What Makes a Consumer a Fan?

This is a guest post from Tuhin Roy, Co-founder of Fanzy. I met Tuhin at one of my events in London and, I see a lot of Facebook...

Fanzy Tiesto Page

This is a guest post from Tuhin Roy, Co-founder of Fanzy. I met Tuhin at one of my events in London and, I see a lot of Facebook apps, but I think he’s onto something. See if you agree.

Have you ever been perplexed to see someone walking down the street wearing a t-shirt with a loud image of their favorite brand? I’ve often wondered at what point the consumer crosses the Rubicon and becomes a “fan” of the brand rather than a mere “buyer.”

And yet, nearly all of us make that leap at some point. Nearly all of us have those products or services that we feel reflect who we are. These are the brands that we are proud to wrap ourselves in. These are the products that we market to our friends and families simply through our enthusiasm for being associated with them.

A key task of online social marketing is to find this group of brand “fans” and to enlist them in the effort to spread the word. Facebook and Twitter inherently help in this endeavor. By liking a Facebook Page or following a brand on Twitter, consumers make the first steps towards becoming “fans” of the brand. They have signaled that they wish to stay in touch.

But, until recently, there have been a lack of tools to figure out which Facebook likers and Twitter followers are the true fans, and, among these, which are the most likely to spread the word.

A big part of the problem is that while Facebook users may like a brand’s Page, they reveal little about themselves in doing so. Understanding a consumer’s level of commitment, influence and potential to spread the word requires that they share more of their social sphere. On Facebook, this only happens when consumers install an application and grant access to their personal profiles.

While social gaming has been great at getting Facebook users to make that leap, brands have been much less successful. This is where we feel we’ve made some real progress here at Fanzy since launching our beta Facebook App in May. Fanzy rewards fans for spreading the word and for other social activity around brands. By gamifying the experience of being a social fan, we have won the trust of nearly 200,000 influential consumers on Facebook. These Fanzy members are sharing their social fan activity with us and our brand partners on a minute to minute basis.

The data that fans share with us enables us to learn a lot about their level of influence, engagement and ability to drive results. Using our proprietary influence measurement, the FanScore, and the Fanzy Rewards Builder our brand partners can now target individual rewards and offers to sub-segments of their social fan bases based on levels of influence and specific social achievements (like sharing a viral video and getting lots of comments on it).

A great example of this is a campaign recently launched by social media agency The Big Other to develop the social presence for a new UK television show, Movie Kingdom. The show has just launched a Facebook Page which, at the time of my writing this, had a total of only 396 likes. By adding Fanzy to the Page and offering rewards of exclusive movie previews to any Fanzy member who has achieved a badge for social sharing, Movie Kingdom has attracted 323 influential Fanzy members to the Movie Kingdom Fanzy. These 323 Movie Kingdom Fanzy members in turn have a total reach on Facebook of 156,524 Facebook users and have already generated a significant number of posts, comments, likes, tweets and retweets around links to the TV show’s YouTube page and website.

With larger pages, Fanzy has proven absolutely explosive. Tiesto, a super-star DJ with over 10 million fans on Facebook, used Fanzy to promote his recent album launch. In addition to other rewards, Tiesto offered to play a private party for his most influential Fanzy fan. The promotion generated more than 800,000 social mentions in 6 weeks.

With Fanzy and other new social loyalty apps, marketers can, for the first time, find and energize their most committed social fans. I like to say its like figuring out which buyers will wear your brand’s t-shirt and giving them one that is just the right fit.

For more information on Fanzy visit www.fanzy.me or to try out our Facebook App.

About Tuhin Roy

Prior to co-founding Fanzy, Tuhin founded the Digital Rights Agency, a digital distribution company whose partners included Apple, Microsoft, Verizon and Amazon.com. Through a series of mergers, the company is now known as the Orchard. He served in various senior management positions and on the company’s public company board of directors, helping build the company to $50+M in revenue.

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  1. Carla Borelli Reply

    Wow, sounds the holy grail for unlocking fan engagement. Can Fanzy be effective for brands outside of entertainment?

  2. Tuhin Roy Reply

    Thanks for the comment Carla.  Fanzy has been super effective for brands outside entertainment.  We are on pages for brands ranging from Smirnoffs to Hotels.com to professional sports teams like the Sacramento Kings.  Of the more than 10,000 pages already using Fanzy, less than 30% are entertainment brands.  What is so interesting–and part of what I was trying to capture in the post–is that the truly committed fans of brands can be every bit as powerful for brands as they are for entertainers.

  3. Olivia Reply

    Hey there, I think your website might be having browser compatibility issues.

    When I look at your blog in Ie, it looks fine but when opening in Internet Explorer, it has some overlapping.
    I just wanted to give you a quick heads up!

    Other then that, fantastic blog!

    1. Luke Brynley-Jones Reply

      Thanks Olivia – we’ll look into that!