Despite more than 6 billion visitors in 2011, Australians are still hesitant to rate Facebook and other social media networks in their top three trusted sources for information, according to research firm Experian Hitwise.
About 58 per cent of brands in Australia have a presence on social media, but only 18 per cent of consumers rate it as a trusted source of information about a company or brand. Even Wikipedia made the top three for 25 per cent.
“It’s understandable that consumers currently lack trust toward brand activity on social media, and this is a completely normal part of the evolution curve of any new form of marketing communication,” said Matt Glasner, general manager of Experian marketing services. “These platforms are social, designed as a way for people to communicate with friends and peers and this opportunity to engage doesn’t automatically extend to brands.”
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Brands using social media are expected to increase their marketing budget for social media advertising and channel development during the next 12 months. A significant investment when 40 per cent of marketers do not have measurement tools in place for their social media strategies, Glaser said.
Australians spent an average of 26.49 minutes on Facebook per session in 2011, presenting an opportunity for brands into this audience. The launch of Experian Social can help brands fully utilize Facbook ads at the lowest possible cost and reach their desired audience to build a strong online community. This can finally allow marketers to break down every campaign to demonstrate return-on-investment, understand influencers and develop key insights to retain and cultivate their social media customer base.
“Using the tool, brands can launch multiple targeted campaigns in a matter of minutes, helping brands build valuable exposure with target audiences over a short period of time. Marketers will be able to demonstrate the effectiveness and ROI on each individual ad campaign launched,” Glasner said.
Money spent on social media will increase, and brands will become more engaged with acrive and interested online audiences, Glasner concluded.