What do consumers want from social media?


I was reading a post titled, Marketers Like Twitter More Than Consumers Do

This excerpt caught my eye:

The firm says that about 45% of marketers polled felt Twitter will grow exponentially, while two thirds of consumers said they didn’t have an opinion, and only 12% of the latter said it is something young people and the media will use. Eight percent of consumers said Twitter is already a digital has-been.

Consumers can’t dismiss something before they have even learned about it right? And yet it strikes me that perhaps we as marketers and thinkers have not done enough in explaining what Twitter is. Or perhaps Twitter has done a poor job in articulating what Twitter is and can do?

A step in the right direction was the recent release of Twitter 101 for business, but before we can prime a business on the benefits of what social media and or Twitter can do for them, perhaps we should take even less time and just ask what they want. In other words, instead of starting by explaining what social media is..we take the business challenge at hand, and see if we can mold a social media solution to that business challenge. If there is not a fit, and in some instances, that just might be the case…we move on.

But beyond that, the last statement in the above mentioned post struck a nerve with me and it was a comment by Harris Interactive and it was this:

“It is the advertisers and marketers who should play the lead role in promoting consumer education if they truly want to move Twitter beyond infancy and into its tween years.”

So I ask you this. Are we giving consumers what they want? Do they know what they want? Or are we giving them what we think they want?


5 Responses to “What do consumers want from social media?”

  1. 1 Rod Macbeth July 27, 2009 at 4:22 pm

    Very interesting article especially the stats on what consumers feel. Twitter can be quite useful but I feel it needs work.

  2. 2 gacconsultants July 28, 2009 at 2:24 pm

    Consumers want to be treated like humans… engagement – to be respected and feel like their business is important, a voice – to be heard and know that someone is listening, useful information – insight and straight talk from people that know what they are talking about, to be assisted – nobody likes to be sold, however, they appreciate being served up products and services.

  3. 3 gacconsultants July 28, 2009 at 2:28 pm

    To answer your last question Marc; some get it and do a good job of it… and some don’t.

  4. 4 marc meyer July 29, 2009 at 11:19 am

    Very nice insight Mark. and you’re right, no one likes to be sold.

  1. 1 The Manager Who Thought He Could Create a Community « Fredzimny’s CCCCC Blog Trackback on August 3, 2009 at 5:57 pm
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Marc Meyer is a Digital and Social Media Strategist at DRMG. This is my personal blog where I share observations, thoughts and opinions that are all my own.


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