Did you realize that your following or friending someone, or some company, had a monetary value?
Well, thanks to fellow blogger Adam Singer I found out that yes indeed there is a price sticker on my forehead, at least according to some company called Virtue (with a name like that you gotta know this isn’t going to end well). It seems that after studying a combined 41 million fans from their client’s pages (there are 400 million accounts on Facebook – I’ll let you figure out the statistical value of their sample base) the people at Virtue have concluded that a fan is worth $3.60.
All this “based on impressions generated in Facebook’s news feed” eh. Wow. Incredible.
The only problem is – as Adam pointed out – this is for the most part, all bullshit. Virtue said that it arrived at this dollar figure based on a $5 CPM that they say is worth $300,000 in media value if a brand has a million followers.
A couple of points that Adam makes regarding these figures is worth mentioning
- This company is lumping together their clients who are from multiple verticals – something that makes this number muddied even if you were going to take it seriously (you shouldn’t).
- Impressions by themselves from the news feed – or from the web in general mean absolutely nothing to a company’s revenue (unless the company is ad supported).
- Tagging a fan to impression value makes absolutely no sense.
- They claim a $5 CPM without any rationale for that number.
The other big point is that these numbers are totally self-serving as Virtue’s main business is selling Social Media management solutions, but of course because it’s all about Social Media no one would have any reason to skew or glorify questionable numbers now would they.
If you ever wanted a clue though as to how Social Media is all about marketing; regardless of all the it’s about the conversation you hear pouring out of these people, it is bullshit studies like this that put a price sticker on us in order to sell products.