Brands on social media: Consumers value service over attitude

by | May 31, 2017 | Social Media

Whether they’re daring customers or trolling competitors, many brands are showcasing bolder personalities on social—and reaping the rewards of increased engagement and media attention. But aside from increased impressions, what impact does that sass have on their overall brand perception and, most importantly, customer relationships?

New research from biz-focused social media management platform Sprout Social reveals that a snarky brand personality only appeals to a third of consumers, while being friendly and helpful will charm about 80 percent of them. Furthermore, 88 percent of consumers are annoyed when brands make fun of followers, and 67 percent feel the same way about brands making fun of competitors.

The Q2 2017 Sprout Social Index delves into what other personality traits and behaviors consumers are actually looking for from brands—and what will turn them away completely.

brands on social media

Other insights from the report include:

Keep politics to a minimum

Seven in 10 consumers find it annoying when brands take part in political conversations on social.

Actions speak louder than words

Nearly half (48 percent) of consumers are more inclined to purchase from brands that interact with consumers on social.

Consumers love varied formats for social content

83 percent think videos are cool and 60 percent want to see GIFs.

Humor doesn’t correlate to sales

While it may grab you a few laughs, only 36 percent of consumers said humor on social will make them more likely to buy from a brand.

If your audience is younger, have more leeway on Instagram

Millennials want to see brand personality 75 percent more on Instagram, as compared to other age groups.

Despite wanting helpfulness, customers are left in the dark

It still takes brands an average of 11 hours to respond to inbound messages – a full hour more than they had to wait a year ago.

“With all the praise and media attention given to daring social brands, it can be tempting to jump on the bandwagon,” said Scott Brandt, CMO of Sprout Social, in a news release “However, developing a brand personality needs to be a thoughtful and tailored process that starts with truly understanding who your audience is and what they’re looking for. When a majority of your consumers would rather see you be helpful than funny, craft your content accordingly.”

Read the complete report here.

brands on social media

Richard Carufel
Richard Carufel is editor of Bulldog Reporter and the Daily ’Dog, one of the web’s leading sources of PR and marketing communications news and opinions. He has been reporting on the PR and communications industry for over 17 years, and has interviewed hundreds of journalists and PR industry leaders. Reach him at richard.carufel@bulldogreporter.com; @BulldogReporter


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