Social Media remains elusive for brands for good reason; it's always changing.

A new survey shows that once dominant social media channels including Instagram and Facebook appear to be losing their luster for brands. It also confirms what many already know: some industries fair better on certain sites than others.

The assessment, which involved an analysis of more than 40,000 companies in 130 industries during the first half of 2016, is worth noting--particularly if you rely on engaging with customers through social media sites.

Among other revelations, Instagram stands out as the platform with the best engagement ratio per brand. Users engage 10 times more with brands on this site than on Facebook, according to the survey out today from software platform TrackMaven. "Engagement," in this case, refers to the number of likes and comments generated by a post.

Still, the social media site is losing some of its oomph. The engagement ratio per brand--that is, average interactions per post per brand per 1,000 followers--decreased on Instagram by more than 25 percent. That trend is also seen at Facebook and LinkedIn, though to a lesser degree. Engagement with brands on both sites dropped about 8 percent.

By contrast, engagement on Twitter ticked up, if only slightly, by 1 percent.

The decline, on Instagram, could be related to its quest for monetization. In the first half of 2016, the picture-focused site introduced a new ranking algorithm and business profiles for brands. Still, for companies within industries including music and entertainment, consumer electronics, sporting goods, and luxury goods should continue to favor the site, according to the survey.

Companies in industries such as animation, sports, legal services and food service should stick with Facebook, where the researchers found users engaged with these brands the most. Twitter catered best to businesses in online gaming, sporting goods and, surprisingly, farming industries.

It should be noted that these findings, while interesting, don't factor in shares or clicks, which are two essential metrics for companies. So, take these stats in stride and be sure to keep your own metrics too.

Published on: Jul 27, 2016