As the Facebook IPO goes public today, the airwaves are abuzz with predictions for the revenue potential of Facebook advertising. But Facebook has already proven itself as a powerful revenue source for companies who use it to build brand loyalty and engagement, according to a new report from social media analytics company Socialbakers.
According to Socialbakers, one of Facebook’s largest benefits is the turnkey access it gives companies to consumers around the world, especially in emerging markets.
"Facebook is clearly giving social-savvy companies unprecedented access to build dynamic relationships and grow revenue in key markets," says Jan Rezab, chief executive officer, Socialbakers. "It can be incredibly time-consuming and difficult to go to market in new regions with a localized website or microsite, even for some of the world's biggest companies. And even then, you've still got a static presence that fails to truly engage your target audience. Facebook eliminates that barrier to entry by providing a well-entrenched and steadily-growing platform."
Among the top 10 brands on Facebook, the overwhelming majority of Facebook fans hail from the U.S.; however, fans in emerging markets are much more actively engaged, and engagement is what really matters. Indonesia, Mexico and the Philippines have the three highest Facebook engagement rates.
"Engagement is the core of the social economy–people buy what their friends buy and recommend," says Rezab. "Simply having a lot of fans isn't the answer to building a strong social economy presence, they must be active. Growing that engagement and viral reach is the key to success, especially in international markets."
Top global brands in terms of Facebook fans are (in descending order): Coca-Cola, Starbucks, Converse, Red Bull and Oreo. Up-and-comers, who are described as “fast-moving,” meaning they have had fastest growth in the number of fans are: Halls, Trident, L’Oreal Paris, Chiclets and Axe.