By Liam Dowd - February 19th, 2014
When is a Like not a Like?, the social consumer and how active is Google+?
How active is Google+?
Drawing on a number of statistics, a new infographic from We Are Social indicates that Google+ now has an amazing 1.5 billion users, but these headline figures are tempered by the fact that according to their research only 35% of that vast number are actually active across the social network.
Mobile platforms not surprisingly are the most popular way to access the network, and when you focus on just the UK, a similar level of user engagement is seen. There have been many naysayers about the future of Google+, but with its parent company placing the network increasingly at the heart of all its activities – you need an active Google+ account to use the new YouTube comments system – Google+ isn’t going away anytime soon. It’s now up to brands to become more creative to engage with their followers across this network.
When is a Like not a Like?
Fraud across social media can take many forms, with privacy and identity theft gaining most of the headlines. The video below however, is nine minutes well spent, as it looks closely at Facebook Life fraud that many corporate users so the network may have already fallen foul of. The message is simple: brands need to pay close attention to their networks, and avoid shady and unsubstantiated mechanisms for increasing the number of Likes they have.
The social customer
The Sprout Social Index looks at channel growth, brand responsiveness, and consumer behaviour across more than 160 million inbound messages across 20,000 brand profiles and fan pages. The rate at which consumers are adopting social media to ask for help, make buying decisions, lodge complaints, and have an on-going dialogue is remarkable. However, the ability of brands to keep up with the demand is declining under the pressure.
The super shoppers are here
One thing that is clear when social media is considered is the immense impact that these networks have had on commerce. E-commerce has transformed into M-commerce thanks largely to the desire to access social media networks on the move.
Brands and their stakeholders now need to leverage those relationships that will increasingly lead to high levels of conversion. According to a new report from Deloitte, and commissioned by eBay, 30% users of mobile devices are more likely to research a purchase using multiple channels via their mobile devices, with the value of the final purchase being up to 50% more than if a single channel was used.
“Customers are in the driving seat and pushing retailers for ever higher standards of service and greater convenience,” said Tanya Lawler, vice president of eBay in the UK. “Customers fully expect your store and online channels to be joined up and can have little patience if they aren’t. For example, they want to collect in store or return via the store, even if they bought online.”
The research did look at the actual impact that social media now has on the buying cycle and found that nearly a third of Internet users follow brands with 22% claiming to be influenced by a brand’s social media presence. In addition, 30% of consumers post purchase also engages with the brand via social media networks.
“This study sets out to answer the question of how shopping beyond the store is affecting offline retailing,” explained Ian Geddes, head of retail at Deloitte. “While this is a sector specific study and more research is required to draw industry-level conclusions, it suggests that a broad presence across channels can in many scenarios positively influence store sales. It highlights a significant opportunity for retailers to use a mix of stores and online presence to boost the bottom line, selling at home and abroad.”
Until next time….
The Useful Social Media team.
June 2014, New York
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