Three Keys to Consumer Social Media Engagement

Brands hoping to engage fans on social media should focus on producing relevant, high quality content at the right time and during peak seasons.

There’s a season for everything. As brands gear up for the Christmas shopping season, it’s worth exploring the seasonal trends in social media engagement.

According to a study by social software company, Expion, the trends indicate that Seasonal Affective Disorder may affect fan engagement. As a result, the return on investment of marketing efforts during the season of “winter blues” tends to be lower.

“There are seasonal variations that occur just in how people use social,” says Mike Heffring, Expion CMO. “So you get these big peaks around Christmas and in the Spring, when there’s a lot of social activity going on.”

Be that as it may, Heffring adds that while fan bases grow, engagement tends to decline. In addition to the seasonal peaks and valleys, he attributes the decline to two other factors: the new fans aren’t as loyal as the early adopters and increased brand activity without focus on quality content production.

“As posting goes up, the overall engagement goes down because not everything is as good as it could be,” Heffring says.

And we all know that the key to social conversion is compelling those social media followers to take action. The key to counteracting the seasonal trends of social media engagement is for brands to focus on posting quality content at the right times. For retail brands, the sweet spot for fan engagement is between 11:00 a.m. and 1:00 p.m. Eastern, Heffring says.

Even still, the peak times for social engagement varies by industry. For instance, sports fans are most engaged during game time and the day immediately after a big game. Many retailers like to post the most content on Fridays, but this is a notoriously low performing day for fan engagement, according to the Expion study.

In the end, Heffring says it’s important for brands to get out of production mode and pay more attention to quality, timing and relevancy. “Don’t overwhelm [consumers] with a tsunami of posts.”

Featured image credit:  mmarchin