Companies have found ways to make a name for themselves on social media platforms but are users fans of their content? In a study of Canadian consumers, research firm Leger and digital performance agency Ressac found that while brands attempt to increase their platform engagement, most struggle to find the proper balance to keep users subscribed.

Social media has become a home for brands that target their audience via their account feed or branded content and advertisements. Thirty-seven percent of Canadians say they follow a brand or company on their personal accounts. On Instagram, 78% of people in the 16-34 age range, 54% of 35-54-year-olds and 30% of those over 55 follow brands. Forty-two percent of 16-34-year-olds, 73% of 35-54-year-olds and 75% of people 55+ follow brands on Facebook. Only 13% of users follow brands on TikTok.

While many users follow brands online, 81% say they hit the follow button after having an in-person experience with them. Eighty-seven percent of people over the age of 55 say they followed business pages after browsing their websites. Many brands or business pages struggle to gain and maintain followers. Seventy percent of 16-34-year-olds say they unfollow brands because their content is not interesting. Twenty-one percent of respondents say they unfollow because they do not want to be associated with the brand and 50% unsubscribe if their values don’t line up. Business and brand accounts are often on a slippery slope, wanting to establish a presence without being omnipresent. Fifty percent of respondents say they will unfollow an account if they post too much and 11% say they will unfollow if they don’t post enough. 

Seeing advertisements on personal accounts is often disliked. Seventy-eight percent of those surveyed say they avoid ads by using an ad blocker, a private browser or another way to prevent them from popping up. Fifty-five percent of 16-34-year-olds and 32%...