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Why do people follow a brand on social networks

(A hint: discounts matter)

  • Key4Communications

Deals and discounts are the main reason why consumers follow brands on social networks, according to a research by Disruptive Communications among 1,000 UK consumers. 44.5% of women and 36.5% of men cite this reason to explain why they want to be aware of the activity of their favorite companies.

But this is not the only reason. 25.6% of women and 22.6% of men say that entertaining and fun contents are a good reason to click on the "Like" button. For women aged 18 to 34 years this is in fact the main reason, with 34.8% of respondents, beating discounts, with 30.4% of answers. This is the only group in which this factor is the most important.

The percentages drop to around 15% when it comes to be informed about the news of the brand and its products, or to get help and practical information. The last reason cited, with less than 10% of respondents, is the ability to give feedback to the company.

The data reinforces the usual ideas about the strategy to be followed by companies when present in social networks:

- Deals are the most direct way to attract followers.
- Firms need to provide content beyond their activity and offer.
- Companies must be less bureaucratic and less about business - that is, fun and close.
- It is important to answer to opinions and questions from users - social media is not the preferred channel for complaints and doubts, but it is complementary and, also, public.

Obviously this will change depending on the company. An aspirational brand (eg, Ferrari), may have many "Likes" on Facebook from people who is simply fond of sports cars. And suppliers such as telecommunications companies or internet service providers should expect a higher number of complaints from clients. Also and despite this horizontal structure of social networks, a toy company can (and should) be a lot more fun than a bank.

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