Social Media: A Marketing Fail?

Today on, reporter Joe Mandese covers the new report from Knowledge Networks called "How People Use Social Media." The report claims that now with over 83% of internet users utilizing social networks, less than 5% of these individuals turn to social media for advice on specific products. The Knowledge Network's report says that people are turning to social media to connect with individuals and finding a rich experience when joining a social networking site; however, these individuals are not finding it to be a "meaningful" way to connect with brands and products.

Mandese reports, "Obviously, a lot of people are using social media, but they are not explicitly turning to it for marketing purposes, or for finding out what products to buy. It's really about connecting with friends, or connecting with other people," says Dave Tice, vice president and group account director at Knowledge Networks, and the top analyst behind the report. "What we're seeing is that word-of-mouth is still the No. 1 most influential source, followed by TV. The influence of social media isn't at the bottom of the list, but it is somewhere in the long tail of marketing - about the same as print ads, or online [display] ads."

As a social media professional, we encourage you to read Mandese's article in its entirety.

Social Media Fails To Manifest As Marketing Medium, Report Likens Twitter To TiVo: More Hype Than Reality

Has social media worked for marketing? Will it ever be a valuable vehicle for marketers to connect with their audience on a more personal level?


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elastic back said...

Perhaps these people in question need to be reminded that Amazon reviews are part of the social networking spectrum. I think that would change the results quite a bit. Also, with word of mouth being the number one driver of purchase intent, you have to take into consideration the large amount of WOM happening on SNs regularly. Just because a user doesn't search out product information on a SN doesn't mean they don't get it.

- Eby Ghafarian

Unknown said...

The confusion here is that what this article is really talking about are social networks! Social media is a generic term to describe tools that enable people to connect with each other through a range of different ways. Some social media implementations like reviews on Amazon have been repeatedly proven to help purchase decisions.