How 500 Card & Gift Companies are using Facebook

Exclusive industry research from Card & Gift Network.

Last year I began to research how card and gift companies promote themselves online. My aim was to use the information discovered to help make marketing easier for designers, makers and retailers in the industry.
The first set of research found that one of the most popular forms of online promotion was social media marketing.

76% of companies surveyed had at least one social media profile on their website.

My next set of research has naturally taken me to look at social media closer, starting with Facebook.

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My earlier research shows that top of all the social media channels for the industry is Facebook. 71% of the 642 card & gift companies surveyed have a Facebook page for their business.

This gave me 455 companies I could research. Sadly, the technology to analyse Facebook performance isn’t perfect and not all of the pages could be tested. I was also keen to review a nice round number of participants; so I extended my search, looking at 609 pages, which was enough to give me results for 500 company pages.

The following is a breakdown of my findings.

Likes

The most noticeable factor for any business on Facebook is the number of “likes” or fans following the page.

The research here showed that over half of the companies reviewed (52%) had less than 1,000 likes.

This indicates that while many greetings & gift businesses have a company page, their reach on the platform may be limited.

  • Less than 1000 likes 52% 52%
  • 1000-4999 likes 31% 31%
  • 5,000-19,999 12% 12%
  • 20,000-99,999 4% 4%
  • Over 100,000 likes 1% 1%

Growth

Next, I looked at the growth rate in the number of fans. Measuring how many fans the pages had won/lost in the previous month.

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NO GROWTH OR LOST FOLLOWERS

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LESS THAN 5% GROWTH

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5-99% GROWTH

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OVER 100% GROWTH

The majority showed a fan growth between 0% and 5%. This could indicate that reaching fans on Facebook isn’t easy.

Card and Gift Companies are Informative.

Company information is a key aspect of a Facebook business profile. Providing the first impression for potential customers and collaborators. The research showed the companies in the greeting card and gift industries are very good at supplying this introductory information.

cover photo

99% of the card & gift companies reviewed had a cover photo.

b

about info

99% of companies surveyed had shared a company description.

username

98% of the companies had branded their pages with a username.

cover photo

99% of the companies had linked their page to a website.

68% of card and gift companies like 10 or more other pages on Facebook.

Card & Gift Companies are a Little Quiet.

how often are card and gift companies posting to Facebook?

The research showed that the majority of card & gift companies post content to their page; just 10% weren’t posting at all. Looking at the 450 companies that were adding content, the majority (55%) were posting daily, averaging 0.76 posts per day. The remaining 45% were posting weekly and averaging 0.91 posts per week.

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AVERAGe 0.76 POSTS PER DAY

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AVERAGe 0.91 POSTS PER WEEK

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404 of the card and gift companies reviewed (that’s 81%) were analysed as ‘needs to post content more often’. Just 4 were posting too much!

The Industry Loves Images.

what are companies posting?

photos

90% were posting images.

videos

65% were posting videos.

links

36% were posting links.
z

updates

8% were posting statuses.

While photos were a hugely popular format for posts I was delighted to see a high percentage of card & gift businesses using video; a content format that is becoming increasingly important in online marketing.

Card and gift companies average 2 different types of content in their posts.

Greetings & Giftware Companies are Good Communicatiors (usually).

how well are companies interacting with fans?

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RESPOND FREQUENTLY TO FANS

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RESPOND PROMPTLY TO QUERIES

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HAVE UNANSWERED POSTS

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An impressive 92% of the card and gift companies surveyed let their fans communicate with them and post on their timeline.

Card & Gift Companies Need to be a Little More Sociable.

what does the industry need to do to improve?

engage more

41% need to create more engaging posts for their followers.

improve your timing

62% of companies reviewed had timing that was slightly or way off.

make friends

38% need to reach out to friends and customers to become fans.

ask questions

52% need to ask more questions to encourage interaction.

What Does the Research Tell Us?

The research into how card and gift companies are using Facebook was incredibly interesting; combined with future research, which will look at other social platforms and then other forms of marketing I think it gives key pointers on how our industry can make the most of online marketing opportunities.

The figures show that although the industry is brilliant at sharing basic information they need to get a little better at updating that information via content posts. Similarly, they’re shown to be top of the class in answering queries through Facebook, but there is still room for improvement in reaching out and interacting with fans before they get in touch.

I can understand why Facebook is not the most active form of marketing for card & gift companies. It takes a lot of time to develop; it often seems hard to reach people and difficult to engage them. I do think however that it does have potential and is worth a little of your marketing time.

Despite recent news items and general privacy concerns with the platform currently, Facebook has value for our industry as a marketing tool. In the coming weeks, I will be adding resources to the Business Hub, which will help businesses make the most of Facebook so keep your eyes peeled for updates.

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