I was sitting with some colleagues the other night and someone asked the group what we think best captures the true intent of people online, search or social? A great question and one that certainly sparked some debate. Do we think running a search program is the best channel to attract our audience simply because this audience is typing and searching for their true intent of what they want to find online? Or do we think that creating a fan page is most effective because people will be in a community setting among their peers, and that tends to be the best environment that represents true user intentions.
Well, we all came to the general conclusion that both search and social are critically linked to each other. And the successful application of both these activities greatly impacts the other, and in turn the success of the brand online.
Back in February, my company with the collaboration of comScore conducted a study in the U.S. that attempted to address the relationship of search and social in the purchase pathway. If everything has a clearly defined beginning to reach a natural conclusion, then something had to come first right? Below is a summary of the findings and, as this was a U.S.-driven study, many of the findings can certainly relate to what's happening in Asia.
The study concludes that while search appears to be the definitive starting point in the consumer decision-making process, the casual circle between search and social presents an important opportunity for brands to capture and drive customers to conversion.
I think brands in Asia can learn a great deal from the interplay between search and social. Clearly some brands in this region are a bit more progressive in this space than others, but as media becomes more fragmented and brands start to invest more online, having a strategy in both search and social will be of great value.
If interested, the complete study can be found here.
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Andy Radovic is a strategic digital marketer with 12+ years experience working in the digital media space across a variety of agencies, spanning stints in the U.S., Japan, Korea, and now Singapore. Currently working for Maxus Asia Pacific, part of the GroupM network, the world’s largest media investment management organization, and media communications and planning arm of parent company WPP. At Maxus, Andy leads regional digital duties for Asia Pacific with a focus on building out the Maxus digital product offering across Asia Pacific focusing on search, social, mobile, digital analytics and e-commerce. Prior to Maxus, Andy headed up digital for GroupM in Japan and Korea. Before GroupM, he has worked for a variety of startups in Asia and the U.S. across the technology and digital media categories and is a frequent contributor to ClickZ.asia, iMediaConnection, and RevenueToday.
March 19, 2014