As American, and world wide, businesses begin to pull themselves back up from near devastating circumstances, it becomes increasingly critical that they begin to re-assess what is and what is not working with regard to their marketing. In some recently released research done by Chicago based social media analytics company, Sprout Social, the company went out to take the pulse of what may or may not work in the social media arena as the world begins to emerge and return to the attack. The following is taken directly from that recently published research:
- Sprout Social surveyed 1,000 social marketers about their social goals, challenges and expectations, and cross-referenced their responses with those of more than 1,000 consumers to understand how they behave online and what they expect from brands considered best-in-class on social. Although consumer behavior clearly indicates the business impact of social media, marketers still struggle to measure the return on investment (ROI). In fact, social marketers rank measuring ROI and supporting overall business goals among their top three challenges. While 56% of social marketers use data to better understand their target audience, only 23% use social data to measure ROI and 16% use social data for competitive insights, suggesting that the use of social data has not reached its full potential.
- Brand awareness remains a top priority. Sixty-nine percent of social marketers say increasing brand awareness is their number one goal for social media, while 52% percent say increasing web traffic is their top priority and 46% are focused on growing their audience.
- Engagement, transparency and customer service help brands stand out: When asked what makes a brand’s social presence best in class, consumers note that engagement with their audience (61%) is a top factor, along with transparency (45%) and strong customer service (44%).
- Today’s marketers invest in learning new skills: Out of the professional goals for social marketers, learning a new skill ranked as the primary objective for more than half of all marketers (51%), even outperforming getting a promotion (38%) or increasing influence internally (43%) across both practitioners and leaders.
- Visual social platforms are popular with younger consumers: Social platforms focused on photos and videos, like YouTube and Instagram, are quickly gaining traction among younger consumers. When asked which platforms they plan to use more of, 73% of members of Generation Z said Instagram while 65% said they plan to spend more time on YouTube.
- Consumers expect timely responses on social media: How quickly a brand responds on social media is important. Forty percent of consumers expect brands to respond within the first hour of reaching out on social media, while 79% expect a response in the first 24 hours. Response rates vary by industry, as real estate and legal rank the highest (29%), followed by recruiting & staffing (28%), finance & banking (28%) and healthcare (27%).
-Written by Kevin Sawyer