We are all aware of social media’s power in this new digital world. It influences purchases differently – from helping consumers know about multiple brands to enabling digital commerce. Word of mouth has always played an integral role in making marketing effective for a business. You might also be one of those who read social media comments to learn about different people’s experiences about a particular brand or company. These words come as easily from a social media site as a neighbor living across the fence.
Millennials Are Taking Over
According to Jungle Scout’s new report, consumers tend to rely on social media comments to have an idea about the quality of the service a company or brand is offering. The generation that spends most of its time on social media is surprisingly millennials. 47% of the purchases millennials make are based on what they see or read on social media.
Compared to other generations, it is 1.6 times more likely to use social media to learn about a new product or service. It puts social media in a prime position to execute the most successful marketing campaigns.
Another survey was conducted recently, which included 1000 US adults as a sample. According to the study, 48% agreed that they read comments on social media before making any purchase.
It matters to them what people think about the brand they choose to buy any product or service. It also shortens the customer journey as this process takes only a few minutes. After reading a review or a comment, they just have to click on the link to buy the product.
Social media users are also likely to spend four times more money on making online purchases.
Moreover, the impact of social proof is quite evident from the research. It affects mostly friends, family, or people you know or follow. Likewise, people on social media don’t just follow the people they know but also celebrities and influencers. That is where influencer marketing also plays its role. The comments of influencers on social media posts of a brand or company make an impression on the mind of consumers.
In addition, 46% of the US adults agreed that brands must respond to their consumers in the social media comments section. This way, social media comments have become a new source of information and knowledge that people should have before making any final purchase decision.
The other relevant concern is brand engagement on social media, regarding which 53% agree that they rely on the product descriptions added to online posts. It gives them an idea about the reputation and credibility of the brand. Here’s some more information:
- 37% said that they prefer brand videos on social media.
- 20% disagree with this statement.
- 43% are neutral.
Images have always dominated the posts on social media; however, marketers plan to use videos of their products or services on social media platforms. Live video on Facebook has also grown in the last few years. According to Jungle Scout’s, 35% of the consumers said they had purchased a brand’s product or service after watching its live video on social media platforms.
YouTube is considered the most trusted platform for finding and purchasing products compared to other social media platforms. But another authentic research reveals that Facebook is the most preferred platform, which is more likely to lead consumers to purchase. Instagram also greatly impacts its users by showing off products through multiple posts or stories. The comment section on Instagram posts attracts active users. Moreover, Instagram facilitates shopping by adding tags and check-out options to every post. 130 million Instagram users click on the shopping posts to read comments and learn more about the products.
According to Jungle Scout, the last yet most important revelation about social media is that almost half of the respondents (46%) said that they often see ads for different products and services on the Internet, which they browsed on social media platforms.
Retargeting has been used as one of the most common social media strategies, but historically these ads haven’t been proved to have a strong appeal to consumers. According to the latest study, 43% of the respondents said that it is just common practice and they don’t get affected by it in any way. The other 42% said that it has been helpful for them because this way, they are reminded of the product or service they were about to buy.
So, it eventually leads them to make the purchasing decision. One-third admits that retargeting ads creep them out as they feel like being stalked. It makes them feel intimidated, and they prefer to avoid such ads and services. One quarter said they want such ads to stop or appear in front of them.
It is obvious from the research data and studies that social media influences buyers’ purchasing decisions. Multiple factors of social media affect the buyer. This includes the following:
- Shortened customer journey
- Social proof
- Influencer marketing
Now, it is high time for marketers to start putting their time and efforts into making their brands stand out from others on social media platforms. They must run their social media marketing campaigns using updated technology to ensure that people start talking good things about them in the comment sections, groups, reviews, etc.