money hand

Do you care if another company has more Facebook fans than you?  I will let you in on a little secret…it doesn’t matter.  A few years ago it was the measurement that meant success or failure of your brand page but not now.

In 2009 many brands and businesses built their pages quickly by purchasing fans and many are still shelling out cash in order to bulk up their number.  Beyond the ethics of buying your friends, there are many other ways this can hurt your image, brand and social media strategy.  Buying friends online is as pointless as buying them in real life.  They say they like you, but have no interested in supporting you.

We now understand online marketing in an entirely different capacity and it is not the popularity contest it once was.  Here are a few reasons why being patient pays off.

Real Fans Like Your Brand

They like you, they really like you!  A real fan has made a conscious decision to like your page.  It might be your product, a special post that caught their attention or maybe someone who is doing their research before making a purchase.  Any way you look at it, they picked you.

Real Fans Interact

You know when you post great material and your fans do too.  If what you are posting is relevant, intriguing or creates a cause to action, your fans will let you know they support you by interacting with your page.

Real Fans Become Customers

Your business is online to connect with current or potential customers.  When someone chooses to like your page, they are showing interest.  The real magic happens when interest meets engagement.  The more a fan interacts, the closer you are to gaining a new customer.

Real Fans Promote from Within

Your best marketing tool is the recommendation of a happy customer.  We already know the value of word-of-mouth and social media has made it even more important.  When real fans like or share your online content they are promoting their support for all to see.  It is a golden stamp of approval for your brand.

Real Fans Don’t Hurt Your Metrics

If you want to be able to measure your success, make sure your fans are real.  Fake fans change your metrics, demographics and data.  They muddy the waters and it becomes increasingly difficult to measure your online success.

Recently Facebook and Twitter have begun the process of looking for and eliminating fake fans.  Brands that have paid for people to like them will end up losing their fans anyway.  Ironic isn’t it?

Be patient and remember who your real friends are!

Candy Jones-Guerin, owner of WebWorld Advantage, is an innovator in Social Media, Email Marketing, Marketing Consulting, Training and Education.