Today every business wants to crack social media. The medium that is still evolving in the country has seen different success metrics to be called a successful brand on social media. A year back it was all about Facebook fans and Twitter followers, today the metrics have changed. Over the year, brands have also realized that having millions of fans makes no sense if no one is taking on the page or sharing it. So this year we are seeing more creative social media campaigns, a vision to build communities and using social networks creatively.
But a recent article that was posted initially at Forbes India by Shravan Bhat and later was posted in Firstpost (with a small change in the title) claimed that the frozen yoghurt chain Cocoberry, with just 25 outlets across India, has cracked social media and earned more than 2.1 million fans on Facebook. The article also claimed that Cocoberry is the biggest frozen yogurt brand on Facebook and placing them in the top 30 food brands (and in the top 5 ice cream/dessert brands) on Facebook worldwide. The article however, forgot to provide a link about the 30 food brands and other tall claims which sounded quite exciting initially and deserved a like or a retweet. But alas if you go into more details the article does not stop at tall claims; it has come out with weird metrics that in no way prove Cocoberry has cracked social media.
We did our research (Thanks to Omkar for his contributions) on the matter as we understand it better and we have two bold reasons to prove the claims made at Firstpost and Forbes India about Cocoberry, have been made without any research and understanding about social media (number of fans and regular posting are no more the only metrics to decide the success of a brand on social media.)
1. Comparison of Cocoberry with other outlets
The article starts comparing Cocoberry with other brands like Cafe Coffee Day, Blue Foods’ Gelato Italiano, etc. on the basis of number of outlets vs the total number of fans on Facebook page. The article says that,
“Cocoberry with just 25 outlets has more than 2M fans but Café Coffee Day, with over 1,000 outlets, has 3.4 million Facebook fans and Blue Foods’ Gelato Italiano has over 80 outlets and just 50,000 Facebook fan.”
Now what I fail to understand is how are we driving success metrics by comparing outlets vs Facebook fans. It is a known secret that more the money you spend on Facebook ads, the more fans you have. So if I have spent less money in procuring fans, have I failed on social media? There are brands with millions of fans but when it comes to responding to consumer grievances, they go deaf. So this is just an absurd metrics.
Further the article has provided a chart shown below which takes total number of fans and divides by total outlets and has shown that 84,000 fans are from each outlet of Cocoberry.
The metrics again is confusing because the outlet in Delhi Cocoberry itself has more than 12 outlets so am I supposed to believe that every outlet drives more than 84K fans? Even if I believe then on how sure is the author that a particular fan is from a particular outlet when Facebook provides analytics only about country, city and language?
Besides this, we have found that out the distribution of fans for last month – close to 179K fans are from Indonesia and another 66K fans from Peru and Philippines. The analysis that was done with the help of Unmetric, a social monitoring product showed that only 1, 628,635 are Indian fans. So my next question is – Cocoberry is yet to open any operation in international places like Peru and Philippines then doesn’t the metric of total number of fans/total outlets fall apart?
2. Content and Engagement of Cocoberry on Facebook and Twitter
The article then moves on to prove that the gain of fans is because of the lovely page. The article says that,
“But I think there’s a reason behind this: Cocoberry’s Facebook page is really quite good. Their art work is chic and colourful and the page is updated regularly but not so often that it is spam – something many Facebook pages are accused of.”
The article initially credited all this good work of creating engaging content and talking to millions of fans to a 19-year-old summer intern. But later when Cocoon Design claimed that they are responsible for the social strategy (We have contacted the agency but we are yet to hear from them) the author made changes and said,
“Though the marketing content is created by advertising agency Cocoon Design, the interaction with millions of Facebook fans is run by a 19-year-old summer intern, who first joined the company working in-store on her winter vacation! “
The change only says that Cocoon Design is responsible for marketing content, which is very interesting!
We also trolled the Facebook page and found that the page doesn’t allow fans to post content. Now if you label a brand has cracked social media then why has the brand blocked fans from talking? Isn’t it the basic rule of social media to allow two way communications? In addition to this, the article says that the brand interacts with the comments of fans but I have traced a week’s comments and I am yet to see the brand replying to genuine comments. According to Unmetric’s last month analysis, the brand has no interaction from the admin in terms of replying to fans.
The engagement levels are not that great and we did a comparative study with the brands that the article had selected and Cocoberry is no where matching the claims made by the article. According to Unmetric, Baskin Robbins has more localized fans i.e. from India talking with the brand in the last month. In this period only 2.1% Cocoberry fans were talking to the brand. I do know that “People Talking About Metrics” is not an accurate measure but right now this is the available metrics to be considered.
In terms of engagement, Cafe Coffee Day had better engagement with a score of 81 last month and Cocoberry had a score of 14.
Since social media doesn’t mean only Facebook so we also drilled the Twitter account of Cocoberry that has more than 643 followers. It is just pasting the same content as Facebook on Twitter. Twitter is a better conversation medium but the yogurt brand has decided not to speak with anyone. Guess Cocoberry wants to blow its trumpet only on social media and the author has failed to see this attribute.
According to Unmetric, the brand’s follower base has grown at a slower rate than the average Food/Beverage Twitter accounts.
I am open to listen to the author’s point of view and would be ready to do a counter post if he addresses all my concerns.
But for now it would be incorrect to say that Cocoberry has cracked social media. I don’t have any personal grudge with Cocoberry but we do expect better research and analysis from reputed sites like Forbes India and Firstpost when it makes bold claims.
Image Courtesy: Cocoberry Facebook page
Disclosure: Unmetric is an advertiser at Lighthouse Insights.