What is the value of a like? A recent study suggests not that much…
The Harvard Bussiness Review recently published a study designed to find the value of a like on social media. Specifically, the study wanted to find out if a “like” on Facebook correlated with a future purchase. In order to make this determination researchers divided a focus group into three categories. In the first group, participants each received a coupon via Facebook for a product they and a friend liked and highly recommended. With the second group, each participant received the same coupon for the same product along with a verbal recommendation from a friend. And the third group received the coupon without a recommendation of any kind.
Researchers found that 6% of people who received a verbal recommendation purchased the product while only 4% of those who liked the product and received the recommendation online made a purchase. The control group, which received the coupon with no recommendation, purchased the product 5% of the time. So now we have the proof! Social media is a bunch of crap! Right? Wrong!
If social media doesn’t work, why bother?
The truth is social media does more for your business than simply sell products. Social media is one of the few places where you can build relationships and interact with clients outside of a brick and mortar store. Perhaps more importantly, using social listening, you can monitor conversations about your business and respond accordingly. In addition, social listening gives insight into the likes and dislikes of your followers. Finally, developing a social media following for your business gives you the ability to advertise to a group of people that you know are at least somewhat interested in your business.
The results of this study give fuel to the argument that “social media is dead” but in reality, it’s not. Just like there is value in creating a strong personal network, there is value in creating a strong digital network as well.