Most Business Owners Only See 1-to-3% Consumer Engagement on Social Media

March 27, 2015

b2ap3_thumbnail_social_media_engagement_is_not_high_400.jpgYou’re surely aware of how valuable an asset social media is for your brand, but how much interaction are you really getting on your pages? No matter how many views, there’s always room for improvement. Well, you’ll be relieved to hear that even the large corporations don’t get too many hits on social media, despite the massive numbers in their favor.

The truth of the matter is that only an average of one percent will ever comment on or like something that they’ve found on the Internet. While this might initially sound pathetic, it’s very good in terms of consumer engagement rates. As reported by AdAge, engagement rates for the top 200 Facebook brands were around 1.4 percent, with Twitter rates being roughly the same.

If you look at it in terms of popular YouTube videos, the numbers seem to make more sense. For instance, take a look at this popular video dubbed Keyboard Cat:

Out of almost 40 million views, it’s only received around 240,000 likes and around 10,000 dislikes (gasp). That right there is less than one percent. Plus the comments (a modest 72,866), and it’s still less than one percent. Suddenly, that seemingly meager consumer engagement rate doesn’t seem so bad. Plus, as is the case with large companies, some businesses will pay to have their content boosted, which might be netting them a couple extra likes or comments here and there.

Don’t Worry So Much About Social Media
Inc. advises businesses to take a load off their plate and not take social media too seriously when it comes to consumer engagement: “Business owners and marketers shouldn’t be too worried if their engagement rate is near one or two percent, and they should be thankful when the rate is greater than three percent.”

First and foremost, it should be mentioned that it’s not that people don’t enjoy your content. Most people you encounter won’t want to take the time to interact with posts that they read online. Take, for instance, the editor of a newspaper. Consider how many letters to the editor that he gets concerning an article that was published. This number is dwarfed by the number of people who read the story and simply don’t want to respond.

Social media is merely a means to an end. It makes consuming content much easier than it previously was, but this doesn’t necessarily mean that people will be more compelled to respond to what they read. However, what social media does accomplish is spreading your content to more people, which means a higher consumption rate (and maybe more engagement).

Adding Media Can Drastically Improve Engagement
Social media websites are notorious for mixing content with other media, like photos, videos, or links. This can make advertising your content much more efficient. For instance, when browsing your news feed on Facebook, you might notice that an image with a caption typically gets more likes than a simple text post. The same is true for other media, and this concept works well on Twitter as well. Here’s an analysis from that shows some statistics concerning how useful media is when examining retweet rates:

  • 16 percent retweeted when a hashtag (#) was used.
  • 19 percent retweeted when a quote was cited.
  • 28 percent retweeted a video URL.
  • 35 percent retweeted a photo URL.

How’s that for improved engagement rates? High quality content mixed with other mediums is the key to helping your business achieve maximum outreach and engagement levels.

Whatever you do, don’t belittle your low engagement rates. Quality content in almost all circumstances will be the key to getting the maximum outreach with your social media. Marketing is an important aspect of business, but don’t put so much weight into your Facebook and Twitter account.

Basically, it’s not up to the business whether or not the audience wants to engage with them or not through social media. It might be frustrating, but you can’t force people to like your statuses. It comes down to encouraging them to do so with minimal stress put on yourself. Instead of worrying about getting more “likes,” you should be more concerned with responding in kind to those who do feel like engaging with you.

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