As we begin to talk more smartly about social media ROI as an industry, we need to look closer at what actions are leading consumers to search, click and ultimately buy. A joint-study last week from Performics and ROI Research and the 2009 Razorfish FEED Report, released yesterday, begin to do that.
Performics study of 3,000 consumers, which was released at ad:tech New York last week, looked at how various segments of consumers use social networks in their daily lives, specifically in regard to finding out about different types of products and in relation to other media channels. Two specifically interesting points from their study, were:
- 30 % of respondents have learned about a new product, service or brand from a social networking site
- 28 % of respondents said messages about sales or special deal notifications resonate with them
Meanwhile, Razorfish’s report, which was based on a survey of 1,000 “connected consumers,” echoed the sentiment of consumers engaging with brands online, taking action (recommending / posting feedback) and ultimately purchasing – especially when deals are on the table.
- Nearly 70 % of respondents have read blogs produced by products or brands (e.g., Nintendo) in some frequency
- 26 % have followed a brand on Twitter
- 40 % have “friended” a brand on Facebook or MySpace
- 73% of respondents post product or brand reviews on Web sites (e.g., Amazon, Yelp, Facebook, Twitter, etc.)
- 53% have blogged about a product, brand or service
- 70% have participated in a brand sponsored contest or sweepstakes online
With that data it’s obvious that engagement is continuing to increase, but why are they following? Similar to last week’s study, Razorfish found that the #1 reason for following or ‘friending’ a brand is simple. They want deals.
- 43% of those that follow a brand on Twitter, do so for exclusive deals or offers. This beat out ‘I am a current customer’ (24%) and for ‘interesting and entertaining content (23%)
- Exclusive deals or offers were also the top reason for ‘friending’ brands on Facebook or MySpace
But perhaps the biggest takeaway from the Razorfish study was the data on how online influences (blogs, YouTube, Websites, online customer service, etc) can change brand opinion and ultimately purchase decisions.
- 65 % of respondents said an online experience has changed their opinion (either positively or negatively) about a brand or the products and services it offers
- 97% said that experience has influenced their future purchase decisions
- In addition, 64% said they have made a first purchase from a brand based purely on a digital experience (e.g., a Website, micro-site, mobile coupon, blog, tweet, email, etc)