Brand engagement

Why it doesn’t exist and what to do in its place

Brand engagement.

This has been for a number of years now, the manta by which every progressive brand has lived.

We must have brand engagement and the best way to achieve this is to create engaging content.

By doing this we will create brand advocates who will in turn not only buy more from our brand, but will share their positive attitude with everyone they know.

The reality is that people don’t engage with branded social content very often, if at all.

The percentage of brand Fans who interact with brand posts is 0.7% on Facebook and 0.3% on Twitter*.

These are not random people. These are brand Fans. People you would expect to be brand champions and people who you would expect to interact with content that a brand posts.

And before yo say that this is just one example of research and therefore maybe skewed – this has been confirmed by the Ehrenberg Institute who recorded that just 0.5% of Facebook Fans interact with the posts of those brands that they’re fans of.

Shocking stuff.

Ahh, but maybe it’s because these aren’t passion brands you say.

Nope.

Nike’s engagement is 0.39%

Porsche 0.62%

Tiffany & Co. 1.14%**

So where is everybody going wrong?

Paul Adams, Facebook’s Ex-.‐Global Head Of Brand Design on this matter; “Almost every app built for a brand on Facebook has NO usage.”

And now we’re getting to the nub of the issue.

People don’t really care about brands.

They care about things that they’re really interested in.

Football, holidays, friends and family, food, in short, all the things that we’re all really, honestly interested in.

In fact according to Meaningful Brands, part of the Havas Media Group, 92% of people in Europe and America wouldn’t care if brands disappeared.

That means that only 8%of people care a jot about brands.

And no surprise at all really when you look at 99% of the marketing that’s created today – but that’s another rant for another day.

To put this another way, in a way that most of us will find tangible, 72% of Pepsi drinkers also buy Coke.***

So much for the Pepsi challenge.

if this is the case,, then what’s the solution, if indeed there is a solution?

It’s simple really.

Start with the premise that your brand isn’t the first of the last thing that people think about.

Actually, you’ll be lucky if they think about you at all.

Therefore, your creative work has to be exceptional.

It needs to truly touch people.

It needs to take an interest in what people are interested in, as opposed to the other way round.

It needs to make them laugh.

It needs to make them pause and think.

It needs to enhance their lives.

It needs to be more than simply ‘cool looking’.

It needs to have an idea behind it that resonates with people.

Most people find it easy to participate with a brand. After all, sharing is usually just a click. So make it something that people want to share.

Also, make sure its seen. It’s all well and good having a PPC campaign that ensures your film is seen by 100,000 people, but are these the right people or are you simply making up the numbers? If you’re looking for brand growth, don’t go to those people who are already buying form you, look for ways that you can appeal to infrequent buyers – these are the people who will help your brand to really grow.

And remember, just because you’ve created something that’s engaging and appeals to the right demographic that only 10% of viewers will ever share content.

So be spectacular with your creativity and look for those people who don’t already know you – for through them you’ll find the key to helping your brand to really grow.

* Forrester Q1 2014 US Top 50 Brands Social WebTrack

** Source: Facebook fans: A fan for life? Karen Nelson – Field and Jennifer Taylor

*** Source: Byron Sharp “How Brands Grow” TNS UK

All figures supplied by Nigel Rahimpour, Planning Director.