Top Reasons Fans Follow Brands on Facebook

In the past, I’ve uncovered how marketers can develop an effective Facebook fan page strategy by meeting the needs of customers and creating an environment with a clear value proposition to fans.  To take this even further, I wanted to share some recent data by eMarketer that takes a deeper dive into the motivations of fans on branded pages and what suggestions fans have for brands to improve within this space.

Facebook Fans Perceived Page Benefits

In my last series, data from a 2010 survey showed the top reason fans were a fan of a brand on Facebook was to receive discounts and promotions (25% of survey respondents), compared to only 8% who were fans of a brand to be the first to know information about the brand.  Now, a little more than a year later we see a similar poll showing a slight shift happening – the leading fan page benefit is now being able to receive the latest news about the brand, followed by new product information.

What can marketers learn from this?  Contests, giveaways, and special offers are still valued by fans, but not always required.  Mature brands in the social space may explore creating content that engages fans with the latest news and product information in innovative ways.

Fan Suggestions

The chart below is another bit of research that highlights specific suggestions for branded fan pages from fans themselves.  While we just learned that fans perceive the latest information as a reason to be involved with the brand,  this data clarifies this even further by showing that fans really desire more advance information from the brand such as sneak peeks and previews.  In my opinion, this is one reason the Ford Explorer Facebook reveal received the type of buzz and exposure it did.  Brands should not only use social channels like Facebook to disseminate information, but to preview information in such a way that can build fan excitement leading up to a launch or announcement.

Additionally, a couple of other fan suggestions on this list can help shed some light on ways that social media marketing can become more suited for fans .  For instance, two suggestions that are particularly interesting are fans wanting the “ability to take part in games, competitions” as well as fans wanting “invitations to events related to the brand beyond Facebook.”

These two particular suggestions can show a marketer a couple of things.  For one, fans are interested in being more involved.  This means that social media marketers must find unique ways to involve the fan in something that is more meaningful than just another sweepstakes.  They want excitement, competition, and the ability to take part in something with others. Secondly, fans are beginning to expect social media marketers to take this involvement with the brand into the offline world.  To help this happen, a closer marketing convergence will surely be required so that opportunities in the real world can also be extended to fans.

All of this being said,  what do you think are other ways marketers could improve their Facebook fan page presence? Feel free to share in the comments below.

Ignite Social Media