Do you Admire McDonald’s?

At Optimal, we built something we call the Optimal Index available for free at http://optimalsocial.com, which looks at over 5,200 global brands daily and provides a transparent assessment of how valuable their Facebook fan presences are. We do this by combining the raw size of the fan base with the engagement rate (“People Talking About This” as a percentage of that fan base size) and the global CPC which reflects the market pricing for the unique combination of the fans for that brand in each country. It’s a great measurement because it takes into account all of the factors like age of people, country they live in, and market valuation for that targeting segment.

We added something extra too, however, that is still in its infancy but we think is promising. It is this notion of “admiration” of a brand. Every brand has a profile page that aggregates information from their Facebook profile page and shows the historical data of how their engagement, fan growth and CPC has trended recently. You can click on the stars for each brand to indicate your degree of admiration for the company or product. This then in turn is published to your Facebook Timeline and is shown to your friends.

I think of “admire” as the business version of Like. I might admire a company because of how they treat their employees, or if they are carbon-neutral, or if they have a great stock, or I think they did a good job changing their strategy in the recession — whatever. Just as liking can reflect a lot of different underlying motivations and feelings, “admire” is a somewhat generic term but for me, just a little bit more businesslike in its potential application. So go ahead and explore the index and some of the brand pages – there are certainly some weird ones in amongst the more well-known brands. From the Olympic Games to the Onion and everything in between!

As for McDonald’s, some have lost a degree of admiration for them as a result of the “No Non-McD’s Fries at Olympic Venues” thing [the Sun article] (by the way fries and chips are not the same in my mind anyway!) and I agree it’s a bit silly but get over it! Sponsors like these allow us to see unprecedented amounts of (mostly free) coverage of the 2012 London Olympic Games on TV. Like it or not, advertising is here to stay and makes sporting events cheaper than they would be otherwise!