New research has revealed that UK consumers are more discerning and less ready to be ‘influenced’ when booking a holiday than travel brands may have previously thought.
According to the new study commissioned by Finn Partners, a global marketing and communications agency, almost half of UK adults do not follow social media influencers and 51% of respondents who do follow social media influencers revealed interesting perspectives on what they ‘hate’ to see those influencers posting, versus what they ‘love’ to see.
The survey questioned over 2000 UK consumers aged 18 and over from across the British Isles.
What UK consumers HATE:
- Fake engagement (61%)
- Over-stylised content (38%)
- Content that doesn’t fit with their overall theme (36%)
- Generic imagery (36%)
- Brand partnerships (32%)
- Limited details about the destination (30%)
What they LOVE:
- Useful tips (46%)
- Personal experiences (37%)
- Hidden gems/Unheard of locations/places (37%)
- Images (28%)
- Video (19%)
The results revealed that brands need to consider their social media strategies more carefully than they might have thought.
Often brands are advised to work with influencers and to create stylised social content, to quickly build following and engagement on social media. However, Finn Partners’ research shows that consumers are not easily fooled into making a buying decision based on what they see as inauthentic content.
Instead, brands need to view their social strategies as an integral part of their public relations programmes, employing techniques of really understanding what their audiences are looking for and creating story-telling social content that connects with these needs and expectations.
“50% prefer content that speaks personally to them”
Commenting on the survey, Debbie Flynn, managing partner at Brighter Group, a Finn Partners Company, said: “Marketing managers and PR executives need to balance the requirements of the whole of their audience, understanding that almost 50% aren’t influenced by social media, and that the other 50% prefer content that speaks personally to them – the useful tips, and stories of personal experiences that will help them to make a decision about where to travel, and how.”