Use of Advertising on Facebook in the UK Market Research Proposal

Pages: 12 (4255 words)  ·  Bibliography Sources: 20  ·  File: .docx  ·  Level: Master's  ·  Topic: Business - Advertising

¶ … Advertising on Facebook in the UK Market

Facebook is highly popular in the UK market today, just as it is in many other areas of the world. That has not always been the case, because Facebook has not been a social media tool for that long. In addition, when it first came out it was only for colleges in the United States. Because of its extreme popularity with college kids, the service expanded to include anyone who wanted to join so that they could connect with friends and family all around the world. MySpace was the popular social media platform (and virtually the only one available) when Facebook first came out, but MySpace quickly faded into the background because Facebook was liked better by the majority of people who used it. Many of them switched away from MySpace and started using Facebook exclusively. Others used both or simply left their profile up on MySpace and checked it periodically.

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Originally, there were not as many things on Facebook as there are currently. There were fewer people, but there were also fewer businesses and advertisements. Pages were not part of the mix in the early days, and people did not advertise their products or services. Now, it seems as if just about the entire world is on Facebook in some capacity, and that extends to businesses as well as individual people. There are Facebook pages for people's children and animals, for legitimate businesses, for books, for causes, and for other items. Despite Facebook's TOS that states people have to use their real names and they cannot create pages unless they are legitimately affiliated with the industry, organization, or item the page is about, there are many pages on Facebook that are questionable in some way. Another thing that Facebook has been experimenting with is advertising. How people feel about having ads on their Facebook page is something to explore.

Research Proposal on Use of Advertising on Facebook in the UK Market Assignment

Advertising on Facebook is often market-specific in that there are many different places in the world where Facebook is used. If the company does not market to those people in a way that they can accept, with products and services that they want, there would be little point to advertising, at all. This is particularly significant in the UK market, because Facebook has a large presence in the UK and many people there use it to keep in touch with others and to read about their favorite businesses and services. With that in mind, it is important to consider what would b the best way for Facebook to market to the UK and how that marketing should be undertaken so that it will be handled in a way with which the UK audience feels comfortable and to which that audience responds. The UK market is different from the U.S. market or other markets throughout the world, and cultural differences matter greatly where advertising is concerned. It is not just about advertising on Facebook per se, but about how to advertise to the market correctly - and both of these issues should be considered.

Literature Review

There are two specific areas that have to be addressed for this literature review - Facebook and advertising. Both of these need to be examined from a UK perspective in the study, but that is not a requirement for the literature review. There have not been significant studies about this issue, but there are many studies about the value of Facebook and there are virtually countless studies regarding how companies market and advertise their products. Those are the areas on which this literature review will touch, beginning with the value that Facebook appears to have for a large number of consumers in the UK, U.S., and many other countries across the globe. Facebook is not without its troubles and aggravations, but there is much to be enjoyed about the service, as well.

College students were the first to use Facebook, but now it seems as though just about everyone uses the service. There is an age requirement, but many parents skirt around that and get accounts for their children (Klaassen, 2009). They also get accounts under false names, or they get accounts for their pets - both of which are against the TOS of Facebook but are not often removed unless they are causing a problem or they are reported multiple times. Recently, an addition to Facebook has been the ability to purchase credits that can be used to run ads on the site (Womack, 2011; Klaassen, 2009). This has been met with limited success and varied opinions, but it remains an integral part of the site at this time. Facebook sees the value of selling advertising space on the site, because it is such a large platform and people who buy ad space there can get noticed, which means revenue for Facebook (Klaassen, 2009). In addition, companies see the value of buying ads on Facebook because they see that they can make money by getting their name in front of customers and getting those people to click to see what they have to offer.

Advertising on Facebook is similar to advertising on other media, and the same kinds of marketing and advertising principles should apply (Womack, 2011; Klaassen, 2009). That is important to remember when a business is contemplating purchasing ad space on Facebook. For any company that is considering this, the most important things to consider are the same things that are considered with any other marketing or advertising campaign: the target market for the product or service, and the proper message to convey the right information to that target market. Both are vital. There is little point to reaching out to people who will not be interested in the product or service the company has to offer, but there is also little point in reaching out to people if the message given to them is not one to which they would be receptive (Womack, 2011; Klaassen, 2009). That can be worse, because changing the message later may not be effective, and it is possible that those potential customers will be lost forever.

The first thing that companies must do when they decide they are going to focus on advertising on Facebook is ensure that they are reaching the proper target market. They may assume that Facebook users are their target market, but which Facebook users? They are not all the same, and there are many different demographic groups that use the site for a wide variety of reasons (Womack, 2011). When Facebook is seen as a cross-section of society it makes more sense to marketers because they realize that they still have to focus on a particular market instead of focusing only on "Facebook users" (Womack, 2011; Klaassen, 2009), That large of a group should never be seen as a target market, because they are so very different from one another in so many ways. Facebook has basic demographic information about its users, and companies that are going to market their products on Facebook will want to take advantage of any information that Facebook will give them, so that they can better tailor their ads to the right group of people (Womack, 2011; Klaassen, 2009).

Once they have selected a target market that they are going to market to on Facebook, the next main issue for any business is to focus on the message that they wish to present to that target market (Cavusgil, Zou, & Naidu, 1993; Delagneau, 2004; Ewen, 1976). People who are new to marketing do not always understand the value of that, but there are many studies and books that have been written about the need for people who are marketing a product or service to get the proper message out to their potential customers (Hofstede, Steenkamp, & Wedel, 1999). The wrong message not only stops people from buying the product or service that that time, but it may also turn people off completely to the point that they are no longer interested in buying from that company at all. That is especially true if the message is offensive culturally or in some other way.

No matter what country a company is focusing on for marketing, that company must consider culture and other significant factors in its marketing and advertising strategy (Hofstede, Steenkamp, & Wedel, 1999). Culture is vital to decisions that relate to any kind of marketing, so a company that does not consider culture has to stop and take into account the fact that it may be missing something important, to which its potential customers would respond. Overall, there are no easy ways to ensure that culture is completely understood, and a culture needs to be carefully studied. Reading about a particular culture and exposing oneself to that culture are both important ways in which a company can gain a better understanding about what matters to the culture and what is considered valuable (Kanso, 1992; King, 1990).

Facebook sells ads that are pay per click, meaning that… [END OF PREVIEW] . . . READ MORE

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