Following our recent post about Surface 2 Air’s extremely successful Facebook competition, we wanted to point out that fantastic engagement in itself isn’t necessarily a desirable end goal.

Free money wins engagement and fans

Let’s a take a look at a recent campaign by Barmade Ltd – a hospitality recruitment agency, based in London.

They took a similar approach to Surface 2 Air, by posting a photo of £100 and asking people to like them and share the photo to have a chance of winning it.

Free money?

But has it helped Barmade Ltd?

On the face of it, this promotion was extremely successful.  The photo was liked 2590 times and shared 3268 times.   Barmade now have 6945 fans on Facebook.

But has this activity helped Barmade?  We had a look at their publicly available stats.

They have had no new fans sign up to follow them in the last month, and their People Talking About Ratio is an infinitessimally small 0.1% (where 2-3% is average).

This suggests that most of the fans that Barmade have gained were only interested in the competition and not in the company.  They are not participating with the brand and although the page has a large potential reach, the actual reach will be very low.

Not bad for £100, but could do better

On the other hand, you could argue that even if the fan base is dormant, it would be hard to find an equivalent marketing campaign that could produce such a good level of response – even if it was short-term – for just £100.

Yet it could have been better.

How many people who shared their photo know anything about the brand?  At the very least they should have included their URL and strapline in the image itself – then they would have increased awareness of their brand and services, rather than just fishing for worthless likes and comments.

By Iain Martin