Is social media taking over brand discovery?
Through a special arrangement, presented here for discussion is a summary of a current article from MarketingCharts, a Watershed Publishing publication providing up-to-the-minute data and research to marketers.
Word-of-mouth (62 percent) edges TV ads (61 percent) and online ads (61 percent) as the leading way by which teens hear about new brands, according to a survey from Ebates. The results indicate that, while physical stores (58 percent) are among the leading methods of brand awareness for teens, social media also has a significant role to play.
Indeed, about half (49 percent) of teen respondents to the survey reported having heard about a new brand from Instagram, with this platform considerably ahead of both Facebook (37 percent) and Twitter (30 percent). While the study did not net the results for social media as an overall medium, the sizable proportions for each specific platform suggest that social media in the aggregate would be one of the leading brand discovery vehicles for teens. It’s worth noting that two-thirds of the respondents are female, which may influence the results, as women are consistently ahead of men in social media adoption.
(Newspapers and radio were not offered as options in the survey, though another traditional medium — magazines — failed to garner a large share with teen respondents.)
Not surprisingly, teens’ responses differed markedly from those of adult respondents in some areas. For adults, TV ads (70 percent) emerged as the top vehicle for new brand discovery, ahead of word-of-mouth. That’s an interesting result in light of research suggesting that global consumers are more likely to learn of new products via word-of-mouth than TV ads. Additionally, MarketingCharts research into perceived ad effectiveness indicates that word-of-mouth influences purchases for more American adults than TV ads.
Returning to the Ebates survey, Instagram (a favorite among teens) is less of a new brand discovery vehicle for adults (25 percent) than teens (49 percent), though adults (47 percent) are more likely than teens (37 percent) to hear about new brands through Facebook. As one might expect given their audience composition, magazines are more likely to be a source of new brand discovery for adults (45 percent) than teens (29 percent).
- Ebates Survey: Adults (96 percent) and Teens (95 percent) Agree—Retail Therapy Is Good for the Soul – MarketingCharts
- Social Media Update: Adoption Trends, by Demographic – MarketingCharts
- Consumers’ Sources of New Product Awareness – MarketingCharts
- Advertising Channels With the Largest Purchase Influence on Consumers – MarketingCharts
- Instagram Remains Teens’ Most Important Social Network; Snapchat Gains Steam – MarketingCharts
- US Media Audience Demographics – MarketingCharts
Do you agree that brand discovery is changing because of social media? Will today’s teens graduate to discovering brands through more traditional methods such TV and magazines as they age?