In order to get the ball rolling Facebook and Walmart put together a massive mobile Facebook ad campaign on Thanksgiving Day and the two days afterwards according to an article by InternetRetailer.
In the end Wal-Mart posted 50 million mobile ads on the social network over the 72 hours. The campaign attracted more than 100,000 comments on Wal-Mart’s Facebook wall as sales on specific items that the retailer wanted to promote popped up in Facebook users’ newsfeeds. The retailer also accumulated an additional 164,000 fans over the three days.
Even though the retailer won’t comment on whether or not the as was a success, it did say it had its best Black Friday sales day ever and is in works for planning Black Friday 2013. It also won’t say if it is planning any big mobile Facebook campaigns in the near future.
According to InternetRetailer, Walmart did say that working closely with Facebook enabled it to quickly change ads to more heavily promote items that weren’t selling as well as expected—and that the strategy helped sell out some slow-moving goods.
In a Deloitte survey, nearly half (48%) of consumers said they expected to use social media to help them make decisions regarding holiday shopping—researching ideas, gathering info about discounts, and so on. When a survey from BDO asked retailer chief marketing executives how they’d be promoting their holiday campaigns, 99% said they’d be using Facebook. The experts at Adobe Digital Marketing, meanwhile, have predicted that social media referrals to retail sites would double this holiday season, compared to that of 2011.
Walmart marketing chief Stephen Quinn told the Wall Street Journal that he “never saw this level of engagement” coming as a result of any other digital ad initiative. But it’s unclear whether the campaign yielded stronger sales.
Engagement is measured by things like how the ads attracted comments from people who presumably saw them, whether or not the ads led to just comments and likes or actually motivated people to shop at Walmart is unknown.