There’s a tendency when setting up a branded Facebook page or Twitter account to view this as simply another advertising channel to broadcast streams of content about the brand, products and latest offers. After all, these social handraisers have actively ‘liked’ your page so they must be receptive to this kind of content, right? Well not entirely. Unlike us, the average customer on the street doesn’t live and breath your brand every day and rarely gives two hoots about that latest press release or product video, let alone those glamorous photos from that launch party they were never invited to.
In fact, a new study by ExactTarget and CoTweet (via webpronews) has identified the 10 most popular reasons why people ‘unlike’ brands on Facebook. The biggest contributory reason is because the company posted too frequently or the content becomes too repetitive and boring. Other highlights from the study include 81% of consumers have either “unliked” or removed a company’s posts from their Facebook news feed and 41% have “unfollowed” a company on Twitter. No real surprises there but it’s a helpful reminder to all of us that we need to try harder to engage and retain social handraisers than simply broadcasting brand announcements or promotional messaging.
Fanpage attrition rates is probably quite a new concept but it’s something I predict will become increasingly important as brands invest more of their precious marketing budgets on building social databases. The good news is that it follows exactly the same principles behind any traditional CRM programme. So if you send them relevant, timely and engaging content, you can expect the brand relationship to grow. But as soon as you start focusing on what you want to say rather than what they want to hear, your social handraisers will start to lose faith in this relationship and opt out.