Social Media is the hottest topic in marketing circles right now and many businesses (around the world, not just in New Zealand) are feeling pressured to get involved with social outlets such as Facebook or Twitter. Small wonder — research analysts eMarketer are reporting that social media has reached the tipping point, with more than half of all U.S. internet users now frequenting social spaces in a typical month.
Where the U.S. goes, can New Zealand be far behind? Actually, we may well be ahead of them. 82% of New Zealand internet users have been to Facebook — and more than 1.75 million Kiwis now have an account on the site [Source: Nielsen NZ Social Media Report July 2010].
And it’s becoming habitual — half of us visit the Facebook site at least once a day, to catch up on what our friends are doing (and to tell them where we’ve been and what we’ve done).
So Kiwis can now be found in large numbers hanging out on social networks. Should marketers be there too? Absolutely, notes eMarketer, channeling the results of a February 2010 survey by Chadwick Martin Bailey, a market research firm. According to their data, 33% of U.S. Facebook users have become fans of brands on the network.
And plenty more social network users are talking about brands online. Whether it’s good news or bad news, if it’s hot it spreads in milliseconds across the social networks.
An unfortunate example? On September 26 2009 Kraft launched the glorious new Vegemite iSnack 2.0 in the quarter-time adbreak of the AFL Grand Final. Before the adbreak was even over, tweets of death were resounding across Australia and thence across the world:
NO! Vegemite cream cheese product CANNOT POSSIBLY be called “Vegemite iSnack 2.0″. Bad joke or most epic FAIL in FMCG branding history” – tweeted by downesy
I said “do you speaka my language?” She just smiled and gave me an iSnack 2.0 sandwich. #vegefail – tweeted by jmappellekim
On the rather more positive side, a recent Nielsen/Facebook joint study showed significant uplift in Advertising Recall, Awareness and Purchase Intent amongst those brands “liked” in Social Media.
Nervous yet? Worried about your brand? Or just eager to take advantage of the added value if fans ‘love you’ socially?
It’s time to upskill yourself on social media — it’s too late to be an early adopter, but now would be a good time to start getting yourself socially adept. Check out our ecourses.