Social Media and the Fortune 100

7 07 2010

This is just one of the fantastic graphs put together by the team behind iStrategy, which breaks out what platforms the Fortune 100 are engaged with. For the full graphical work, click here.

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Facebook’s Sandberg: Brands Can Be Social Too

27 06 2010

This is a great talk by Sheryl Sandberg at Nielsen’s Consumer 360 event, Facebook’s COO and a powerful speaker and salesperson. “If you want to know what people like us will do tomorrow, you look at what teenagers are doing today.” She continues that only 11% of teenagers are using email; increasingly, they’re texting and using social networks to communicate with each other. Of course you already know this which is why you’re reading this post to begin with.

What makes Facebook such a critical marketing tool is a combination it’s user base, its scale/reach, and the experiences it enables between those users and brands:

  • User Base: Make no mistake Facebook’s users are its most powerful asset.  Despite all the recent hullabaloo and bad press regarding privacy issues, I have no doubts that Facebook absolutely wants to provide the best, most reliable and trust-worthy user experience for their users.  By continuing to provide a platform where users can securely connect and share with other parties (friends, brands, groups etc.), Facebook will be in a dominant position to win marketing budgets as well as content-sharing/publishing deals.
  • Scale/Reach: Facebook is massive; I won’t go into much of the stats, but two of my favorites are 1.) two-thirds (70%) of Facebook’s members lived outside the U.S., 2.) more than 100 million users access the site via mobile devices.  When you combine these with their impressive time-spent stats, you may begin to see why so many believe Facebook has the potential to have more impact than Google or Microsoft.
  • Experiences: Beyond the user to user interactions that occur, brands are every day finding new methods and approaches to engaging users in an effective fashion.  I believe it’s still early days for these experiences and Facebook is prodding along (as are 3rd party application developers) on how to give brands and users more interactive and engaging experiences via the platform.

For nearly all the campaigns we work on, Facebook development is a core element of the strategy for all of the above reasons. I share with clients that Facebook enables you so much flexibility both in the size of the brand using it, as well as how they choose to interact. Small brands (like a restaurant establishment) without even a website can launch a FB fan page as their primary web presence to share basic materials like brochures, images and promotions. Large brands can tie their FB experiences to content databases and through integrated applications and tabs, can do a more effective job of sharing the content they have with the users looking for it.