Tuesday, October 23, 2012
Toronto, October 23, 2012 - Facebook announced that it now has one billion users – an astounding number. On the other hand, you or your organization may have but 1000 or 10,000 – hardly a dent, and at best, a rounding error.
"Whether your number is on the lower side or hovering at a billion," says Randall Craig, Web and Social Media Strategist, author of the Online PR and Social Media series. "This singular measure of 'success' is of little value, and can be misleading."
Randall Craig offers two reasons why:
- How many of those users are actually active? How often does each person actually sign in, let alone 'engage'? Facebook uses statistics called Monthly Active Users and Daily Active Users: but what does 'Active' really mean? 'Activity level' is a useful statistic only if it is defined, and transparent
- What are those who do log in actually doing? They are posting inane details, reading the inane details of others', and playing games like Farmville and Mafia Wars. So-called 'F-Commerce' has turned out to be a dud – no one seems to be setting up stores and when they do, no one is buying. Engagement level by activity is a far better statistic. Sales and profitability are also not bad numbers to track
McDonald's also once celebrated Billions Served. Eventually they also figured out that people cared more about taste, healthfulness, clean restaurants, and speed. They also determined that an emotional brand connection was more powerful than just numbers.
Adds Craig: "The most important statistic is whether the effort being spent is driving the results your organization requires."
• If your goal is greater awareness, then track the increase in number of likes, shares and friends.
• If your goal is increased number of leads, then track newsletter sign-ups and white paper downloads.
• If your goal is increased sales, then yes, track sales, and do it by source.
Is a billion users a significant milestone? Absolutely. Does it matter? Not in the least.
What numbers do you track in social media? More importantly, what numbers do you track in your business? And do these numbers make sense?
Since 1994, Randall Craig has advised on web and social media strategy. He is the author of six books including the Online PR and Social Media series. More information about Randall Craig can be found at www.randallcraig.com.
For more information contact:
416.256.7773 x101 / Randall@108ideaspace.com
416.256.7773 x 103 / Carolyn@108ideaspace.com
Pinetree Advisors Inc.