Over the years, social media sites and applications have created opportunities for people to stay connected to family and friends and have enhanced the possibilities of making new friends from every corner of the world.
On the other hand, social media offers many benefits to businesses and business owners, as it has given them the chance to reach out to their customers and to gain the attention of more people and potential customers. Further, by giving a business brand the social media touch, a business does not only generate more business but also connect with its customers better and serve them on a higher level.
According to research done by Africa Social Media Lab Africa (SIMElab), an interdisciplinary Center for research in Big Data and Social Media Analytics Research Lab based in USIU-Africa’s Freida Brown Innovation Center, social media users follow brands they admire to learn about products or services, to get updated with company news, to know about recent promotions or to connect with people who have similar tastes as themselves.
The research also found that some people will follow a brand as loyal customers who want to communicate with the organization or to reach out for customer service. The same consumers also want brands to provide quick responses through social media, making the platforms much more significant in customer relationship management (CRM) efforts.
Also, some social media users will follow a brand during a marketing campaign or when a brand is mentioned by influencers they like.
Out of a sample of 9740 spread across 17 counties, 78% of Kenyans follow brands on social media. 38.9% of the users aged between 21-25 years old and 30.5% of the 26-25 year-olds follow their favorite brands online. The older social media users are less likely they are in following brands on social media, with only 12.2% of the those aged between 36-45 years old and 4.9% of the users aged 46 years and above follow brands online.
Urban social media users are more likely to follow brands online than their rural counterparts. 55.8% of the urban social media users say that they follow brands online, compared to 44.2% of rural users.
Social Media Sites
With the uptake in visual content consumed from social media becoming highly popular, there is a surge in penetration and acceptance of other less commonly known social media sites and applications in Kenya. The research found new types of social media being accessed locally that did not have much following before including TikTok, IMO, Likee, Vskit, Telegram, and Vimeo.
In terms of the most used social media among Kenyans, WhatsApp (89%), Facebook (81.7%), and YouTube (51.6%) are still the top three most used social media. However, while the number of WhatsApp users has increased marginally in 2020, the number of Facebook users has decreased by 6.8%.
Worth mentioning is the new entrants to the top ten most used social media in Kenya which now include TikTok (8.8%), Telegram (15.5%), and Facebook Messenger (37.4%). Twitter and Snapchat users have increased by 6.3%, and 4.4% respectively in 2020.
Businesses small and large are turning to social media to advertise their products and services, to engage with customers and a potential outreach to a worldwide customer reach. Start using social media by creating a social media account for your business, on popular social media tools such as Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, YouTube, etc. Beginning today!