A survey from Ask Your Target Market suggests that Twitter followers want social content marketing to reflect businesses' personalities.

Thinking about keeping that snarky comment out of your corporate tweet? (Maybe) think again. A recent survey from AYTM Market Research reveals that many Twitter followers enjoy seeing a brand’s personality come through in social content. 

The company asked Twitter users about their brand interaction habits, and marketers should be glad to hear that the majority of respondents (63 percent) follow businesses on the microblogging site. Of those following brands, 26 percent said they prefer business tweets that show some personality and brand perspective, compared to just 16 percent who want tweets to be “completely professional” (such as straightforward corporate updates).

Before businesses get ready to unleash an LOL Tweet, it’s worth noting that the consensus is that brands should use judgement on the type of Tweets that are appropriate in their industries, and valuable information seems to be a Tweet requirement regardless of the sector. More than one-third of respondents (36 percent) say the type of Tweet they prefer “depends on the business.”

A study from AOL and Nielsen previously covered by Brafton might offer some insight on the type of social content consumers and B2B buyers expect from businesses in various sectors – or at least which type of social content they are most likely to share. The study (which Brafton reported shows that men are more likely to share than women) found that trustworthy information is the leading type of shared content across platforms for businesses in the automotive, financial, technology and entertainment industries. “Trustworthy information” refers to news content marketing, how-to articles and/or product information.

Sharing headlines revolving around these issues or insights still leaves room for businesses to inject their personalities into introductory Tweets, but commentary (meaning straight opinions) trailed significantly behind information in terms of social sharing, and respondents said humorous (or “just for fun” social content) only had a place among businesses in the entertainment industry.

The need for businesses to carefully consider the content they use to fuel social media marketing campaigns is growing. As Brafton reported yesterday, Twitter and Facebook spam is reportedly on the rise and brands that want to make a good impression will need to rise above the social content clutter in 2012.

Katherine Griwert is Brafton's Marketing Director. She's practiced content marketing, SEO and social marketing for over five years, and her enthusiasm for new media has even deeper roots. Katherine holds a degree in American Studies from Boston College, and her writing is featured in a number of web publications.