1.3 billion monthly Facebook users, 58 million daily Tweets, 13% overall internet users using Instagram – social media of today are used by anyone and everyone making it a very potent but also unspecific communication channel. Many companies struggle to address their specific audience carpet-bombing entire social media communities with their messages in hopes of reaching a percentage of those who will be interested in what their brand has to offer, leaving the rest annoyed (Wistia newsfeed advertising casestudy).
Just recently Twitter reached out to its advertisers allowing them to target specific languages additionally to the other demographic metrics already available, which is a clear indication that network operators understand the pressure of funnelling messages.
However, unwanted streams of irrelevant content (ie. the hastag abuse case from habitat UK) and desperate monetization attempts have long been crowding the once personal social media spaces that users have built around themselves, what in turn has prompted many to migrate.
The issue is not only the overflow of messages, but also the fact that they often unrelated to specific users.
“Being a catch-all, Facebook doesn’t seem to really address the needs of any demographic, which has led users to utilise other possibilities where the trade-off between commercialisation and functionality isn’t quite so great.” – Jim McCall, Managing Director, The Unit
Those looking to connect with like-minded individuals have turned to smaller, but much more relevant networks allowing them to experience the content they want and have meaningful interactions with other users (ie. Reddit with its subreddits).
What does this all mean to a marketer?
Large social media audiences often offer a low ROI due to a small percentage of message accuracy. Marketers need to look for small communities which not only guarantee high engagement to the content relevant to their interests but also can become engines of great WOM and SEO.
Users are turning away from message cluttered spaces. Investing in a more personal approach to your brand’s audience will have much better results to transmitting universal messages.
The below infographic nicely visualises what I’m trying to highlight in my article: