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March 20, 2012

Advertising's Social Side

Posted by Sandeep Dadlani (View Profile | View All Posts) at 10:37 AM

Today, the overall social media story has achieved epic status. There's nothing new to say about even the newer batch of stories. It's tweeted, liked and followed in good faith. So let's shift focus to the interesting vignettes developing within its canvas, the stories branching out from the main tale.
One of these is about the rise of social advertising and its influence on consumer behavior. During the course of several studies, a well-known research organization found that online advertising in social media or with a social context was more effective at compelling action. South East Asian consumers were particularly susceptible to its charms - 3 out of 4 said they were highly or at least somewhat influenced by advertisements in social media, compared to 3 out of 5 globally. The engagement became stronger with social context; so when the ad was for a brand that was liked or followed by friends, it favorably influenced 4 out of 5 consumers.

The research firm further tested these findings by studying around 80 Facebook ad campaigns over 6 months. They found that social ads indeed had the edge over other non-social online advertising, creating a 55% greater jump in ad recall.  Some brands have been quick to pounce on social advertising equity. Right away, I can think of two, a domestic cleaning liquid brand -  Mrs. Meyer's and Kraft's Riitz crackers my favorite snack, both of which have "not-for-us-the-run-of the-mill" kind of advertisements which viewers can click on to see what's going on in the brands' Facebook pages in real time. And it seems to work, because reportedly, consumers spent nearly thrice the time on these ads than the average for online advertising. What's more, even a relative commonplace product like a home cleaning liquid had 35 of 1,000 viewers of its ad clicking through, compared to 1 in 1,000 which Google claims is the average for regular online ads.

Maybe this is taking things too far, but I cannot resist sharing this other tidbit.  The Center for Eating Disorders recently surveyed 600 U.S. Facebook users to find that more than half of them felt more self-conscious about their physical appearance after looking at photographs posted on the social network. The think tank feels this might contribute to eating disorders. Now, is that a straightforward opportunity for wellness brands, or what?


The recent articles by infy have been great on social media. This one on consumer behaaviour is great.
Facebook niellsen study too qoutes that social context ads are more effective than those without one. Not only ads on social media are better but those with social context are even better

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