Social media and Black Friday

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It’s that time of year again: Thanksgiving is only a week away and Black Friday will follow pretty quickly, too. In today’s blog post, I wanted to highlight the impact of social media on one of the most profitable day of the year for most US companies. For the last few years, social media has revolutionized the way people shop online and Black Friday is no exception.

As you know, this “extreme shopping” day begins at midnight and shoppers line up in front of stores, just like Apple fans do when a new iPhone is coming out. So what has social media to do with Black Friday?

The way social media disrupts this yearly tradition is the way people shop. It has been a few years now and big brands take advantage of these platforms to attract their targeted audience well before Black Friday. There are two main trends: advertising of course, but also word of mouth on a national scale.

Targeted advertising is a great way to attract potential customers. And social networks play an essential role thanks to sponsored tweets and Facebook advertising for example. Brands don’t skimp on their budgets and unveil impressive bargains one by one days before Thanksgiving so on Black Friday, consumers already know what they will be buying. And according to a CBS interview, 65% of consumers shop according to ads posted on social media.

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Thanks to advertising and publications posted on social media, the conversation around Black Friday takes on amazing proportions. It is on everyone’s lips: what store has the best deals, what time are shops opening, what store has the most stock, etc.
According to Datasift, in 2012 5 states accounted for 40% of Twitter conversations on Black Friday and the trends are mainly lead by campaigns and impressive deals offered by Walmart.

In 2012, 247 million consumers went shopping during the Thanksgiving holiday, about half online on Black Friday. To learn more about the impact of social media on Thanksgiving, check out this infographic by Datasift:

DataSift-Infographics-blackfriday-660x2301

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