Going to start this off really slowly since everyone was getting rowdy yesterday for the 4th of July except for my friend Gini Dietrich who said she was staying in to respond to all my comments about Google + on her blog yesterday.
LBS Check In Fails:
There was a time when I thought services like Gowalla and Foursquare would never catch on because they seemed really a means to tell people you aren't home so please rob me, or for stalkers, etc. I seriously was expecting the first serious news events with people being robbed, murdered, or possibly hounded for autographs. But this was before I got my Android Phone back in August 2010.
But then I got my Droid2 and started the 'I will check in everywhere and post to Twitter' part of my life that everyone hates so much. Which then led to me getting my first reward last October at Chili's...Free Chips and Salsa. And then no others. I stopped sharing on Twitter except for very unique instances. And I stopped adding any friends on either network whom I did not already know. But I still check in. Not everywhere. But I do. But guess what. You are not. No one is.
Go to any establishment with high traffic. Your mall. Your favorite restaurant. And look at the check in volume on Foursquare, Gowalla, and Facebook Places. It is really zero. So the fad is over. And unless I start seeing value these businesses will go under. It's not that I do not see a use for them if they offer proper incentives. And I have seen some when I look at what is nearby. But they obviously aren't prevalent enough with critical volume of participants to really motivate anyone right now. And to me like the years 2000-2009 were a lost decade for America since in that time span the US worker was making less than when they started the decade (after inflation), it was a lost year for LBS where they could of showed us enough value to catch on like crazy.
Miami v Orlando
Miami decided to open a storefront on Facebook. While someone like Aaron Strout, with all the rational reasoning says this is a good move, eyeballs are there and why not sell some stuff if you can. I question whether the Heat are moving product on their page.
If you check out what is offered vs their own private store that gives zero money to facebook and can be tricked out in impressive ways who would prefer shopping on the Facebook Page?
In fact if you look at their wall, they get about 1,000 to 5,000 clicks of Engagement per wall post. They have 3.3Mil fans. That is a whopping 0.03% to 0.15% Engagement. That is not moving product. Of those 5,000 who click LIKE how many never leave their own Facebook Page? Most. And since the company who created the store front Milyoni doesn't share sales data we have zero proof anything was sold. Am I against extra sales this way? No, not at all. But it will never be a big driver of revenue since the store is so limited and so few come to the Fan Page directly.
Now Orlando is smart!
If you click the little shop button it takes you to.....drum roll please
The Lie about Social Product Research:
Lastly let us get over the bullshit being slung by Facebook, Social Media Agencies, Mashable and the Social Media Talking Heads. We are not going to our social networks first for product research. I have tried crowd sourcing and it fails. Almost always. I rarely get feedback on Twitter or Facebook when I ask questions about products. It is because I am not asking my network. I am asking the small percent of my network that sees my inquiry. So of my 1300 Twitter followers if I am lucky on a good day 100 will see my tweet. Then of course of that 100 how many will actually have an answer for me? Nevermind respond.
And the latest study confirms we go to our Social Network last: LINK
I bet when you look over that list you will agree it most likely mimics your own behavior.
In Fact Media Post published yesterday a study (totally mis-titled!) that only 25% of Consumers go to Facebook Brand Pages at least once in a month to keep up with sales and promotions. If you go to 1 Brand Page in 1 Month for this purpose that is equal to ZERO people. Good luck getting your promotion seen on Facebook. People just don't care when it comes to social networks about your Brand. Sorry. It is a flawed article. Considering we each have hundreds of brands that want us to fan them, if only 20% of consumers Like 5 or more pages this proves they are a failure. If 75% of consumers never go to the pages after all this time touting them, they are a failure. And if you think your brand is different I have proof it is not.
And I know someone will now show me the Exception like Tony Hawk on Twitter. Exceptions are great. But they are called an Exception for a reason!
The true title of the article: People don't care and don't visit Brand Pages on Facebook!
Just maybe we are too busy chatting with friends and family? Just maybe we rarely see posts from Fan Pages? Just maybe we just don't care about Brands the way Marketers say we do? Just maybe....