Research underscores why brands marketers must connect with consumers on the social network. YouTube matters, too.
With close to 9.9 million unique visitors from Malaysia on Facebook during the month of August, social networking tops the list as the most engaging activity in the country at 32.1 percent of all time spent online, according to comScore.
"Social networking has become the central activity in Malaysians' digital lives, accounting for 1 in every 3 minutes spent online," Joe Nguyen, comScore vice president for Southeast Asia said in a statement.
While Google sites continue to dominate in reach at 92.4 percent (10.4 million visitors), Facebook has climbed steadily to become the second most visited property, up 15 percent year-on-year at 87.9 percent, ahead of Yahoo sites at just 73.3 percent in the country.
The figures are based on more than 11 million people ages 15 and older who accessed the Internet from a home or work location in Malaysia.
The August report pointed out a critical component brands need to consider when thinking about social marketing strategies, which is to leverage their Facebook fan pages to reach fans and friends of fans with social media impressions. For instance, AirAsia and My.McDonalds doubled the reach of Facebook brand impressions by reaching friends of fans based on comScore's Social Essentials measurement.
Nyuen said brands and marketers need to ensure social media is addressed in their digital strategies given its importance today. It could mean having a dedicated social media plan or simply monitoring consumer sentiment toward the brand, he explained.
Another engagement metric marketers in Malaysia should take note of is the average minutes per viewer watching online videos that increased 19 percent to 6.2 hours from the previous year for the month of August. The total number of unique viewers who watched videos increased 8 percent year-on-year to almost 9.3 million.
According to comScore Video Metrix, YouTube is the top video site accounting for 99 percent of Google's dominance ahead of other web properties at 8.8 million viewers and 457 million videos.
Facebook came in second place with half the number of viewers (4.1 million) who watched a total of 30.5 million videos. Music video website VEVO ranked third with close to 3 million viewers who watched 26.5 million videos.
Hitwise: Singaporeans spend the most time on Facebook globally
Meanwhile, an international study from Experian Hitwise revealed Singaporeans spend the most time per session on Facebook at an average of 38 minutes and 46 seconds compared to Americans at 20 minutes 46 seconds.
People in Hong Kong spend the least time per session on the social network at an average of 5 minutes, 58 seconds.
|Market||Average Time Spent on Facebook per Session|
|Singapore||38 mins 46 sec|
|New Zealand||30 mins 31 sec|
|Australia||26 mins 27 sec|
|U.K.||25 mins 33 sec|
|U.S.||20 mins 46 sec|
|India||20 mins 21 sec|
|Hong Kong||5 mins 58 sec|
Hitwise suggested that in a country like Singapore where social network users spend an average of 38 minutes on Facebook, a brand can increase the likelihood of capturing users attention by running digital marketing campaigns on the social network. But in Hong Kong, it advised brands need a different approach because Facebook users spend less time on the social network compared to the U.K. and Australia.
While the power of social networks like Facebook in some respects make the world a much smaller place, research shows the way individuals use social media can and does change according to cultural and personal background.
"Therefore 'one size definitely doesn't fit all' when it comes to digital," warned John Merakovsky, managing director of marketing services at Experian Asia Pacific.
He added that international brands that want to be successful in their digital campaigns must understand local, digital, and personal nuances.
Adaline Lau, ClickZ Asia editor, oversees day-to-day editorial operations covering digital marketing from search to social media, mobile to analytics in the region. Before ClickZ, she was senior reporter at Marketing Magazine and has worked as a journalist for The Singapore Marketer and Asia Pacific Broadcasting. Connect with her @adalinelau or Google+.
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