A new study on why consumers disengage with brands on social media finds that consumer-generated images have powerful sway over consumers’ perceptions of brands.
“Consumer-created brand images on social media are different from product images on retailer websites,” said one author of the study, Liu Liu of the University of Colorado. “Consumer-created brand imagery posted on social media depicts consumers’ interactions with brands and links brands with usage context, feelings, and consumption experiences.”
The authors developed and tested a model called BrandImageNet for brands to monitor and evaluate how their brands are portrayed in images and whether that aligns with their positioning.
Why we care. Social listening has focused mainly on what people say about brands with text. But as images become “the medium of choice for online conversations,” the authors say, brands need to reprioritize how they’re evaluating brand sentiment.