Wednesday, December 4, 2013

Distinguishing FB Friends from FB Trolls

Suppose part of your marketing campaign involves creating a Facebook page to engage in social media marketing but you many of the comments are from disgruntled customers who constantly complain about your product. If you are Burger King Norway, you entice them to go away, e.g. "unfriend" you, by offering them your competitor's product for free.
Those who wanted the giveaway had to agree not to join the new Facebook page, receiving their voucher for a Big Mac plus a signed goodbye letter from Burger King in exchange.

About 1,000 accepted the vouchers but even more left.
Burger King lost 30,000 followers as a result, but says its new fan base of 8,000 are more engaged and interact with the brand in a more positive way.

Losing 29,000 to get rid of 1,000 may seem like a steep price to pay. Perhaps the 8,000 remaining are more likely to post something positive which will show up in all of their friends' news feeds. If the 29,000 who left without the voucher were not "engaged," perhaps there was no ongoing flow of posts in their friends' news feeds to lose.


  1. Quality not quantity. Less is more. You don't need a 1,000 customers, you just need the right customer. When I was looking to start my financial advising business, I asked seasoned advisers what they would have done differently. Most said they would have avoided accepting low valued AUM clients. This was because, later, they were unable to discard clients like Burger King. It is a people business after all. Those low asset clients, in a way, conducted post-investment hold-up against the financial advisers. I guess the advisers should have taken more economics and less equity market theory.

  2. "I will gladly pay you Tuesday for a hamburger today." Smart man, that J. Wellington Wimpy...

  3. Distinguishing FB Friends from FB Trolls.

    Too many changes on Face Book, it used to be lots of fun. Peeking on the lives of the unwelcomed. The Internet was fair game; anything you post will be seen by the entire world. We have all become start of our own sitcom where we are the author.

    I often wonder about all the birthday wishes people receive (I received three birthday wishes on FB this year). And, what’s up with the hundreds of thumbs up people get on really pathetic quotes that they have copied! Yes copied, and who knows if its true or not, these days I can’t tell what is real from fiction.

    One true fact is that bad information travel at the speed of light, one day you have hundreds of friends your'e the star and the next day, your out. Still scratching your head trying to figure out what went wrong.

    One movie comes to mind “ Jerry Maguire” “ Jerry a sports agent, expressed his new philosophy – he thought an agent should be less concerned about money and more concerned about their clients”. This didn’t go well for JM, he was fired on the spot. And it wasn’t until that moment when JM learned who his real friends were. Like many people on FB, JM thought he had thousands of close friends, but in the end only TWO stood by him and the office fish, which he took on his way out. The two whom stood by JM were worth their weight in gold and made up for all the others that disappeared” (

    Burger King made a smart strategic move, most all of their followers are loyal consumers whom care about the brand and will promote, defend, and market the product in a positive manner. Just like the two friends that followed JM as he started his own new venture.

    Ian, you are correct that it’s all about quality and not the quantity and yes less is more. FB is all about making spontaneous decision with uncertainty, which makes life much more complicated.