Last night I asked Twitter this question:

Here is a selection of some of the answers and chatter that followed:

I think it is interesting to get such a range of responses – just shows that expectations of brands in social media really are quite different for different people.

Some people are looking for give aways and product information, others want immediate social customer support, others want to be engaged and entertained, or to chat socially to ‘the people behind the brands’. Some people don’t want to have anything to do with brands at all.

So it’s no wonder it is hard for brands to be leaders in this space. It is easier to focus on just one of these areas – hand it over to the Marketing department to run a few campaigns and anΒ occasionalΒ competition. Or give it to the Customer Service team who can answer support questions as they come through. Or ask the Comms team to take the reins and share useful info. But really it is all of these and more, and your community wont be made of just one group of people wanting giveaways and bargains – it will be a mix of people some of who want free stuff, some of who want help, some who want to know what happens behind the brand, and some who want relevant information pushed through their social RSS feed.

But even if you get all that right, if your product or service is pretty average, or your frontline, production and backoffice team aren’t really passionate about your brand, it won’t matter how much you give away or what cool apps you can run on your Facebook Page, or how fast you can answer tweets because at the end of the day if your customer isn’t happy then you won’t be happy either.

But perhaps it is best summed up by Daisy Hide, the tweeter on @gr8nobull The Collective NZ account on Twitter:

Well said Daisy, well said.