What is the Value of a Facebook Like?

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The value of a Facebook “Like” has caused quite a stir lately.  As someone who is involved in evaluating decisions about how to spend time and energy as it relates to brand marketing via mobile and social media, I have seen valuations ranging from $139 per “Like” to $0. I would say the value lies somewhere in between, but it would be intellectually dishonest and quite frankly a cop-out.

What I propose instead is to provide a summary of what I’ve researched, make a few well-reasoned thoughts (and most likely a few quips about the “experts” on this subject) and then let you decide how much value there is for your enterprise in going after the almighty “Like”.

First, listed below are the best reads I found on the subject. Rest assured, these will be outdated by the time I post this.

http://www.onedegree.ca/2011/04/the-lifetime-value-of-a-like-on-facebook.html

http://social-media-optimization.com/2011/02/what-is-the-value-of-a-facebook-like-or-twitter-follower/

http://content.usatoday.com/communities/technologylive/post/2011/05/what-facebook-is-really-worth-is-still-clear-as-mud/

And, these are just from the past few months…It seams everyone has an opinion on the value of of a Facebook “Like”. Well, I have one too.

As I continue to tell our Web team, it is not a bad thing to have customers like the brand. In fact, I would like as many people as possible to like Century 21 Real Estate because that means the brand is staying top of mind by adding value for the next generation of home buyers and sellers.

Now, don’t get me wrong I’m not in favor of building a fan base just to build a fan base. It is more important to add fans who are in our demographic wheelhouse (24 – 34 year old females) as these consumers have a direct impact on CENTURY 21 brokers and their agents’ bottom lines…thus the gratuitous image of Kim Kardashian below.

Kim Kardashian, taken at the unveiling of her ...

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If you are a fan of any of our social channels, from www.facebook.com/century21to www.titter.com/century21 to our blog @C21 – Home Matters then you know that our content strategy is targeting this group.

Now, getting back to the question at hand. What is the value of a Facebook “Like”? Much like the value of a well-placed earned media hit, its value varies depending on whom you ask.

If you ask someone who works in finance, it’s not worth the money you spent to get it.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

If you ask someone who sells social media consulting services, it is worth the price of gold…well before the latest run up in gold anyway.

Gold Key, weighing one kilogram is used to acc...

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If you ask someone in marketing management, it equals the value of spend divided by the number of qualified leads it generates times a factor of 20 to the tenth power of brand preference (no this is not real, so don’t leverage it for your own posts and claim it as fact because you gleaned it from the Internet).

In my opinion, it is as undefined as social media metrics are to the sales funnel. Sure, their getting better and we can track data a lot better now, but there are still many unknown variables just like PR.  How many friends of friends opened up (or even saw it for that matter), a piece of content that you shared on your company’s or your own Facebook wall?  I know how many instant impressions it left on their wall, but how many people did it actually reach?  How many people clicked, read or watched the content that you shared?

We know that syndicating content via Web 2.0 platforms helps to stimulate brand preference and generate leads, just like advertising, but we have not nailed down the formula to definitively quantify its ROI to the enterprise.  Trust me, I am working on it…my livelihood depends on it.

I’m sure there are many in the field who are also working on this question.  If you are, please contact me and let me now what you’ve learned on the subject…As the immortal Tupac would say, I ain’t hard to find … and I may even “Like” you.

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