Facebook Marketing: Updated Stats from NY Times’ Day-After Election Push

The day after the US elections, the New York Times ran an aggressive campaign on Facebook that included Facebook’s new social video and virtual gifts ad products.

Today, the Nieman Journalism Lab at Harvard has some stats from a recent internal NY Times memo describing the success of the campaign:

  • The home page video was seen by 68.3 million people, and 34,000 comments were shared
  • The virtual gift was sent by Facebook users to their friends over 400,000 times
  • The number of fans of the NY Times page increased from 49,000 to 164,000 in 24 hours, “far exceeding our 2008 goal of 100,000 fans”

Some notable quotes from NY Times President Scott Heekin-Canedy:

  • The goals of the campaign were to increase our number of Facebook fans; raise awareness of NYTimes.com as an interactive news center; and engage the Facebook community in a conversation about the election outcome.
  • Possibly the greatest success of this campaign, however, is that our fans continue to rapidly grow (181,000+ fans as of November 19 ) into a powerful, free word-of-mouth network that we will leverage for future marketing messages.
  • From our perspective, the home page roadblock campaign was a great success, garnering us 4.3 times the value of our spend.

Most marketers are not able to afford the big spend that the NY Times made for a “home page roadblock campaign” on a highly trafficked day, but the Times is apparently satisfied with the investment!