Friends of Friends: What Are They Worth On Social Networks?

A client is considering a social marketing campaign to increase their friend count on Facebook by offering existing “friends” and “fans” a prize to the person who refers the most new friends.

My questions regarding this type of social marketing plan are as follows:

1. What are friends of friends worth on social networks – now or later – something or nothing?

2. Do friends of friends have potential value to the business vis-a-vis direct future sales or not?

3. If so,  how do you know?

4. Or does the addition of friends of friends in the friend or fan network in and of itself – whether now or later – produce value to the business and its brand?

5. If so, how is the “value” to the business calculated?

While there are obvious reasons for being widely known, at some point adding friends of friends via social networks must surely yield produce diminished returns.

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