It is often said that the marketers are a resurgent lot. They push their strategies to a certain benchmark and then evade it by their own choice. The Bhagvad Gita which says “nothing is permanent” is best suited for marketers. For them a ‘brand’ is not a product or a service but a perception created in the minds of people they serve! And perception changes like a blitzkrieg on the move!
So who holds the Blitzkriegas of now – Facebook or Twitter?
The first question is which one is better. “Each has its own strength,” said Harneet Singh, VP – Marketing, Dominos Pizza. “When it comes to mass reach, Facebook has far more users than Twitter. So, if I have to reach out to larger audience I will go for FB. But Twitter, though limited in reach, has got its own niche audience. Therefore, it is far more engaging and participative than FB,” he added.
His views were echoed by Manu Prasad, Head – Social Media, Myntra. “If I have to develop an instant buzz, I would go for Twitter. But on Facebook, our post is likely to be seen by 16 per cent of our fans, and hence it would be my preferred choice if I have to reach a larger audience,” he said.
But Manu Jain, Co-Founder, Jabong has a different view. “There is no comparison between the two. Promotion on Twitter is far easier than on FB. Hence, there is no question of RoI on Twitter. While FB is slightly complicated when it comes to promotions, a promotional tweet easily generates a lot of buzz for us,” he said.
Of late, the above brands were among top three trends on Twitter. They also have a viable presence on FB with Dominos garnering more than three million likes!
The market perception is such that though an active Twitter user is far more niche, intellectual and affluent than an average active FB user, the latter is more sustaining than the former.
“Twitter is very dynamic and instant,” said Jain of Jabong. “We are launching five different promotional properties in the form of ‘one month of love’ on Twitter. After the initial participative buzz, it may fade out but on FB we can regularly keep posting on our page,” he shared. “That is correct, added Singh. “We have not calculated and are still in hits and trial phase but our FB page has far more likes than our Twitter followers. Therefore, though it is less engaging, we can rely on FB when it comes to long-term campaigns,” he further said.
Both the platforms are in the experimental stage and are nascent in terms of market acceptability. “I am working with different organisations. While few use only Twitter, some bank on only Facebook while others use both. So it depends on the parameters. But if I were to put a finger on one of the two, I'd say Facebook,” shared Abhinav Sahai, Co-Founder, Niswey, a digital media marketing firm.
Some experts also believe that though Twitter is less reachable, it is a good source of crowd sourcing ideas. It is a good to and fro communication and brands get instant feedback.
“FB has an advantage i.e. the audience can be identified and fragmented depending on their age, demography, marital status, etc. This cannot happen with Twitter, which is a close-knit community,” said Sahai.
A market expert on social media stated, “A Twitter handle does not tell much about the individual. There are many duplicate profiles with a sole intention of bullying others – be it people, brands or governments. At the end, it’s a 140-character game. FB is far more versatile and people can be identified and then fragmented as per the marketer’s needs.”
Prasad of Myntra echoed, “On FB, due to fragmented audience, I can build my brand, take care of customers and eventually evangelise sales. This is not possible on Twitter always.”
So, in the end, it entirely depends on what you want. Longevity and fragmentation are commanded by FB, while Twitter can generate an instant and dynamic buzz. However, nothing is permanent here. A complete turnaround of the contemporary assumptions cannot be displaced to oblivion.