Online ticket seller Eventbrite recently published a study that claims that sharing in social media can be quantified with a dollar amount. They boldly claim that their report, “Social Commerce: A First Look at the Numbers,” is the “first tangible data to quantify the value and impact of social media in driving eCommerce.” I don’t know if I completely buy either concept, but let’s take a look.
Eventbrite put together a series of tools that allowed them to look at ticket sales of a particular event before and after the event was shared on Facebook, Twitter and by email. What they found was that ticket sales rose proportionally to the number of times the event was shared between friends. Boiling it all down, they figured that Facebook was worth an average of $2.52 per share while Twitter was only worth .43. Email came in second highest at $2.34.
Across the board, Eventbrite says that social media sharing accounted for an extra $1.78 per incident compared to sales on events that weren’t shared in this manner. They also found that sharing was the best way to drive traffic back to their website with an average of 7 visits for each “share.”
I’m not surprised that sharing raises dollars or traffic. We know that peer-to-peer communication is an effective way of promoting any product. I’ve bought tickets to events I wouldn’t have known about had it not been for a post from a friend, so I know it works. I don’t know that it’s as easy to quantify as Eventbrite makes it sound. The large discrepancy between Facebook and Twitter is interesting, too. Why such a gap? Is it that a Facebook post can be graphical and thus more eye catching? Is it the fact that the post stays in view longer where a Twitter tweet is here and gone too soon? And look at email, coming in a close second. Frankly, I’m surprised to see that people are still email recommendations to each other. It’s rather “two tin cans and a string” compared to the ease of sharing on Facebook, isn’t it?
But even if these numbers only apply to Eventbrite’s ticket service, it’s good news all around. It’s proof of what many of us are seeing but haven’t tried to quantify – that social media is an excellent marketing tool that can raise your bottom line every time someone mentions your product online.