How Much Is a Facebook Friend Worth? $174.17

Need a Self-Esteem Boost? Look at Your Facebook Profile

The next time you “like” something on Facebook, you might imagine a little cash register ringing…ca-ching. That’s because new research suggests that every time you “like” or “friend” a brand or business, your actions are worth approximately $174.17 to that brand — a 28 percent increase since 2010.

The research, conducted by social intelligence company Syncapse, studied more than 2,000 Facebook users who had liked a brand, taking into account such factors as product spending, loyalty, propensity to recommend, media value acquisition cost and brand affinity to determine the value of a Facebook fan.

Facebook fans spend more money not only on the brands they fan ($116 more per year than nonfans), but also within the brand's sector — 43 percent more, despite not having a higher income than nonfans, the study found.

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Those fans are also 18 percent more satisfied with their brands than nonfriends, and 11 percent more likely to continue using the brand than nonfriends.

Following the old maxim that 20 percent of customers represent 80 percent of revenues (also known as the Pareto principle), the study suggests that the better you can isolate key customer segments, the more relevant your messaging can be to drive loyalty and grow revenues through targeted offers.

Brand managers should aim to interact with customers on Facebook to understand what they're passionate about, solicit their input and enable a feeling of ownership, the study advises.

There are two reasons brand managers should curry this crowd. Facebook users who like your brand are much more active in social media and are vocal about what they like and what they don't. They like to share good brand experiences, promotions and discounts, but are also likely to share a bad brand experience.

Your brand's Facebook users are your evangelists. The study recommends prioritizing your social media marketing investment to make sure they're happy: Ensure they feel appreciated and nurtured, and find ways to talk about your brand and share their opinion.

"The increase in average fan value is driven by fans' tendencies to be superconsumers," the report said. "Not only do they tend to be brand users first, they spend more, engage more, advocate more and are more loyal. The significant and increasing value of a Facebook brand fan affirms past social marketing investment and mandates deeper commitment and accountability in the future."

Reach BusinessNewsDaily senior writer Ned Smith at Follow him on Twitter @nedbsmith.Follow us @BNDarticles, Facebook or Google +.

This story was originally published on BusinessNewsDaily.

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