Posts Tagged ‘market research’

Americans expect companies to have a presence in social media: Too bad, Americans

Tuesday, October 7th, 2008

I just saw this press release from Cone LLC touting some results of a survey they did about companies and their presence on social media sites. According to the survey:

– 60% of Americans interact with companies on a social media Web site.
– 25% interact more than once per week.
– 56% of American consumers feel a stronger connection with and better served by companies when they can interact with them in a social media environment.

Confusing statsThese results are actually shocking to me, primarily because I have a hard time believing that 56% of Americans have interacted with a company using social media. I’m not sure how Cone is defining “social media” – perhaps their definition is broader than the one that I would give the term. But I really can’t believe that many companies are up and active and using social media effectively enough to have interacted with their customers using that medium.

I have heard the examples (as you have) about Comcast and Zappos using Twitter. I know that many consumer facing sites are using Facebook and MySpace. But are this many businesses really using social media enough to be communicating with their customers that way?

Apparently I’m not the only one who is perplexed by these figures. This blog post by Steven Hodson at WinExtra says it better than I would, so please link over and read his post if you’re skeptical about the numbers, too.

But taking the study at its word, this is really bad news for businesses that aren’t using social media. Those slackers better catch on immediately. According to the study, 93% of Americans believe that a company should have a presence in social media.

Photo by aeu04117

Q3 2007 Internet advertising numbers

Monday, November 12th, 2007

This is an update to the Q2 statistics on Internet advertising that I posted awhile back. Today the Internet Advertising Bureau (IAB) and PricewaterhouseCoopers released the Internet advertising numbers for the third quarer. According to the release:

“Internet advertising revenues exceeded $5.2 billion for the third quarter of 2007…a $1.1 billion increase, or 25.3%, over Q3 2006. The results…are nearly 3% higher than Q2 2007, itself the last record-setting quarter. Revenues for the first nine months of 2007 totaled $15.2 billion, up nearly 26% over the $12.1 billion recorded during the first nine months of 2006.”

Trust and Internet advertising

Sunday, October 28th, 2007

I just read an article called “The Trust Issue” by David Morgan in the Online Spin blog. In the post, Morgan is referencing a report from Nielsen that shows that consumers don’t trust Internet advertising. Here’s an excerpt:

A global study from Nielsen … found consumers don’t trust Internet advertising nearly as much as they trust traditional forms of advertising. The Nielsen study, based on an online survey of more than 26,000 consumers, asked respondents their perceptions of different forms of advertising. The results? Consumers rated Internet advertising at the bottom when it comes to trust as compared to offline media. Specifically, 63% said they trust newspaper ads, 56% trusted TV spots and magazine placements — while search ads got a trust thumbs-up from just 34%, and banner ads were trusted by just 26% of the respondents.

He goes on to talk about some ways to help change consumer perception about online advertising. It’s a good article, go read it. But as much as I am an advocate for the Internet and Internet advertising, and as much as I would like us to work at changing negative perceptions about the Internet, I actually agree with the consumers – they are right to not trust Internet advertising as much as they trust TV or print.

TV and print advertising is obvious. You can tell – with close to 100% accuracy – when something is an advertisement and when something isn’t. And I think that this is the main reason why Internet advertising got such low marks – not necessarily because the ads themselves weren’t trustworthy (although that is probably part of it), but because consumers are unsure when they are being shown an ad, and when it’s “real content.”

There are so many ways that Internet advertising is fuzzy. Just think of Google, the second most popular Web site in the U.S., according to Alexa. On the Google search results page, ads run at the top and along the sides – and they are clearly labeled – but many consumers still don’t realize that they are looking at ads because the results look very similar to the organic search results. And what is listed in those ads is sometimes misleading. And that is just one example – there are many others. Bloggers are paid by companies to write reviews of their products with services such as ReviewMe. Parked domains gather advertising revenue from direct navigation (when keywords are typed directly into the search bar), the sites seem like they are providing information, but they are really just collecting PPC dollars. Pop-up ads arise from nowhere and refuse to disappear.

I love the Internet and I am a fan of these new and exciting business models, but there just aren’t the same standards online when it comes to the separation of “editorial” and “marketing” – it is sometimes hard to know what is an ad and what isn’t. In my opinion, at this point, the consumers are right to mistrust.

Growth is the reason that the Internet is slowly killing print

Monday, October 8th, 2007

Internet advertising for the first half of 2007 hit $10 billion – up 27% from the same period last year, according to a recent Internet Advertising Revenue Report released by the IAB.

 Even though the various types of Internet advertising still make up only a small percentage of the overall ad industry (about 9.5%), the growth of Internet advertising is predicted to be 85% between 2006 and 2009. 85%!!! That is a huge amount of growth.

And growth is the reason that online advertising is having such a negative impact on print. Business is always moving toward areas of growth and away from stagnant, declining markets. You can see this trend clearly if you look at IT and business magazines. Print publications in this market are shutting their doors. Business 2.0 just closed. InfoWorld announced earlier this year that it would move to online-only, saying, “Frankly, the editorial staff foresaw the demise of print from a long way off and began making preparations for that inevitable day.” 

Things are shifting and the print world is going to have to adjust, the faster the better.

 

~ Today’s view: http://www.flickr.com/photos/13799608@N08/1517785063/