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Social Media Payoff for Brands, but 'Friends' Finicky

November 15, 2010
  |  6,079 views

Companies that deliver high-quality customer experiences via new media are rewarded for their efforts, often in the form of higher brand awareness and likelihood to purchase among those who engage, but that loyalty can be hard to find and hard to keep, according to a survey from Cone.

Consumers are more open than ever to engaging with companies via new media: 86% of surveyed new media* users say they interact with brands online, up from 78% who said so in 2009. Even so, new media users still choose to associate with only 4.6 brands on average (via friending, following, or subscribing to RSS feed).

Financial incentives are still biggest attraction for consumers connecting with brands. New media users expect deals and coupons (77%), but also look to brands to help them solve problems (46%) and solicit their feedback on products and services (39%).

Only 21% of new media users expect to be marketed to via their new media relationships with brands.


To find coupons and special offers, most consumers turn to a brand's social networking site (46%). But as new media use grows, so too do the myriad of touch points, including mobile devices (20%), message boards (20%), photo-, audio- or video-sharing sites (13%), blogs (13%), online games (12%), and microblogs (4%).

Below, other findings from the 2010 Cone Consumer New Media Study.

Why Users Stop Following Brands


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  • by Meghan Mon Nov 15, 2010 via web

    Thank you for an insightful article; it comes at an important time for marketers, and I greatly appreciate your careful analysis and input.

    "Financial incentives are still biggest attraction for consumers connecting with brands. New media users expect deals and coupons (77%), but also look to brands to help them solve problems (46%) and solicit their feedback on products and services (39%)."

    I particularly appreciated this statistic about consumers; as a social media marketer, I can definitely agree that reaching an audience with high expectations for satisfaction and reward requires dedication and attention to detail.

    Our customers depend on us as a reliable source for information, as a means of communicating questions, issues, or suggestions, and of course as a means of saving time and money. Everyone loves a deal, and it certainly takes strategy and a good understanding of the marketing industry to achieve one of the hardest-won successes of the job: maintaining your fans and customers after winning them over initially.

    Whether social media or age-old marketing tactics, customers respond to consistency and personal attention. And that is something we are all trying to perfect and manage in an age of online social networking.

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