Addressing political issues on social media has traditionally been taboo for a lot of businesses. But as it turns out, some of your customers might actually want you to get political online.
A recent report from Sprout Social found that 61 percent of consumers think it’s important for brands to take a stand on social media. More specifically, 80 percent of liberals think it’s important for brands to take a stand on social media, compared to just 39 percent of conservatives.
But, Should Your Brand Take a Political Stand?
Of course, addressing divisive issues can sometimes lead to brands alienating some of their customers. But if so many consumers are interested in seeing brands address political and social issues online, it seems that avoiding those issues completely could actually alienate people as well.
This doesn’t mean that your business needs to constantly chime in with commentary on the controversial news of the day. There are some ways to address issues people care about without automatically alienating half of your customer base. The Sprout Social report found that 39 percent of consumers think that businesses should share donations they’ve made on social media. And 37 percent like when businesses encourage their customers to get involved in their communities.
The decisions you make about addressing political or social issues online can also depend greatly on your actual customer base. It seems as though there’s far more potential benefit for businesses with largely liberal customer bases to address these issues on social media. But it’s also a good idea to get a feel for some of the issues your customers really care about, so you can be sure the content you share is likely to actually resonate with people.
The Sprout Social report includes even more details about consumer opinions regarding businesses talking politics and social issues online. You can view the entire study here.
Photo via Shutterstock
More in: Branding