What Consumers Want to See From Brands on Social Media

What do consumers want from brands on social media? There is no simple answer to this question. It really depends on your audience, the social platform, and your brand personality. Sprout Social conducted a study that gives us more insight on this question.

Wendy’s infamous witty comments like the one below sparked curiosity about what followers want from bands’ social medias. The posts got the company a lot of publicity, but is it what Wendy’s customers wanted? The answer is probably not. Almost 90% of social media users in Sprout Social’s study found that making fun of customers is annoying rather than cool. I am definitely one of those people. Sass is usually not what I am looking for from company’s social media, although I have to admit it can be entertaining.

That’s not to say you should completely get rid of all humor and uniqueness on social media. Finding your company’s voice and consistently displaying your brand’s personality are important in connecting with consumers and further developing your brand. However, there is a fine line between funny and annoying that should never be crossed if you want a successful social media page. More than half of the participants in the study said the first thing they would do if a company annoyed them on social media is click unfollow, so stay away from the line.

Where is that line? It depends on a variety of factors like which social media outlet you are using and your audience. Facebook is the platform where the most users prefer brand personality, followed by YouTube, then Instagram.  It also depends on age. More millennials prefer brand personality than older generations on almost every platform, so keep your audience in mind. Some of the behaviors on social media that were mostly rated cool are  responding to questions, using video clips, and joining conversations. Using slang, talking about politics, and making fun of customers are all rated as mostly annoying in this study.

Of course, these are all general stats, and the responses may change depending on the industry or even the brand, so it is still all about knowing your specific audience and your goal. If the main goal is to get attention, Wendy’s proved that being snarky may be the right move. If your goal is to prompt consumers to purchase your product, being responsive on social media, offering promotions, providing educational content, and sharing interesting visuals are rated as the best ways to do that.

When deciding how you want to represent your brand on social media, remember to consider the platform, your audience, and your goal. It is all about finding a balance of how to showcase the brand’s personality while still being useful to your followers.

Story by: Emma