In Marketing week today research has shown that companies are failing to agree on this question. At present, most businesses have their own Facebook pages but not all of them know how to make the best of social media. In fact, the gap between the most and the least visited was quite wide.
The research was based on a comparison between the number of visitors on a brand’s Facebook page and the number of users who go to its brand website, monitoring the online activity of 200,000 people in the UK for three months, starting in May 2011.
Four different sectors were analysed: FMCG, travel, retail and telecom. Brands from the first sector boast the highest traffic on Facebook pages, with an average of over 35%, while the other three sectors register a modest 3.3%, 0.8% and 0.4% respectively. The researchers believe that this gap is due to the fact that most FMCG brands do not own transactional websites, so users generally prefer to visit the brand’s Facebook page. The highest traffic was registered by Skittles (over 97%), followed by Heinz tomato ketchup (95%), compared to McDonald’s, whose Facebook traffic is at just 0.02%
Only about 15% of the brands from travel, retail and telecom score over 1% of Facebook traffic, compared to their website visits. However, there is also a logical explanation for this – most of the businesses in these brands support e-commerce applications, so they prefer to draw the consumers’ attention in that direction.
What brands should perhaps be considering isn’t where should they spend their budget, but how much of a relationship does a consumer really want to have with them. A lesson the financial services sector were schooled in recently, when many found that customers don’t want a relationship, they want a service, and that’s an “at need” service.