner in the Wildfire Promotion Builder tool, and keeping the upload width specification at 760 pixels.


Screenshot of canvas view

What this means for your campaign:

Because the width of the tab display is decreased to 520 pixels, the display of the header banner will be affected. Uploaded header banners which are 760 x 100 pixels will be cut off by the display at the 520 pixel mark. This is a design change that our developers are working on adapting the Wildfire tool to. However, in order to adapt to these display differences rapidly, we recommend that any custom header banners uploaded to the Wildfire Promotion Builder tool be adaptable to both sizes. In other words, you should still upload a 760 x 100 pixel header banner image, but design your image so that if 240 pixels are not displayable off the right side, none of the message is lost.

Our developers have already adjusted the Promotion Builder tool so that the rest of the characteristics of your promotion will not be affected by the Facebook display changes.

As always, we value your feedback and welcome your comments. Feel free to email us at any time if you encounter questions while setting up your promotion.

PRODUCT NEWS: New Turnkey Sweepstakes Prize and Rules Solution

We are really excited to announce some great news! Wildfire is joining forces with Publishers Clearing House (PCH) in a new and exclusive partnership that will greatly enhance sweepstakes promotions. By combining the power of Wildfire’s Promotion Builder with PCH’s newly released API, PCH Boost, Wildfire users can create online sweepstakes promotions within minutes and without the need to draft rules or fulfill prizes. Choosing to use the new PCH Boost option when building out your sweepstakes means you can easily offer your fans and users winnings of up to $100,000 without having to deal with the administration, high costs, legal issues and logistics associated with managing sweepstakes and awarding prize money.

What’s even better, the PCH Boost sweepstakes option will be available for no added cost to a regular Wildfire sweepstakes promotion through June 15, 2010! This means that for the next three months, you can provide your user base the ability to enter to win their dream house, or car, or something equally awesome, at no cost over a regular sweepstakes where otherwise you would need to provide a prize and create the legal documentation on your own.

Wildfire Promotion Builder has already helped thousands of companies to run sweepstakes on Facebook, Microsites, and company websites, but while our technology provided a solution for building and launching sweepstakes, our users still had to take care of their own rules drafting and prize fulfillment. By choosing to use the new PCH Boost option, campaign administrators can make the entire process of managing a sweepstakes campaign much easier, enabling a quicker and more streamlined way for our users to build their Facebook fans, newsletter subscribers and an active customer database.


The option to use PCH Boost is now available right in the Wildfire Campaign Builder Wizard. By selecting this option, you can choose from a range of prizes to offer your user base, and rules will automatically be supplied to suit this prize. The drawing of winners and mailing out of prizes will also be taken care of for you, so all you need to do is promote the sweepstakes and collect your entries!


Screenshot of PCH Boost option on Wizard

The PCH Boost option allows your sweepstakes to be integrated into already existing Publishers Clearing House Sweepstakes, which allows you to generate buzz among your fans and users with the potential for a huge winning prize like $100,000 towards a dream car, but without you having to provide the huge prize or work out the often complicated legal terms and conditions. Once you choose to participate in the PCH option right from within the Wildfire Sweepstakes Builder Wizard you can use the drop down menus to choose from available options for prize winnings and display themes. When users enter these sweepstakes from your Facebook Fan Page or Microsite, they are entered into existing PCH Sweepstakes for those prizes while you get the benefit of building up your fan base and increasing engagement with your brand!

For a step-by-step tutorial of how to use the new sweepstakes turnkey rules and prize fulfillment with PCH Boost, check out the guide here.


The PCH Boost enabled sweepstakes includes choices of PCH supplied headers and banners that compliment the sweepstakes prize you chose for your campaign. The sweepstakes runs right inside of your Facebook Fan Page or Microsite just like all sweepstakes created with the Wildfire tool.


Screenshot of Fbook Boost page

Wildfire to Rock Out at SXSW this Week

Image SXSW logoWildfire is going to the South by Southwest (SXSW) Music and Media Conference and Festival! And we won’t just be eating famous Austin barbecue and meeting new folks from all over the country (although we do hope there will be a lot of that). We’re going to be competing for the ultimate honor of winning the Micosoft Bizspark Accelerator competition to take home the prize of the 2010 Most Innovative Web Technology! Victoria, Alain, and Curtis will be at the conference, so if you want to meet them there to finally see their pretty mugs in person, send over an email to any one of them at [their firstname][at]wildfireapp[dot]com.

Wildfire was chosen as one of the 32 finalists to battle it out on stage during the 2 day Bizspark Accelerator contest. We will be demonstrating our product among a group of some of the most innovative minds and teams in technology today. Needless to say, we are so excited. On Day 2, the judges will have narrowed the selections down to the top 12 companies, and at the end of another day of pitching and demos, the winner will be announced. (Cross your fingers for us!) If you want to tune in on the action, the entire competition will be streamed live through the Accelerator site at SXSW.com, here! The rest of the team will certainly be keeping up with us from the office.

Our CEO Victoria will also be sitting on a panel, talking about Experimental Design and User Interfaces, so if you are at the conference, stop by there and say hey afterwards!


About

We are a group of innovative developers, designers and marketers with a passion for creating a social media marketing platform that helps companies & agencies to engage the millions of social network users. Our platform allows you to easily grow and cultivate your fans & followers.

Wildfire Interactive, Inc.
3485 El Camino Real
Palo Alto, CA 94306
USA

Email: info@wildfireapp.com
Phone: +1 (888) 274-0929
Website: www.WildfireApp.com

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