Build your brand on social media

Recently, a study was done of how people use social media, and the results might surprise you.

Nor should they be overlooked by marketers.

The Social Habit study, done by a team of social media experts and Edison Research, showed various interesting facts about social media and its usage, but I want to focus primarily on two points of data they provided and give you some insights that marketers need to know when it comes to social media marketing.


1) More and More People are Following Brands on Social Media

Brand-following behavior

Since 2010, the number of people that follow a brand or business on a social media network has doubled from 16% to 33%.

Whereas the trend is on such an upward direction, one can suspect that the number of people following a brand on a social media network will reach and surpass 50% in the next year or so.

A couple of takeaways that I see for marketers are:

  • People are willing and eager to connect with your brand on social media, don’t botch that opportunity
  • Social Media isn’t just about connecting with just friends and acquaintances anymore, it’s much, much more
  • Your customers don’t want to go to your company’s site to stay see what’s new, they want to stay updated and connected with your brand on their terms and on sites they use daily
  • Because of social media, more and more people are now dictating where and how they get their information; they no longer need to seek out the information they want; through social media, it will find them
  • If your company isn’t where the customer is, you’re missing the boat


2) More People are in it for the Right Reasons than You May Think

Why people follow brands on social media

Here’s another good-news chart for marketers.

A significant number of people follow your brand on social media sites because they like the content or company, not just because they are getting a coupon.

Yes, coupons & discounts are the number one reason for following a brand on social media, but not far off are a whole slew of good reasons that marketers should be ecstatic about.

My marketing takeaways here are:

  • Six of the 11 responses all fall into the “give me something of value” category; this just goes to prove the point that you need to deliver value in your posts
  • Don’t use your social media platforms just to sell or push more product; yes, the #1 reason people follow a brand on social media is for discounts & coupons, but I believe that falls into the category of “give me something of value”, not the “sell me something” category
  • Whereas there are a wide variety of reasons why people follow your brand on social media, don’t give them one category over and over again, give them everything; post a discount one day, a funny graphic the next, then a press release of a new product the following day, and after that, post pictures of your employees at your company’s annual community service day, so on and so forth, etc.

Moral of the story: If your brand isn’t on social media, get on quickly because the ship is sailing without you, and when you’re there, put yourselves in the customer’s shoes and ask “what’s in it for me?”, then give it to ’em.


-Lance Brown