Starbucks Tops 10 Million Facebook Fans

A year ago, Starbucks knocked off Coca-Cola as the most popular corporate brand on Facebook, with its page on the social network drawing 3.7 million fans. Now the coffee giant has become the first brand to clear the 10 million-fan mark on Facebook, with its nearest rivals, Coke and Skittles, both trailing behind at about 6.5 million.

To put Starbucks' social ascent in perspective, the company is close to catching up to pop icon Lady Gaga in Facebook fans. She's just ahead in the rankings, with about 10.4 million, according to data compiled by the Inside Facebook blog. Only other celebrities (Michael Jackson, Vin Diesel), games ("Texas Hold'em Poker," "Mafia Wars"), "Family Guy," Facebook, and the President himself, stand ahead of Starbucks in the number of Facebook fans.

So what's the secret of the coffee chain's success on the site? Making social media a key part of its marketing mix, a steady stream of promotions, and advertising heavily on Facebook to drive traffic to its page, according to social media marketing experts.

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