Beyond's Brand Interaction Study Reveals The Facebook Four

By Beyond, PRNE
Sunday, November 21, 2010

SAN FRANCISCO, November 22, 2010 - Beyond (, NextFifteen's new digital consultancy, has
released a Brand Interaction Study which reveals some important lessons for
how brands can increase engagement through social channels such as Facebook.

Facebook Social Stats Video download:

Beyond Brand Interaction Study Whitepaper:

The study identifies people's motivations for following brands online,
reveals the true customer sentiment of consumer contributed content,
identifies the type of content that most engages fans and highlights the
power of fans as brand advocates. Beyond has identified The Facebook Four as
a guideline for brands as they develop a digital brand interaction strategy:

    1. Provide fans with offers and discounts (42% of people friend a brand
       to get a discount or offer)
    2. The reputational risk is lower than you think so don't just focus on
       managing the negative (Just 5% of all comments are negative)
    3. Fans are better at responding than brands so empower them (Fans are 9
       times more likely to help another fan than the brand itself)
    4. Fans prefer images over video (Posts that contained a mixture of media
       types (e.g., an image and text) tended to receive the most likes)

The study, which highlights the results of analyzing over 14,000 posts on
the corporate Facebook Fan pages of the world's 100 most valuable brands,
also includes the results of a consumer poll of nearly 4,000 consumers based
in the UK and the US. The key findings from Beyond's Brand Interaction Study

    A. The top reasons people would follow a brand in social media include:
       1. To find offers and discounts (42%)
       2. Love of the product (33%)
       3. To get latest news about the brand (24%)
       4. To give them ideas on how to improve the product (12%)
       5. To get better customer service (12%)
       6. To complain (6%)

    B. Key factors common among sites with relatively high fan bases:
       1. Applications bring fans to the page
          Higher fan count was correlated with a greater number of tabs,
          including applications, on a company's page.
       2. Pictures bring fans to the page
          Higher fan count was also correlated with the number of images
          posted on the page, both by the company and by other fans.
       3. Don't try too hard
          Interestingly, companies that post frequently on their own page
          tend to have fewer fans. There was a negative correlation
          between the percentage of all posts on a page that were written
          by a company representative and the number of fans on the page.
          A deeper analysis revealed that this was, in large part, due to
          brands that frequently comment on fan's posts. Our data suggests
          that fans may feel uncomfortable on pages where brands appear to
          be closely monitoring conversations. While it is okay to start a
          conversation by posting a question to all fans, for example, it
          appears to be off-putting when companies respond too often to
          fan comments.

According to David Hargreaves, CEO of Beyond, "Brands are clearly
struggling to embrace the new rules of conversational marketing which
requires them to act as catalysts of the conversation and not control it.
This research clearly shows that those brands that focus on empowering fans,
creating interesting content to spark conversations and providing a light
corporate touch not only have more fans but those fans are more engaged."

Beyond uses sophisticated Conversation Analytics to enable brands to
develop a content, platform and engagement strategy. As part of conducting
the Brand Interaction Study and sharing its findings with brands, Beyond is
offering a limited number of two-hour workshops with brands where it will
share insights with brands and provide some simple, easy to follow
recommendations for increasing engagement across their social platforms.

Beyond, NextFifteen Communications Group digital consultancy, is a
digital consultancy that uses sophisticated Influencer Identification,
Conversation Analytics, and Earned Media Optimization to maximize experiences
and relevant traffic to brand properties using a combination of earned, owned
and paid media. Beyond was created by merging digital agency Type3 with the
research and analytics capabilities of Context-Analytics, a specialist
content analysis business, which has more than 12 years experience in media
analysis. Beyond has over 30 staff, a client base which includes Google,
Genentech, Hilton Group and Virgin America, and has offices in San Francisco
and London.

**Beyond has put together 10 Practical steps for building and engaging
your Facebook community based off the back of the consumer research and

     1. Put together an incentive program for your loyal fans
     2. Increase the use of images and rich media to increase likes
     3. Use polls to increase comment levels
     4. Aim for a ratio of brand comments to fan comments of 1:10
     5. Funnel customer service issues into the appropriate channels and away
        from Facebook
     6. Clearly signpost news distribution from within the corporate facebook
     7. Ask the fans for ideas for content
     8. Integrate your Facebook presence with all other social presences and
        web presence
     9. Let other fans handle a lot of the other negative comments
    10. Benchmark your Facebook presence against other brands in your sector

Additional Facebook Research

Researchers study behavior in social networks

Understanding How Facebook Pages Grow

First-of-its-kind research: Facebook fan pages are effective marketing

Why do Facebook users "Like" brands and products?

David Hargreaves, CEO, c: +1-415-260-7814, david at, or Seth Duncan, Analytics Research and Development Director, c:+1-415-593-8491, seth at, both of Beyond

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