By Daniel Hunter

With fewer than half of people actively engaging with companies on social networking sites, 123-reg, the UK’s largest domain registrar, has warned that businesses are missing out on valuable marketing opportunities by failing to keep their content fresh and engaging.

123-reg surveyed 1,000 of the general public to find out how they were interacting with businesses on their social media channels, and found that well over half (59 per cent) do not visit corporate social networking sites. However, of those that do, 16 per cent were drawn by company news, 11 per cent by deals and promotions, and a further eight per cent wanted to share their opinions.

According to Thomas Vollrath, CEO of 123-reg’s parent company, Host Europe Group, universal acceptance of businesses on social channels is a long way off and businesses will need to work harder to create content that will add value to users’ lives if they are to succeed on them.

“Social media has of course transformed the ways in which we communicate with each other, but the transformation of consumer-business relations hasn’t quite been as forthcoming," he said.

"Although a good number of people refrain from engaging with businesses on these channels, this is fast changing and, as we can see from these results, there are is a good number of users actively visiting corporate pages for company news, competitions and promotions.

“Businesses entering into the social arena need to realise that they can’t just sit back and expect followers to come to them,” he continued. “While more established, well-known brands have enough gravitational pull to accrue followers, even they cannot rest on their laurels and expect them to stay there. Every business needs to ensure their content is fresh and engaging, and offers something unique.

“Your content is often point at which your brand is exposed to a potential customer, even before they think about using your products, so from the start it needs to offer something of value. It needs to be interesting, it needs to help them solve a problem, and it needs to provoke a discussion. Ultimately, businesses need to give people a reason to come back again and if they know your content is useful and regularly updated, they will keep an eye on your activity."

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