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Sci - Tech

Facebook `draining your time and wallet`

Sunday - Apr 22, 2012, 01:40am (GMT+5.5)
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New York -  Cutting back on checking up on Facebook ‘friends’ could not only save your time, but it could also save your money.

A new survey has revealed that Facebook users are heavily influenced to make impulse buys based on the recommendations of contacts on the social media website.

The survey from online marketing experts Sociable Labs found that three quarters of people who regularly shop online click on product links shared or ‘liked’ by friends on the site, the Daily Mail reported.

More than half of these then went on to buy products recommended by their Facebook friends, the survey of 1088 Facebook users found.

Experts from Sociable Labs are calling this process ‘social proofing’, in which consumers are attracted to products based on the opinions of online communities.

And the people who did buy this way, dubbed ‘Social Buyers’, are extremely valuable customers – 81 per cent are Social Sharers too, Sociable Labs reports.

“Retailers have the ability to trigger this kind of sharing from their e-commerce sites, driving both significant referral visits and conversion uplift if they fully leverage it,” Darby Williams, vice president of marketing at Sociable Labs, told AOL DailyFinance.

“Now with high-velocity ‘frictionless sharing’, social sharing can become one of the top drivers of both for almost any online retailer,” Williams added.

Brands are fast realising the impact that this kind of ‘social proofing’ can have on the way they market their products.

Consumers in the U.S. spend 15 per cent of their online time on Facebook where they are bombarbed with recommendations, status updates and other information via its newsfeed.

Rohit Bhargava, senior vice president with WPP agency Ogilvy, has coined the term ‘likeonomics’ to describe how social media approval can influence consumers’ purchasing habits.

And Facebook’s own analysis of its top 100 brand pages, reported by AOL, has indicated that every fan offers brand exposure to a further 34 Facebook friends of that fan - a multiplier effect with massive potential.


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