Home > Uncategorized > How are businesses using FaceBook?

How are businesses using FaceBook?

Ok… so here I am staring at a blank word document, as I search for guidance from my “creative muse” to discuss one aspect of social media, which has transformed the days of our lives way businesses interact with their consumers…. ladies and gentleman, if you haven’t guessed it by now, I am talking about FaceBook. Before I get into the gist of my rant discussion, please allow me the opportunity to state publicly that, “I do NOT own a FaceBook account!” (Holler!) So I have proven the myth that ALL people are FaceBook users to be false (only being facetious here folks!). In fact, I just learned in class last week that that the average user of FaceBook only spends 7 hours on the site, per month (thanks, Rob!).

Now that we have gotten the preliminaries out of the way, I can talk freely from an empirical standpoint on how FaceBook has created a paradigm shift in the way businesses can communicate with their consumers. As I mentioned in an earlier blog post – the Internet and World Wide Web has created this integrated web of global interconnectivity all at the click of a mouse, by empowering “people” to create a customizable experience that best meet their needs.

As such, it created this chasm of various websites all targeted at meeting definable gaps within the marketplace. Leading the charge in the evolution of social networking is FaceBook and it has become a popular “lifestyle-connector.”  Businesses are using this media channel as a means to not only advertise their goods/services but to also play an active role in the “conversations” that are taking place with their valuable assets – you guessed it… the consumer! It gives the consumer a “real time” sounding board to talk about their likes/dislikes on how they feel about a particular good/services, while giving them control (yes, Ms. Jackson) on who they ultimately would like to become a “fan” of hence the coined term, customizable experience.

As a result of FaceBook businesses are able to gain valuable insights from consumers about how they feel about the brand, products, services, and employees among other relevant data. With this data businesses are able to look at any potential holes in their product and service offering(s) and make the appropriate changes thus improving the consumer/business relationship.

Fans of these businesses on FaceBook represent a brand community and Fournier and Lee’s “Getting Brand Communities Right” brought up an interesting point stating that “A brand community is not a marketing strategy but a business strategy that should be used to support business wide goals.” Misiek Piskorski wrote an interesting article illustrating how eBay’s Group Gifts have used FaceBook in a tactical manner, which speaks to Fournier and Lee’s point of using the brand community, as a high level strategy that is part  of the business initiative.

Piskorski asserts that, “businesses need to create a social strategy in order to attain higher success/sales with FaceBook.” Piskorski discusses in detail how eBay’s Group Gifts have been successful at employing this strategy through the use of cultivating relationships with FaceBook users. For more information on this article, please click on the embedded link: http://blogs.hbr.org/cs/2011/03/how_to_use_facebook_to_drive_h.html.

It is estimated that FaceBook has over 600 million active users and more businesses are using this platform because of its global reach in order to effectively manage the meanings of the brand and remain connected with consumers. At its current pace, FaceBook is leading the charge among other social networking sites, like MySpace and Twitter. Whether or not FaceBook will continue to be a dominant player in the market is a question that is best left unanswered. But for now businesses are certainly reaping the benefits in a cost efficient manner.

Categories: Uncategorized

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