Why Facebook ?

Had a great conversation yesterday with a marketing director who is consistently facing the “we want Facebook” situation. The story goes that advertisers are being asked by their clients to create Facebook pages and campaigns “because we want it”. While that is all good, the opportunity falls in the ability to link client Facebook wants to consumer Facebook needs. When a client asks for Facebook, I ask why.

If there is not a solid brand metric / brand metrics in place, I would suggest starting there. Studies of this sort can be completed at a reasonable cost and very quickly. Additionally, findings are leveragable across all channels. Facebook is best when connected to solid brand strategy.

Regarding strategy…
Great conversation is happening re Groupon and strategic relevance. The company, which is known primarily for offering online coupons for local merchants, is also moving to generate sales from national retailers. Groupon’s “national deals” accounted for 12% of revenue in the fourth quarter of 2010.

Groupon offers trial and price. Trial and potentially gaining new long-term customers is great and the rush of business is never bad, but some are seeing that Groupon customers are not long-term customers. I would say that Groupon is about increasing trial (potential for long-term customers) at a highly discounted rate (all short-term here).

Groupon now has 51 million subscribers to the email it sends to promote deals, and hopes to increase that number three-fold, to 150 million, by the end of this year. The company also hopes to generate more revenue that doesn’t rely on this email blast. In the memo, Mr. Mason wrote that he hopes for, “at least $1B in revenue from new products we launch in 2011, not just the current daily email.”