Branding on Social Media

From supermarkets to clothing retailers and TV stations to restaurants, brands have been getting on the social media wagon. Even the Cadbury’s Crème Egg has a Facebook page of its own. All this is for good reason. According to Ofcom’s study on media use in the UK, 86% of adults access the internet and nearly three quarters of these people maintain a social media profile.  That’s a big audience out there and brands have embraced this new media to engage their consumers. It’s easy enough to sign up but the hard part is figuring out which platform to use and how to create relevant content. These are key factors when making an investment in social media marketing. 

 Research from Headstream’s survey shows half of the respondents welcome interaction with a brand on Facebook. This is especially true of respondents 45 years and older who don’t have a strong presence in other platforms. Twitter is in second place, especially those 44 years old and under. Adults aged 18-34 also welcome brand engagement on Instagram. But in a medium where consumers hold the power to shut companies out of their feeds with a button, social managers have their work cut out for them. 

A Social@Ogilvy study points companies in a helpful direction by suggesting that brands target promoters or those people who have a higher influence in social media and who go beyond just liking or sharing content. The research shows that while over half of UK respondents are sharers, only 15% are true brand promoters. These are users who like being associated with the brand, regularly mention the brand in comments and posts, and are active participants in brand events. By identifying and recruiting these promoters, you start small but achieve a greater impact. 

An example of this strategy at work is seen in cosmetic companies inviting content creators on YouTube to sponsored vacations or collaborating with them to create new products. Earlier this year, Benefit Cosmetics invited a group of YouTube beauty gurus and lifestyle vloggers to experience the Bahamas. These YouTubers went on to make travel diaries, vlogs, and product reviews; content easily accessible and shared by their channel subscribers. 

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