By Jack M. Germain
6/18/2021 4:00 AM PT
Consumers will spend more money shopping online this summer seeing ads on social media when offers are offered by vendors. Shoppers are also more receptive to chat commerce, a potential new trend.
Smartly.io, a social advertising automation platform for creative and performance marketers, announced new research on April 29th highlighting the role social media can play in influencing shoppers in a pandemic-changed world.
Brands are now more than ever looking for ways to stay relevant. Marketers need to be prepared for every possible scenario as they face different stages of reopening in different regions. You also need to be aware of a number of consumer preferences, noted the Smartly researchers.
The Smartly survey found that consumers still rely on social media to keep in touch. In particular, more than half (56 percent) of global respondents and 64 percent of UK respondents said they used social media to connect with friends and family.
Dynata conducted the global survey of 1,000 consumers in the US, UK, Germany and Australia. The study examined today’s consumer sentiment regarding social media. The results provide insightful insights for brands to consider for their advertising strategies.
Consumers expect a return to normal. This in turn reflects their willingness to spend, said Robert Rothschild, CMO, vice president and global head of marketing at Smartly.io.
“For brands, social media is a powerful way to reach targeted consumers. To be successful, marketing teams need to align their strategy with current consumer preferences across platforms, formats, and audiences. Relevant, localized, and timely content is key. to gain market share in a competitive market, “he told the E-Commerce Times.
Recent research by chat commerce provider Clickatell shows a growing interest among consumers in using the chat apps they use to talk to friends and family – to make purchases. This could be a complement to social media advertising influencing consumers.
Although the report mainly focuses on the use of chat apps for dealing with banks, it also shows an increasing attractiveness for the use of chat apps to buy goods.
Clickatell’s first Chat Commerce Trends Report found that 70 percent of respondents would use a chat app with banks and retailers as a channel of communication. The report also found that 77 percent are open to purchases through their chat apps.
Survey results of over 1,000 US banking customers, published March 30th by Dimensional Research in partnership with Clickatell, suggest chat is the next big thing in customer service, marketing, and payments. US consumers are showing an interest in extending their use of friends’ chats and family conversations to retail.
Almost nine out of ten consumers already use chat apps such as WhatsApp, Apple’s iMessage, Facebook Messenger, Twitter and Instagram chat on mobile devices, as the study shows. It also shows that 54 percent have used a chat app to speak to a company, with the younger generations doing so at even higher prices.
Consumers have started chatting en masse. According to Pieter de Villiers, CEO and co-founder of Clickatell, it is becoming the platform of choice for digital engagement.
“This research shows that they are now ready to do business with the brands they love through their favorite chat apps,” he said. “Banks and other brands need to meet consumers where they are, in chat, or risk losing their minds.”
Fundamental new marketing tool
Social media is becoming a fundamental part of the marketing stack, suggested Robert Rothschild in a Smartly blog, where he discussed the “Social Advertising Forecast 2021 for Retail”.
Retail was way ahead of other industries by incorporating social media advertising into its marketing mix. The accelerated move to e-commerce in 2020, fueled by a global pandemic, further underscored the value of this strategy, according to Rothschild.
“It became clear that social advertising is essential to targeting the right consumers,” he wrote in his November 19, 2020 post.
According to the survey results, Facebook remains the most popular social media platform, followed by YouTube and Instagram. More than a third of global consumers (38 percent) said they used Facebook the most in the month before the survey.
YouTube reached 18 percent and Instagram 15 percent. In addition, global consumers are currently most open to video ads on social media (27 percent), followed by photo carousels (23 percent) and stories (19 percent).
One year and included in the various waves of Covid-19, pandemic fatigue has not yet hit consumers. More than half of global consumers (51 percent) said they still want brands to recognize the pandemic in their ads. For example, you might want to see how brands relate to security measures and updated store opening hours.
Consumers are opening their wallets more as the pandemic continues to develop. For example, 35 percent of global consumers said that the social media ads they recently encountered drove them to buy online. That spending trend rose from 26 percent in August 2020 when Smartly.io previously surveyed consumers.
Additionally, 38 percent of global consumers said they would be most open to buying clothes / apparel through social media in the next 30 days. But they want additional incentives like offers and discounts.
Additionally, 45 percent of respondents worldwide said they would like to see ads with offers and discounts from travel brands. This is particularly high in Australia, where 59 percent of respondents said they looked for offers and discounts in advertisements from travel companies.
Finally, 55 percent of global respondents said they would like to see offers and discounts in grocery store advertisements, followed by local offers from nearby stores (42 percent).
About the study
Smartley.io commissioned Dynata to survey 1,000 adult consumers to understand their social media preferences and attitudes, including channel usage, ad interaction, and purchasing decisions.
The respondents were in the US, UK, Germany and Australia. All respondents were over 18 years old. The survey was conducted in March 2021.