The Impact of Social Media on Consumer Behavior

Social media has a huge influence on people’s behavior, both in positive and negative ways. If you plan to use social media as an advertising strategy, you should be familiar with its effect on your customers. With that in mind, it is essential to talk about the impact of social media on consumer behavior. Before you use this strategy, you should understand its implications and learn more about the benefits and drawbacks of social media marketing.

The good sides of social media

Let’s start with the positive impact of social media on consumer behavior. As with every other marketing strategy, you should understand its benefits and why it is so important for your business before you apply it.

Ease of access to information

A great benefit of social media is that it allows consumers to quickly find out everything about the product or service they are interested in. We are not just talking about the description but also reviews, video content, and much more. Consumers are more likely to purchase a product if they have enough information.

It builds trust

As we have established, people turn to social media for information. Many influencers gladly advertise products in front of their followers or subscribers. If you hire an influencer to review your products, there is a high chance that you will quickly build a trustworthy relationship with your consumers. People tend to trust the influencers they follow and often make purchase decisions based on their reviews.

Social media users tend to share information

Since social media is so engaging and entertaining, users are happy to share things they see with their friends and family. Whether it is a funny video, a song, or an image, more than 70% of social media activities revolve around sharing content.

That is a piece of very important information for a marketer. Because of the need for people to share content, every ad should have that shareable quality. Consumers will always tell others about a product they purchased, so use that to spread the word about your products quickly.

Social media is visual

The advertising strategy changes as soon as consumer behavior goes through a change. Because social media is so engaging and visual, it becomes harder and harder to impress people and create engaging content. They always want to see more unexpected and grandiose content, something they have never seen before. And all of that must be extremely visual, or it will not capture their attention.

That gives you another direction in which you need to go if you wish to create engaging social media content for marketing campaigns and engage your audience. You need to satisfy consumer curiosity, as well as the addictive behavior that craves visual satisfaction.

Consumers are getting used to giveaways

Another common trend on social media is to organize giveaway events, where people would show up or do something to win a free prize. This trend slowly transformed into an expected and required behavior of businesses. Those who follow social media accounts are more likely to stick around with those that reward them from time to time.

The negative impact of social media on consumer behavior

To effectively use social media marketing, you need to be aware of the dos and don’ts of advertising. We will close this article with the negative impact of social media on consumer behavior because we want to leave you with a word of caution. It is better to be safe than sorry.

The FOMO syndrome

Due to the popularity and visibility of social media, as well as the effect it has on people, there is a huge amount of pressure to compare yourself with others or purchase stuff that others have purchased, even if you don’t need them.

The fear of missing out (FOMO) is strong, and it can negatively impact your consumers if they tend to spend more money on purchasing products and regret their decisions down the road.

Consumers might feel an information overload

Even though people often use social media on their own accord to look for product information, they are at the same time constantly being bombarded with advertisements and products they have no interest in.

Furthermore, some algorithms will keep track of the keywords consumers search for and constantly send them advertising material. Consumers might feel an information overload that could push them away from making purchases.

Consumers are afraid of scams

Unfortunately, due to the anonymity of social media and the lack of physical contact, many scammers are out there looking for naive people. That can also create a sense of mistrust toward social media, especially if people are unfamiliar with the content.

Social media is addictive

Another disadvantage of social media is that it creates addictive behavior. Once people get used to all the fun of social media, they cannot stop. They spend more and more time on social media, which starts to affect their personal lives and productivity.

As a business, you want your consumers to be engaged and purchase your products. But you also want them to feel happy at the same time. There needs to be a fine line between engaging with the audience and making them spend too much time on social media due to advertising.

Fake advertising pushes away consumers

Even though there are influencers who do genuine and honest product reviews, there are also those who resort to fake reviews for the sake of making money. That is a common mistake of paid advertising, and it can be tricky because consumers understand what is happening. They know someone is getting paid to discuss a product or a service. That can also cause mistrust, not just toward the influencer but also the business and the products they advertise.

How to use this knowledge to improve social media advertising?

Now that you understand the benefits and drawbacks of social media in advertising, it is important to learn how to use that information when creating content. You should always try to:

  • Create engaging material that will satisfy high standards of social media content
  • Be honest and transparent with your advertising
  • Do not spam people with too much content
  • Protect your customers by working with verified influencers
  • Do not influence your consumers to make rash decisions

The impact of social media on consumer behavior can both help and harm your business. It is crucial to have that in mind if you wish to build a successful social media marketing campaign.


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