Study: Consumers Don’t Want Brands to Bother Them in Social Networks

Are you a social media marketer that has set up a Facebook page to get all your consumers to be ‘friends’ with you? If so, you may want to know that a recent study revealed 57 percent of people in developed markets globally do not want to engage with brands via social media.

The study conducted by WPP group’s TNS showed that South Koreans are the least receptive to engage with brands on social media at 66 percent, followed by Australians at 58 percent.

Compared to its counterparts, Hong Kong (42 percent) and Singapore (43 percent) ranked the lowest in Asia Pacific that had no interest in brands on social networks.

Brand profiles on social networks could be a cheap and quick way to connect directly with consumers, but if these efforts are not carefully targeted, they are wasted on 51 percent of those online in the Asia Pacific region, according to the study.

Social Commerce

Consumers in India are the most eager to see social networks as a good place to buy products from brands at 59 percent compared to developed markets globally at just a quarter. In fast growth markets like Malaysia, Indonesia, Philippines, Thailand, and Vietnam, the figure goes up to 48 percent.

When it comes to online shopping habits, Asian consumers are leading the adoption of group buying and mobile commerce.

For instance, almost 46 percent of Chinese consumers already use group-buying tools.

In terms of shopping via mobile, China and South Korea lead the pack at 34 percent compared to Vietnam at just 2 percent.

Arnaud Frade, regional director digital strategy at TNS Asia Pacific also shared with in a phone interview six tips for marketers based on the report:

  1. Being joined up. Brands that have been successful are extremely joined up in terms of their marketing strategy and brand strategy that are developed across different media channels and platforms.
  2. Ensure your content works well across different distribution channels. A lot of consumers across Asia Pacific today access digital content through mobile or tablets and a small minority through interactive TV. Make sure your content is portable. In India, for instance, with 20 million new mobile subscribers per month, it creates a need for ensuring that content is ported to these devices.
  3. Be relevant to consumers. Deliver a business strategy that looks at both content and digital services. Have a focused strategy and not just various activities because a brand feels it has to be on a particular platform.
  4. Make sure your brand is really engaging with consumers. In particular, confronting the negative feedback you may get. Brands that are successful online actually embraced those aspects that are not so positive about their products and services. They could do it through a dedicated moderator or have a policy in place to respond to every message or have active and open conversations on social networks to drive positive word-of-mouth. Even if something doesn’t work, you should still have an appropriate response.
  5. Align your social networks and activities with other key touch points in the consumer journey. Ensure you are not creating disconnect. This means being able to connect your sales process to brand equity and growth to shopper experience process and make sure these are all tied up and connected.

Further findings of this Digital Life Study could be found on its website, which features interactive data visuals on:

  • Top trends of the most popular activities today and emerging trends by countries.
  • How open people are to brands and buying products on social networks, which can be filtered by gender and demographics.
  • Tracking the path to purchase for online and offline by product category from automotive to finance to consumer electronics.

This TNS research was conducted in 60 countries with more than 72,000 consumers to ascertain how they behave online and why they do what they do.

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