2 Mistakes Prestige Brands Make on Facebook That You Must Avoid

By Neil Glassman 

Many marketers look at the Facebook Pages of prestige brands envying their beautiful graphics and large number of Likes. A new study conducted by L2, and released in collaboration with Buddy Media, looks beneath the veneer of the Facebook pages of 100 prestige brands. Applying a scale determined by more than 200 qualitative and quantitative data points, these brand Pages were assigned a Facebook IQ ranking of Genius, Gifted, Average, Challenged or Feeble.

The full report [free download] ranks the 100 Pages examined and spotlights some of the Genius sites. Let’s take a look, though, at study findings that point to several consistent missteps made by lower-ranked brands in their Facebook strategies and implementations. Being familiar with these can help you keep your page from being Challenged or Feeble.

Mistake 1 — Focus on Likes instead of engagement

Analysis of the number of Likes on a page versus the level of engagement (fan interaction, post frequency) demonstrates a negative correlation. The report states that, “Although many prestige brands maintain monocular focus on the size of their Facebook community, they have failed to embrace the authentic two-way communication and marketing activation required to monetize the platform.”

20% of the prestige brands do not allow fans to post on their wall(s); these brands posted IQs of 82 versus an average IQ of 107 for brands allowing wall posts.

Lack of engagement can result in a downward spiral for brands. Fewer interactions result in reduced EdgeRank, causing posts to appear less frequently on Fans’ News Feeds, decreasing the opportunities for interaction.

Mistake 2 — Keeping Facebook as an island

According to the report, the strongest Facebook campaigns are integrated across platforms and offline media. Many brands not only fail to take advantage of cross-platform sharing and Like functions, fewer than half the brands studied had a permanent link from their websites to their Facebook Pages.

Other observations of note

L2 Founder Scott Galloway and Buddy Media CEO Michael Lazerow presented this study at this week’s OMMA Social conference. In addition to reviewing the published findings, Galloway observed that, in the luxury sectors, he found a high correlation between innovation and leadership by women. Referring to many of the brands with poor social media initiatives, Galloway commented, “Facebook and digital are the equivalent of skinny jeans. Corporations are using them to make themselves look younger.

According to the study, global brands that maintain regional pages to target local markets and/or locally targeted posts boast higher interaction rates. Further, none of the Prestige 100 currently engages in Facebook commerce and it’s predicted this will be the area of greatest investment over the next 12 months.

According to Galloway, “Facebook aptitude will be one of the defining competencies that separates winners from losers when it comes to prestige brands.” There is no reason to believe this is not true for brands of all sizes.


Neil Glassman is principal marketing strategist at WhizBangPowWow, where he delivers malarky-free social, digital and linear media solutions. Join his conversation on Twitter or email Neil to talk about marketing or swap recipes.