Burning out? What consumers really want to see on social media

With more and more brands and pages appearing on social media, there is more content available now than ever before. In principle, there is nothing wrong with this; however, the way that this development has happened has left people with a lack of content that they actually want to see and engage with.

There is too much useless information that they do not wish to see and not enough good quality and interesting content. As a result, people are growing tired and sceptical of traditional branded social media output.

Running alongside this, and perhaps fueling it to some extent, is the difference between the content marketers want to push and the content that social media users want to see. According to Sprout Social, 72% of consumers said that they wanted information regarding sales and discounts and 60% wanted information about new products. This is in stark contrast to marketers and social media managers, 61% of whom think that the consumer wants to be taught something in social posts and 58% think consumers want posts that tell a story.

What all of this boils down to is that people are not engaging with a lot of the social media content that brands are pushing out, especially as the public’s trust in big business has not truly recovered from the 2008 financial crash. Given the current place we are in regarding the relationship of brands and consumers on social media, what do these brands need to do next?

The primary thing brands have to do is to rebuild trust. It is all well and good to make this claim, and few would deny it, but it is far harder to actually repair this relationship. To go about rebuilding trust is hard. The first step to doing this should be to produce content that people want to see. If 72% of consumers want to see sales and discount information, give them this type of content. Likewise, if 60% of them want information on new product, make content for this. If you produce content people want to see they are far more likely to engage with your brand over social media. This is especially important when 96% of people who discuss a brand online will not actually follow that brand’s own page. Producing the content, they want will compel them to follow your page.

Rebuild trust by engaging with people on social channels rather than using these channels to broadcast to people. Broadcasting will inevitably have a larger audience; yet, this is of no use if the content will be ignored and passed over. You have to engage with people. This could be as simple as responding to their messages that they might send you. If you want to become more involved, start replying to their comments and liking their posts. The more you engage, the more you will increase the perception of your brand as personable. Appearing more human will, in turn, make your brand seem more trustworthy.

Social media accounts are essential for brands today. However, brands must be wary of how they use them. Creating disengaging content will take time and not be worth the effort as it will make people disinterested in your brand. If you give them what they want, however, and engage with them, they will start to engage back and, eventually, begin to trust businesses’ social account again.

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