Is Your Brand In The Social Media Inner Circle?

Market Research Insights

Consumers follow an average of five brands on social media platforms, based on Cone Inc.’s research. At first blush, marketers may think that this number seems low but consider today’s time-strapped world where consumers have limited bandwidth for more information. What does this research mean for your social media marketing and how do your become one of the “in” brand crowd? To find out, let’s look deeper at Cone’s findings.

Consumers use a mix of digital communications options to engage with brands and/or companies. Top on the list are websites (63%), email (62%) and social networks (38%). Further, one out of three consumers interacts with brands and/or companies on social media platforms two or more times a week. While consumers are willing to have an on-going relationship with a brand and/or company, it’s important to give consumers a choice of where they interact with you.

When trying to attract new consumers on social media, meet their needs. Overwhelmingly, they’re looking for promotional offers in a variety of flavors (free products, discounts and coupons). Additionally, consumers want help solving problems and using your products. This translates to more information and customer service. Lastly, they want to be heard in terms of being asked for their feedback and input on products and services.

Here are the top five characteristics that Cone found among shoppers wanting to associate with your brand and/or company on social media platforms:

  1. Is more aware of brand and/or company.
  2. Is more likely to share brand and/or company information.
  3. Feel stronger connection with brand and/or company.
  4. Feel better served if have a social media conversation.
  5. Is more likely to purchase from the brand and/or company.

To use these insights to craft your social media marketing, engage prospective customers and become part of their inner circle, here‘re five tips.

  1. Show me the money. On social media networks, consumers are looking for savings. So give them what they want and provide an assortment of options. Further, don’t forget to do your math since, the better these offers are, the more that they’ll be shared. Also, consider how social media promotions are coordinated with your promotions on other marketing platforms and special offers to your better customers. Copywriting, call-to-action and promotional codes are critical.
  2. Help me out. Consumers may need assistance using your products. Make it easy for them to get help across channels. This translates to offering useful information with step-by-step instructions and broadening your customer service touch points.
  3. Don’t make me think. Make it easy for prospects and customers to find you on social networks as well as to join your group. Leverage the fact that they’re using multiple channels and cross-pollinate your message across your marketing communications.
  4. Let’s get together. Allow consumers to engage with you and each other wherever they wish to. Offer them options to get your message—be it on social networks, your website or email. Also, make it easy for them to share the message with their social graph, the people that they’re connected to on social networks. This helps to disseminate your message more broadly.
  5. Demonstrate your love. Consumers want to be heard. Show that you’re interesting in what they have to say. This is an important aspect of any relationship. Therefore, ask them how they feel about your offering. You can do this with comments, emailings, ratings and reviews, or polls on your Facebook group.

When creating your social media marketing initiatives, put your consumer and her needs first. Take into consideration what she’s looking for and you can help solve her problems. This will go a long way to putting you at the heart of her social media circle.

If you have any suggestions as to how to use social media marketing to help reach potential shoppers, please add them in the comments section below.

Happy marketing,
Heidi Cohen

Photo credit:  lostintheredwoods via Flickr

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