In January 2014, consulting and technology firm Infosys conducted an independent study to learn some key factors about how consumers interact with brands on social media and on websites.
The study produced a variety of interesting findings and argued that consumers engage with retailers on Facebook more than they do with retailer websites and nine in ten consumers say how much they spend is impacted by their social media engagement with a brand.
Even if your brand is reaching for different goals by utilizing social media, such as recruiting employees or driving brand awareness rather than purchases, these statistics are useful to know. It means that social media is an opportunity for your business to have a voice and a personality. Most importantly, rather than existing in a solo social media bubble, it means that social media is the perfect chance to interact with likeminded businesses and lifestyle partners to attract customers to your brand.
What does this mean? Well, when you strip social media down to its very core, it’s about communication with customers and other people, brands, and places. Communication is key to any good social media strategy, and this includes interacting with others as well as posting content on your own page or pages.
The interesting thing about this is that it was just in 2011 that Facebook made it possible for business page admins to like other business pages and comment on other walls as a company, not as a person. 2011 is also when it became possible to view newsfeeds from a company page and utilize Facebook algorithmic recommendations of other pages to “like” based on your current choices.
Not nearly enough businesses take advantage of this opportunity to digitally network. In terms of basic reasoning, it makes sense to like and comment on other pages or brands as a way to establish your own page and following. Example: if you’re a nonprofit working with food shelters in Omaha, it makes sense to interact with and “like” the pages of businesses in your immediate geographical area, comment on the posts of vendors or volunteers, and like photos or posts from relevant government institutions or other nonprofits with the same goals as you.
This will put your name out there and increase the possibility that someone interested in the same topics clicks on your Facebook page and chooses to follow you! More importantly, being a part of the conversation will be instrumental to growing your brand and establishing yourself as an expert in any given field.
This is something for marketers to use wisely, not scroll down their newsfeed liking every post on there or favoriting every tweet. Use this strategically to begin and be a part of conversations and utilize audiences and groups that already exist–and just may not know about you yet. Have fun with it, and who knows? Your team can grow, learn, and be inspired by the community social media creates on a daily basis.