Facebook Isn’t Always the Answer – 77% of Fan Pages Have Fewer than 1,000 Fans

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It can often seem like the simple, and obvious step for any brand. You want to engage with people online, you want to get your brand using social media. What’s the answer? For too many brands the first thing they do is go to Facebook and set up a fan page. This might not always be the right answer.

Research from Sysomos, reported in TechCrunch, shows that Fan Pages in Facebook are not always as popular as some brand might think, or hope.

The research looked at 600,000 Facebook fan pages on Facebook and looked at how many fans they have. Over a third of all pages (35%) had fewer than 100 fans, and over three-quarters (77%) had fewer than 1,000 fans. The number of groups with more than 10,000 fans was small, and very few indeed have fans in six figures. The distribution was as follows:

  • 95% of pages have more than 10 fans
  • 65% of pages have more than 100 fans
  • 23% of pages have more than 1,000 fans
  • 4% of pages have more than 10,000 fans
  • 0.76% of pages have more than 100,000 fans
  • 0.047% of pages have more than one million fans (297 in total)

Facebook is not always the answer and the proportion of fan pages that attract a large number of fans is relatively small. Size is not always everything, but many brands setting up a presence on Facebook are doing so because they hope, and expect, to easily build a large fan base online that they can engage with. This is not as easy as brand expect and too often those looking to Facebook for large volumes of engaged fans will be disappointed.

Facebook is not always the answer. Sometimes it is, and sometimes it isn’t. Brands that make the most successful use of it are those who have a clear strategy and have thought about exactly why they are using Facebook and who they want to engage. There are many examples of successful use of Facebook by brands, but as this study shows, many many more examples of brands who fail to get a large volume of fans.

Before you do anything with social media you need to know why you’re doing it. You need a social media strategy in place to know what you are looking to acheive, who you want to engage and the best way of doing this. If, having gone down this process, Facebook is the answer then you should move ahead with it. But very often it won’t be and you should be considering something else instead. If more brands thought about their strategic aims and put a detailed engagement plan in place before embarking on a social media campaign, there would be fewer of these empty Facebook fan pages.

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Original Post: http://blog.freshnetworks.com/2009/11/facebook-isnt-always-the-answer-77-of-fan-pages-have-fewer-than-1000-fans/