Marketers continue to build up their presence on social networks with paid ads and other types of promotions. As more money is funneled into this format, especially Facebook, it’s worth considering whether these marketers will be able to consistently connect with consumers. Some analysts have pointed out that a solid social media connection can increase loyalty but if consumers are taking a break from sites like Facebook, marketers may need to rethink their plans.
The results of the Pew Internet report, Coming and Going on Facebook, indicate that the social network is as popular as ever. At least 2/3 of online adult consumers have a Facebook presence. An additional 8% of online consumers say they want to establish a Facebook page. About 4 in 10 social network users check their sites more than once a day, an increase from the 3 in 10 who did so in previous years.
While these users make a good audience for marketers who are chasing consumer attention, there is a noticeable trend afoot. 6 in 10 Facebook users claim they take breaks from the site. These breaks can last for several weeks. The reasons for the break:
- Too busy/no time 21%
- Not interested/didn’t like it 10%
- Waste of time/ irrelevant content 10%
- Too much drama/gossip/negativity/conflict 9%
Another 20% of online adults call themselves former Facebook users. Their reasons for giving up the site are generally the same as the reasons other users take a break. In addition, about 27% of Facebook users plan to spend less time on the site this year.
Some of these negative feelings could well extend to other social media sites. However, networks such as LinkedIn, which strive to provide relevant content, especially to professional groups, have additional ways to draw in users and keep them engaged.
These shifts in attitudes about Facebook aren’t likely to bring about seismic changes in marketer approaches to social media strategies. However, they may want to consider ways to provide more relevant content to their fan base.[Source: Rainie, et al. Coming and Going on Facebook. Pew Internet. Feb. 2013. Web. 20 Feb. 2013]