A Lack of Social Media Cohesion

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New research from eCommerce and digital marketing company Acquity Group reveals that more than 75 percent of brands lacked a cohesive social media presence across the major platforms.

Results from the agency’s 2012 Brand eCommerce Audit, which evaluated Interbrand’s 2012 Best Retail Brands on customer engagement across major digital channels, indicated that while every brand on the list (except one) had a Facebook page, and 45 out of 50 are on Twitter, only 12 of the brands had a cohesive presence across all five of the major social networks that were analyzed ( Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest and YouTube.

Twitter had the largest gap between usage and interaction according to the study. Less than 27 percent of brands analyzed actively participated in Twitter conversations with consumers, even though 90 percent of those brands had a presence.

Other highlights from the Acquity study include:

- 80 percent of the brands analyzed leveraged YouTube with an impressive 85 percent engagement rate.
- 56 percent of brands do not yet utilize Instagram, but there is a high level of interaction at 79 percent.
- 60 percent of the brands had adopted Pinterest and interaction rates on the social pin-board were 70 percent.

Acquity Group also profiled 10 brands that scored best overall in social interaction including Target, Home Depot, RadioShack, Bath and Body Works, Nordstrom, Gap, eBay, Coach, American Eagle Outfitters and Banana Republic (in the order of their ranking).

"Although most brands are signed up for the major social networks, many struggle to understand how they fit into their overarching business strategy. As a result, our audit revealed several critical areas of improvement when it comes to actually connecting with consumers across social channels," said Jay Dettling, Executive Vice President at Acquity Group.

"The important take away for brands is to avoid haphazard or sporadic use of social media. When a new social media channel is introduced, brands need to take the time to analyze the potential impact and return, and develop a solid strategy from there."

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2 comments

LawrenceB 01-03-2013 7:40 AM

I find the Twitter study to be very interesting.  It seems you can find everyone on Twitter, but, as stated here, not very many people are "interacting" with consumers.  Although we use Twitter here, quite regularly, I have to agree that getting your point across in "140 word" increments can be trying at times and I think that's why most brands look to another source for interaction.  I think Twitter should consider letting people "get away" with a slight overage when it comes to the 140 word challenge and I bet the usage of Twitter would double.  Let' face it, everyone has a Twitter account, but, no one can keep a conversation that "short and sweet".  Giving people the option to slightly go over that word count would triple the interaction on that platform.  Most people have a really sound Twitter structure available to them, but, just find it frustrating to use for more than just "announcements" or "invites".  Just a thought!!! :) -Dee Blackman, LDJ Auto Body, Gibsonton, FL.

LouiseG 01-04-2013 1:03 AM

It's clear that many businesses still do not how to run social media effectively and participate because they feel they should rather than have a well thought out strategy. So many people forget to apply real world principles to online. For example in the real world people would expect to see and feel the same experience at all physical locations. It's should be the same for virtual locations such as Facebook, twitter, etc.

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