Like it or not, social media is now an integral part of our society. Whether you use it to keep up with old friends, make new ones, or just a way to get the news and share your life, social media has found its way into our lives, and it’s here to stay.
And since it’s now been around for a while, we’re starting to see just how much it has changed the way we behave. Because whether we notice it or not, social media has had a huge influence on the way we live.
All you have to do now is Google ‘how does social media influence?’, and your search box will be auto-filled with everything from news and politics to fashion and dating.
So we have to ask, how does what we see on social media impact our lives? And how can businesses use it to create better, more relevant content for us?
The Impact Of ‘The News Feed’
While the term was originally coined by Facebook, ‘news feed’ has become more of a catch-all term for the feed of information we see when we first open up our social media accounts.
It represents all the things we have ‘liked’, all the people we are friends with, and all the things we want to know about. It’s like a microcosm of you in one place. The news feed allows users to constantly benefit from the surge of activity in our network neighbourhood – finding out what it is going on around us and staying connected with people, and businesses, in our area.
But it’s taking up a lot of our time too. Sticking with Facebook, the average person now spends 50 minutes a day on the social platform. Given that there are only 24 hours in a day and the average person is sleeping for 8.8 of them, that means more than 1/16 of the average person’s time in a day is spent on Facebook.
The Relationship Between The News Feed And Social Activity
The way we consume media and TV programming is a great example of this. In the past, if you wanted to watch a programme with friends or family, you would all need to convene in one place at the right time to catch it. This made it difficult, and ‘viewing parties’ were created to help facilitate social TV watching.
But social media means that you don’t have to be in the same space in order to have that shared viewing experience. You can chat with people you don’t even know online about your beloved TV show, forging new friendships based on mutual interests.
In fact, you might be so engaged in talking about it online that you don’t pay attention to the adverts in the break.
Social media is having this kind of impact across all of our behaviours – and businesses are starting to notice. Savvy marketers are noticing when users spend the most time on platforms, what they do and how they do it, and what motivates them to change their behaviour.
With all of this data available at their fingertips, those businesses can craft social content that matches the behaviour of their customers, and see better results because of it. The aim is for customers to feel that brands are understanding their motivations and their needs, and most importantly, are meeting them.
What Can Businesses Learn?
So, given that social media has such a big impact on the way we behave, how can businesses adjust their approach to social media to get better results? We think there are three key areas that businesses can use these insights to improve leads and sales conversions:
- Crafting Social Profiles: Producing a social media profile isn’t as simple as just filling in a name and a bio anymore. When it comes to brands, you need to have a consistent social profile. Now that brands are much more common on social media, and users are actively seeking out those brands, businesses need to be able to respond with appropriate and effective profiles.
- Creating Social Content: The kind of content businesses promote on social media is key, especially when you’re moving around other habits influenced by social media. Netflix does a great job of understanding the kind of content its users want, when they want it, with the right level of promotion and calls to action. Businesses can also learn what kind of content their customers want at what points in their buyer journey, helping them develop the right social content for the right place at the right time.
- Building Relationships: There is no denying that social media has completely changed the way businesses create and forge relationships with their customers, both good and bad. For example, when Netflix announced it was changing its pricing structure, its customers responded by posting over 82,000 negative comments across its social media accounts. Their market value dropped by two-thirds within months – faster than any business before. Don’t worry, they got it back. Similarly, businesses can use social media to foster positive relationships with their customers, based on their behaviours. This could mean taking a more ‘human’ approach and finding the ‘social’ behind social media.
At Orbital Media, we help businesses craft their bespoke social media strategies and campaigns, based on real consumer behaviour and driving real results. If you would like to find out more, just get in touch today to find out more information.