Facebook – Transition From Social Network To Digital Marketing Platform In India

Facebook is the latest big thing in India. As Indians started using Facebook heavily, Indian brands took the opportunity to connect with their customers there. Different companies are using Facebook in different ways; for some it is just about making relationships, whereas some others are using the platform for spreading awareness or generating leads through word of mouth.

Facebook icon is making its way to the offline banner ads and TV commercials. Airtel, one of the popular mobile phone service providers in India highlighted the popularity of Facebook in one of their TV commercials, ‘jo mera hai wo tera hai’ which became quite popular among the mass. It is needless to mention that Facebook has become one of the important aspects of digital marketing. So much so that for some of the companies it is the only sales channel making Facebook not only an elite member of the social media group, but an independent digital marketing platform.

Here are some examples how Indian companies are using Facebook:

Myntra.com, an Indian e-commerce portal that deals with fashion and lifestyle products, relies on its Facebook page to interact with their existing customers and to expand their customer base as well. The portal’s Facebook page that focuses on clothing has 1,108,965 Likes till date.

It uses sponsored ads and sponsored stories to reach out to the potential buyers on Facebook. The portal observed 120% increase in transactions coming from Facebook along with 75% increase of total Facebook traffic.

“The Facebook platform now plays a very important role in our customer acquisition and brand building strategy,” said Ashutosh Lawania, co-founder and head of sales and marketing at Myntra. “Since ROI (returns on investment) from our Facebook spend is quite healthy, we intend to further scale up our marketing efforts using this channel,” he added.

Straightline.in, a B2C ecommerce website from mjunction Services Ltd, which is a joint venture of Tata Steel and SAIL, relies a lot on Facebook.

K Senthilnathan, chief, B2C ecommerce venture at mjunction said:

“We have adopted a more interactive approach in engaging our customers. The consumer can actually have fun interacting with the brand as opposed to a pure deal based transactional approach. Today our Facebook page has a fan base of 74,148.”

Linen Club, largest linen manufacturer and retailer in India, is quite active on Facebook as well. Their Facebook page has 388,411 Likes and it is pretty interactive too.

Chumbak, a very young startup in the travel and souvenir products space, uses Facebook as their only marketing channel. The company uses Facebook ads to attract potential customers to their Facebook page. The startup use its Facebook page to keep people informed about their product line, new product launches, discounts and special offers etc.

Vivek Prabhakar, the Founder and CEO of Chumbak explained,

“There is nothing else out there that gives you the ability to reach out to your target audience the way Facebook does. Whether it’s a product launch or a contest or even customer queries, it’s honestly the best marketing tool a startup like Chumbak can have.”

Chumbak claims to get five-fold ROI on total advertising spend with Facebook. 25% of its online revenue is coming from Facebook.

Not only the companies in fashion or travel space, car brands in India are quite active on Facebook. India’s first fully integrated auto eCommerce, autojunction.in, launched a contest for car enthusiasts on Facebook. Their Facebook page has got 72,560 Likes on Facebook till date.

Here is an infographic by Paul Writer that explains how the car brands are interacting with their audience in India.

Infographic goes here:

Marketers and Indian brands need to make the best of this Facebook as a platform now; at the same time, Facebook has to come up with more attractive and useful tools to help the marketers reach out to the exact demographic in a cost effective and measurable way.

Top Image Courtesy |  ecaps.net

5 Responses to “Facebook – Transition From Social Network To Digital Marketing Platform In India”

  1. February 19, 2013 at 4:05 pm #

    Majority of Indians on web are accustomed with facebook and reluctant to use Twitter or any other social network. I myself consider FB as the best platform to share everything (personal) and it is the best market place in India online. One can easily promote a particular service or product to the targeted market on FB (targeted mass). FB is the ideal platform to gain benefits for your business in terms of visibility or leads through engagement with people.

    BDW a great stuff written. It was nice going through your post, liked it.

    @Saikat: looking forward to mor articles.

    Regards,
    Abhijit

  2. February 19, 2013 at 7:47 pm #

    Totally agree Facebook is a digital marketing platform (well, and a fun way to waste away the day). However, it’s tough to see a return from it. I can track e-commerce purchases pretty easily from social media, but it’s not like it’s bringing in thousands of dollars a month for me.

  3. Saikat
    February 20, 2013 at 4:24 pm #

    Hi Michael,

    It might not be the right platform for all; Indian ecommerce portals that deal with apparels are getting good returns.

    The way you approach your customers, is another factor that define success. One creative campaign might make you successful!

  4. February 20, 2013 at 11:48 pm #

    its a open fact that facebook is now monitizing its onlne as well as mobile platform. its a complete game of generating money. i just hate when ads appear suddenly on my Facebook app on iPhone

  5. shalini
    February 22, 2013 at 1:21 pm #

    whatever said and done India is not there with ecommerce as it is in the West – the eCommerce companies need to up their quotient on ‘search marketing’ and understand their customers better than sending emails which talking about slashing of prices and discounts.

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