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The impact of social media marketing communications on consumers perception of brands   kayode adeola
The impact of social media marketing communications on consumers perception of brands   kayode adeola
The impact of social media marketing communications on consumers perception of brands   kayode adeola
The impact of social media marketing communications on consumers perception of brands   kayode adeola
The impact of social media marketing communications on consumers perception of brands   kayode adeola
The impact of social media marketing communications on consumers perception of brands   kayode adeola
The impact of social media marketing communications on consumers perception of brands   kayode adeola
The impact of social media marketing communications on consumers perception of brands   kayode adeola
The impact of social media marketing communications on consumers perception of brands   kayode adeola
The impact of social media marketing communications on consumers perception of brands   kayode adeola
The impact of social media marketing communications on consumers perception of brands   kayode adeola
The impact of social media marketing communications on consumers perception of brands   kayode adeola
The impact of social media marketing communications on consumers perception of brands   kayode adeola
The impact of social media marketing communications on consumers perception of brands   kayode adeola
The impact of social media marketing communications on consumers perception of brands   kayode adeola
The impact of social media marketing communications on consumers perception of brands   kayode adeola
The impact of social media marketing communications on consumers perception of brands   kayode adeola
The impact of social media marketing communications on consumers perception of brands   kayode adeola
The impact of social media marketing communications on consumers perception of brands   kayode adeola
The impact of social media marketing communications on consumers perception of brands   kayode adeola
The impact of social media marketing communications on consumers perception of brands   kayode adeola
The impact of social media marketing communications on consumers perception of brands   kayode adeola
The impact of social media marketing communications on consumers perception of brands   kayode adeola
The impact of social media marketing communications on consumers perception of brands   kayode adeola
The impact of social media marketing communications on consumers perception of brands   kayode adeola
The impact of social media marketing communications on consumers perception of brands   kayode adeola
The impact of social media marketing communications on consumers perception of brands   kayode adeola
The impact of social media marketing communications on consumers perception of brands   kayode adeola
The impact of social media marketing communications on consumers perception of brands   kayode adeola
The impact of social media marketing communications on consumers perception of brands   kayode adeola
The impact of social media marketing communications on consumers perception of brands   kayode adeola
The impact of social media marketing communications on consumers perception of brands   kayode adeola
The impact of social media marketing communications on consumers perception of brands   kayode adeola
The impact of social media marketing communications on consumers perception of brands   kayode adeola
The impact of social media marketing communications on consumers perception of brands   kayode adeola
The impact of social media marketing communications on consumers perception of brands   kayode adeola
The impact of social media marketing communications on consumers perception of brands   kayode adeola
The impact of social media marketing communications on consumers perception of brands   kayode adeola
The impact of social media marketing communications on consumers perception of brands   kayode adeola
The impact of social media marketing communications on consumers perception of brands   kayode adeola
The impact of social media marketing communications on consumers perception of brands   kayode adeola
The impact of social media marketing communications on consumers perception of brands   kayode adeola
The impact of social media marketing communications on consumers perception of brands   kayode adeola
The impact of social media marketing communications on consumers perception of brands   kayode adeola
The impact of social media marketing communications on consumers perception of brands   kayode adeola
The impact of social media marketing communications on consumers perception of brands   kayode adeola
The impact of social media marketing communications on consumers perception of brands   kayode adeola
The impact of social media marketing communications on consumers perception of brands   kayode adeola
The impact of social media marketing communications on consumers perception of brands   kayode adeola
The impact of social media marketing communications on consumers perception of brands   kayode adeola
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  • 1. The Impact of Social Media Marketing Communications on Consumers Perception of Brands. by Kayode Adeola Olakunle (www.adeolakayode.com ~ @delola) Advertising Practitioners Council of Nigeria (APCON) March 2012 1
  • 2. CERTIFICATIONThis is to certify that this project; The Impact of Social Media MarketingCommunications on Consumers Perception of Brands by Kayode Adeola (S/0006112~ 01/PDA/0055 ) was undertaken under my supervision as a prerequisite to obtaninig aProfessional Diploma in Advertising from the Advertising Practitioners Council of Nigeria(APCON).________________________Mr. Uche Aligbe, frpaProject Supervsor. 2
  • 3. AKNOWLEDGEMENTIn the beginning God... without him theres no beginning. You are my competitive advantage. 2011was huge, lets make 2012 greater.To my late Dad, Otunba Z. O. Kayode you have always been a source of encouragement. Ill workto raise the bar higher. To my Mum, G.A. Kayode, thank you for your support especially in times ofdrought. On the day of harvest, you wont be missing.My siblings; the Famous Five, Tola, Dolapo and Folake; also Funmilola who went through theimpossible to get the hard-bound copies of this project ready. To Teekay, Sisinmi and Aunty Yinka,may our tomorrow speak volumes.I ackowledge the support of alI staff in the Career Matters division of APCON. Thank you for theadvice, attention and support especially when I come barging in. I am proud to recognize thecontributions of my indefatigable supervisor, Mr. Uche Aligbe frpa. He gave me all the attentionand support I needed to get this project done well and in good time. The advertising professionneeds more like you.Finally to my wife Martha, thank you for your support. Thank you for letting me abscond during ourwedding to get my exams done. Thank you for being a great cheerleader, support and booster.May we have greater opportunities to rejoice.Thanks for being there. 3
  • 4. Table of Contents i. Acknowledgement ii. List of Figuresiii. Chapter 1: Introductioniv. Chapter 2: Review of Related Literature v. Chapter 3: Research Methodologyvi. Chapter 4: Data Presentation and Analysisvii. Chapter 5: Conclusion and Recommendation 4
  • 5. Table of Charts i. Figure 1: Pie Chart showing if respondents respond to online advertisement (%) ii. Figure 2: Pie Chart showing respondents responses to their membership of Brands social pages (%) iii. Figure 3: Bar Chart showing respondents responses to their motives for enlisting on Social Media pages (%) iv. Figure 4: Bar Chart showing their propensity to share brand experiences (%) v. Figure 5: Bar Chart showing respondents motive for sharing brand experiences (%) vi. Figure 6: Bar Chart showing the significance of others experiences on their buying decision (%)vii. Figure 7: Bar Chart showing which information platforms influence their buying decision on brands (%)viii. Figure 8: Pie Chart showing gender ratio of the respondents (%) ix. Figure 9: Doughnut Chart showing the gender of the respondents from Social Bakers Analytics (%) x. Figure 10: Bar Chart showing the age range of the respondents (%) xi. Figure 11: Doughnut Chart showing the age range of the respondents Social Bakers Analytics (%)xii. Figure 12: Bar Chart showing income range of the respondents (%)xiii. Figure 13: Bar Chart showing social presence of the respondents (%) 5
  • 6. xiv. Figure 14: Pie Chart showing daily hours spent online by respondents (%) xv. Figure 15: Pie Chart showing daily hours spent on social media platforms by respondents (%) xvi. Figure 16: Pie Chart showing why respondents joined social networks (%)xvii. Figure 17: Pie Chart showing why respondents joined social networks (%)xviii. Figure 18: Pie Chart showing if the respondents have ever responded to online advertisements (%) xix. Figure 19: Pie Chart showing how respondents feel about online advertising (%) 6
  • 7. Chapter 1: IntroductionBackground of the StudySocial Media Marketing (SMM) refers to the process of disseminating messages, gaininginternet traffic or attention through social media websites [1] in order to promote apersonality, cause or business. It involves all methods, strategies, channels and platformsaimed at using social media platforms to communicate and engage a defined targetaudience in order to met a defined marketing objective .The convergence of technology and Social Media have changed the way people interactwith one another and businesses can no more ignore these digital communities. TheInternet has simplified business communication thereby improving the way companiessell, promote products and services. Product distribution has been made global andcommunication instantaneous; news travel within seconds making today‘s newspapersgood only for yesterday‘s information. The effect on brands can be either extremelypositive or negative depending on the perception of consumers. The purpose of this studyis to examine the effect of Social Media Marketing messages and how they haveinfluenced consumers perception of brands.Social Media Marketing Communications typically centres on efforts by an individual ororganisation to create media content (music, article, video) that communicates marketingmessages that attract attention and encourage its target audience to experience, interactand share information with their social networks (either online or offline) to meet a businessobjective. A corporate message on social media spreads from user to user andpresumably resonates because it appears to come from a trusted, third-party source, asopposed to the brand or company itself [2]. This form of paid marketing is therefore an 7
  • 8. earned media rather than paid media because of the degree of trust earned by those whoshare it.Social Media Advertising is gaining the attention of businesses and brands because ofbasic advantages which include; its relatively lower costs, targeted advertising,measurement, personalised messages, and a great opportunity to drive traffic fromleading social networking sites to business and brands personalised platforms (orbusiness websites).Statement of Problem:As with other countries around the world; social networks and blogs continue to dominatetimes spent online by users. In the United States, social networking accounts for nearly aquarter of total time spent on the Internet with nearly 4 in 5 active Internet users visitingsocial networks than they do on any other U.S. website [3]. Nigeria has an internetpenetration of about 43.9 million representing a population that is 4 Million less the entirepopulation of South Africa; a combined internet population of Egypt, South Africa,Morocco and Kenya [4]. The country also represents one of the fastest growing countrieson Facebook, the worlds largest Social Networking website with about 4,312,060 peoplein Nigeria [5].While most businesses and top-level executives agree to the rise and rapid adoption ofsocial media as a platform for communication and digital conversations in Nigeria, theresthe usual reluctance of testing new ideas and understanding the impact of these platformson brands. Some have adopted the basic online strategies of setting up adverts throughmobile phones and major websites. According to InMobi 2011 report, Nigeria shows thefastest mobile advertising growth in mobile markets in Africa from February to May 2011representing 2 of every 5 mobile ads across the continent [6]. 8
  • 9. But beyond the ideas of push advertising, the online environment includes several distinctfactors that engender brand loyalty. As consumers become more savvy about the Internet,the impact of their behaviour, perception and interactions will influence brand loyalty [7].Social Media Marketing communication is beyond advertising on Facebook and Yahoo, itinvolves a lot more. People can instantaneously respond to businesses offline tactics,online adverts, marketing policies and even rumors. The implications is not about whenbrands willl adopt online platforms, it is about how.The development, nurturing and maintenance of consumer brand trust on the internetneeds to be integrated into companies‘ marketing plans and promotion mix, Fournier, S.and Yao, J. (1997) proposes it will become very important especially in the face of highlycompetitive markets with increasing unpredictability and decreasing productdifferentiation [8].Research Objectives:Because of the wide acceptance of Social Media platforms and its ability to enhancecommunication and interaction both between brands and consumers on one hand, andamong consumers, it has become imperative that today‘s brands especially in Nigeriatake advantage of the opportunities that exist for constant communication, targetedadvertising, low cost per lead, customer engagement and interaction across theseplatforms. Constant and consistent two-way communication will help brands not onlycreate superior products or services but build long-term relationships with consumers.This increases brand equity and loyalty, which ultimately positively impacts the bottom lineand the competitive edge and sustainability of the brand.In the light of the foregoing, the objectives of this Project include the following;i. To ascertain the online social media habits of prospective media content consumers 9
  • 10. ii. To measure how their online activities influence brand perceptioniii. To measure the impact of their response to SMM messagesiv. To measure the effectiveness of SMM and engagement campaigns on consumer perceptionv. To explore how Nigerian agencies are engaging their target audiencevi. To examine their attitude towards messages received through SMM messagesvii. To measure the degree of reliability of SMM messagesResearch Questions/ Hypothesis:The research is designed to test the following hypothesis which tends to propose thefollowing concepts;H1 – People find social media advertising as a very useful channel in getting informationabout products and services.Social Media and online advertising is supported by strong analytic and targeted metricssuch that adverts are seen by people who see the adverts as relevant to them. While itmay be intrusive, it is expected that people who see online adverts should see them asrelevant.H2 – It is opined that social media is a veritable tool to nurture Brand LoyaltyWith Social Media being unique through User-generated content (UGC) and two-waycommunication, it is a veritable tool for building Brand Loyalty. The 2008 Cone Business inSocial Media Study found that of the 60 percent of Americans who use social media, 93percent believe companies should have a presence in social media. 85 percent of thispopulation also believe a company should not only be present but also interact with itsconsumers via social media and 56 percent of users feel both a stronger connection with 10
  • 11. and better served by companies when they can interact with them in a social mediaenvironment [9]. Steve Outing in his own book, Enabling Social Company opines that―when companies listen to what the audience is saying—and build online venues thatencourage consumers to express themselves, they can innovate faster and moreintelligently.‖[10]H3 - Conversations going on in social media platforms have a great influence onconsumer perception and buying behaviourWith technology is now aiding Word-of-Mouth Marketing, digital conversations, peercomments, tweets, blog posts, and product reviews will have a huge impact on consumerbehaviour. According to Heinze and Hu [11] and the theory of impression management,individuals can form impressions of organizations based on interactions withorganizations‘ websites. While examining customers‘ attitudes toward company Web sites,Heinze and Hu evaluated the importance of competition and said that a company mustmaintain pace with its industry. It should incorporate features and technology thatconsumers deem important. Managers should focus on using the features that have thegreatest effects on customer perceptions [12].Significance of the studyThe significance of the study has various implications for different fields, analytics andmarketing communication strategy employed by organisations. The study aims todetermine the effectiveness for organisations and businesses using social media tools inreaching their target audience and to increase their bottom-line. It will also examine theimportance of online reputation and the need for organisations to develop innovativeapproaches in reaching their target audience. This study will also ultimately conclude ifsocial media helps organisations differentiate themselves in the market place.The significance of the study will have implications in the following areas; 11
  • 12. 1. SpreadThe survey will assess the involvement of social media in the lives of different categories ofthe Nigerian populace. It will also affirm the rapid involvement of brands within themarketplace. The study will also highlight the disposition of people to social mediamarketing messages and the response of the sample population to advertising messages.2. TrafficThis is one of the more obvious ways of measuring social media benefits for brands. Whilesocial media evokes a community for conversations, it has tremendous potential fordriving traffic for businesses with online portals, pages and website. Once businesseshave official pages online, marketing helps drive traffic to their official website for furthercommunication, marketing, they can also serve as platforms to promote sales andpromotional campaigns.3. InteractionThe differentiating factor for social media platforms is the instantaneousness and theopportunity for brands to participate in social media two-way conversations. So manychallenges can be solved through these means. It is also a valuable indicator of publicperception and the impact of the product and marketing policies on the target market.Negative and de-marketing information can be corrected and influenced through thesemeans. An engaged customer is a highly valuable one since interaction will reveal a lotmore similitude of a market research. Interaction can be anything from leaving comments,to participating in support forums, to leaving customer reviews and ratings.4. SalesAs Nigeria gradually shifts toward e-commerce solutions, online payment and non-contact transactions, the study will reveal the perception of the population to onlinetransactions, how the new cashless policy being proposed [13] is affecting them and the 12
  • 13. prospects of whether the target audience can respond to marketing messages ofproducts and services presented on social media platforms.5. Lead GenerationWhile most companies in Nigeria are not fully engaging in online transactions, marketingcommunication can be used to drive Leads/footprints for sales or events promotion. Ifpeer-to-peer interaction on these platforms have a high degree of reliability or perceived tobe respected, social media platforms serve as a potent platform to drive entry of newprojects , advert campaigns with a resultant impact on the number of people eventuallycoming for the products, product sampling and event attendance.6. Search MarketingAs most search engines favour content from social media, the Search Engine Optimisationfactor cannot be understated. Social media can be far more powerful in this regard thancan be easily realised. With Google introducing new changes to its search algorithm toinclude social media and personalised history [14], Blog entries, product reviews andconsumer experiences may outrank original company websites. A well written andoptimised story / video / image on a site like Digg will generate a lot of traffic.7. Brand metrics/AnalyticsOne angle with which the significance of the study will bear on is the measurement ofmarketing efforts or marketing analytics. Unlike traditional media, social media and otherdigital media platforms are concise and precise on measurement. The directmeasurement of digital marketing efforts is available on so many digital platforms andoffer insight into consumers response to social media marketing communicationmessages. 13
  • 14. 8. PRThe nature of public relations and reputation has changed, forever with the advent ofsocial media. With the advent of social networking sites (MySpace, Facebook, Twittere.t.c.) giving people and organisations the power to respond to branding and marketingpropositions and the attendant impact of blogs and other user-generated media. SinceSearch Engines have a powerful control on influencing consumer perception and opinionsabout products and services, what Search Engines tell them has a lot of impact on thebrands.This study will have important implications for the distinct worlds of PR, Customer Service,and Marketing.References:[1]. "What is Social Media Marketing". Search Engine Land, 11 January 2012http://searchengineland.com/guide/what-is-social-media-marketing[2]. "Seven Best Practices for Lead Generation on Social Media Networks"[3] Neilsen: State of the Media: Social Media Report: Q3 2011[4] Mobile Africa Report 2011 (http://www.mobilemonday.net/reports/MobileAfrica_2011.pdf)[5] Social Bakers March update: http://www.socialbakers.com/facebook-statistics/nigeria[6] Inmobi http://www.inmobi.com/press-releases/2011/07/18/african-mobile-advertising-market-grows-with-37-9-over-three-months-according-to-inmobi-mobile-insights-report-may-2011-edition/[7]. Chow, S. and Holden, R. (1997), ―Toward an understanding of Loyalty: themoderating role of trust‖, Journal of Management Issues, Vol. 9, pp. 275-98. 14
  • 15. [8]. Fournier, S. and Yao, J. (1997), ―Reviving brand loyalty: a re-conceptualization withinthe framework of consumer brand relationships‖, International Journal of Research inMarketing, Vol. 14, pp. 451-72.[9] Cone. (2008, September 25). Cone finds that Americans expect companies to have apresence in social media. Boston, MA: Author. Retrieved October 9, 2008, fromhttp://www.coneinc.com/content1182[10] Outing, S. (2007, September). Enabling the social company. Boulder, CO: EnthusiastGroup LLC.[11] Heinze, N. & Hu, Q. (2006). The evolution of corporate web presence: A longitudinalstudy of large American companies. International Journal of Information Management, 26,313-325.[12] Ibid.[13] Further Clarifications on Cash-less Lagos Project: http://www.cbn.gov.ng/cashless/[14] Google SEO: Algorithm Changes - February 2012:http://www.websitemagazine.com/content/blogs/posts/archive/2012/02/27/google-algorithm-changes-february-2012.aspx 15
  • 16. Chapter 2: Review of Related LiteratureSocial media will include all web-based and mobile technologies used to turncommunication into interactive dialogue. Andreas Kaplan and Michael Haenlein definesocial media as "a group of Internet-based applications that build on the ideological andtechnological foundations of Web 2.0 and that allow the creation and exchange of user-generated content."[1] Social media is media for social interaction as a super-set beyondsocial communication. Enabled by ubiquitously accessible and scalable communicationtechniques, social media has substantially changed the way organizations, communities,and individuals communicate [2]. The strength of these platforms is owing to the fact thatit enhances the consumers‘ ability to communicate with one another and subsequentlylimits the amount of control companies have over the content and dissemination ofinformation about their brands [3].Social Media PlatformsSocial Media platforms are online portals driven by technology and enhance the use,streaming and sharing of multimedia content (data, voice, and video). These platformshave become the fast growing virtual communities in the emerging global village. Theeasy accessibility to anyone anywhere across the world with internet access makes it apotential marketplace where brands also come to promote their products and engage thetarget audience. Increased communication on social media platforms for organizationsfosters brand awareness and often, improved customer service. Additionally, social mediaserves as a relatively inexpensive platform for organizations to implement marketingcampaigns. 16
  • 17. Social Media platforms include Blogs, Social Networks, Newsgroups, Photo-sharing, BlogAggregators, Micro-communities and Wikis. Some examples of these include;BlogsPerhaps the best known form of social media, blogs are web applications built as sharedonline journals where people can post daily entries of information: personal experiences,business, hobbies or pleasure. i. WordPress iii. Typepad ii. Blogger/BlogSpot iv. Movable TypeSocial NetworksThese sites allow people to build personal web pages and then connect withfriends to share content and communication. i. Facebook v. Bebo ii. Google Plus vi. LinkedIn iii. MySpace iv. Hi5 17
  • 18. Newsgroups/ ForumsThese are web applications built for online communities and promote discussion. They arebuilt around specific topics, interests or location. Forums came about before the term―social media‖ and are a powerful and popular element of online communities. i. Nairaland iii. Naijapals ii. Naijabestforum iv. WarriorforumBlog Aggregators/ Communities i. Vox vi. Blogged ii. BlogCatalog vii. B5Media iii. MyBlogLog viii. Afrigator iv. NetworkedBlogs v. BloglinesContent communities (multimedia)These are online communities which organise and share particular kinds of content. Mostof them allow for people to upload, download and share different kind of content; music,video and photos.a. Video Sharing i. YouTube iii. Vimeo ii. Ustream iv. Hulu 18
  • 19. b. Music Sharing i. iTunes ii. Napster iii. Notjustokc. Photo Sharing i. FlickrMicro communitiesSocial networking platforms which allow small-sized blogging, where small amounts ofcontent (‗updates‘) are distributed online. People can share and distribute among friends. i. Twitter vi. Jaiku ii. FriendFeed vii. Microblogs iii. Identi.ca viii. Tumblr iv. Plurk ix. Posterous v. YammerMicromedia (Subset of micro communities, driven by multimedia) i. 12 seconds iii. Twitpic ii. Seesmic iv. Twitvid 19
  • 20. v. Twitpic vii. Lifestream.fm vi. SocialThingInstant Messengers i. Black Berry Messenger iv. Skype ii. Whatsapp v. Google Chat iii. Yahoo MessengerThe top three social media platforms include the following;Facebook:Facebook, an online social networking service is the worlds largest and most used onlinecommunity and website (January 2009, Compete.com) was launched in February 2004.The company is operated and privately owned by Facebook, Inc. [4] and was founded byMark Zuckerberg alongside his college roommates and fellow students; Eduardo Saverin,Dustin Moskovitz and Chris Hughes. The Web sites membership was initially limited by thefounders to Harvard students, but was expanded to other colleges in the Boston area, theIvy League, and Stanford University. It gradually added support for students at variousother universities before opening the platform up to high school students, and eventuallyanyone aged 13 and above [5]The Facebook online platform allows users to create personal profiles, own their ownvirtual spaces, invite and add others as friends, exchange messages, receive automatic 20
  • 21. notification of friends activities. These boutiques of technical functionalities wereexpansive enough to attract a wide variety of early adopters which later extended intofriends, acquaintances and associates regardless of race, colour and gender. This onlinecommunity has resulted in creating the largest online community with more than 800million active users making it; if it were a country, the third largest in the world [6].Social Media Marketing Communications is a major channel through which Facebookmakes its money [7]. This source of revenue for Facebook evolved when businesses andbrands found a place within this online communities; creating pages, pushing messages,pictures and videos to pre-defined target audience. It also allowed individuals to offer theirproducts and services to the online community through social media advertisingcampaigns to sell their offerings through display, word and banner advertising.Microsoft which owns 1.3 % of Facebook ownership structure [8] is responsible for servingbanner advertising, [9], [10]. It is reported that Facebook makes over $9 million per dayfrom advertising [11].YouTube:YouTube is a video-sharing website, founded by three former employees of PayPal (ChadHurley, Steve Chen, and Jawed Karim) in February 2005[12]. It is built on a technologythat allows users (individuals and organisations) to view, display and share a wide varietyof user-generated video content, including movie clips, TV clips, and music videos, as wellas amateur content such as video blogging and short original videos which users canupload, view and share videos [13].As a result of this explosive growth, media corporations now use the platform in sharingcontent through a partnership programme; CBS, the BBC, VEVO, Hulu including NigeriasChannels TV. The site grew rapidly, and in July 2006 the company announced that more 21
  • 22. than 65,000 new videos were being uploaded every day, and that the site was receiving100 million video views per day [14]. Google Inc. bought YouTube for US$1.65 billion thesame year and started operations as a subsidiary of Google in November 2006 [15].Social Media marketing through YouTube can either make use of the user-generatedvideos or through YouTubes Advertising platform. This advertising platform is managed byGoogle through its AdSense. An example of user generated videos was used for buildingawareness for DBanjs Oliver Twist album. [16]LinkedIn:This is a business-related social networking site. Founded in December 2002 andlaunched in May 2003 [17]. It is mainly used for professional networking and extendinginto a recruitment platform. With LinkedIn reporting more than 135 million registered usersin more than 200 countries and territories. [18, 19]. The site is available in English, French,German, Italian, Portuguese, Spanish, Romanian, Russian, Turkish and Japanese and hasover 21.4 million monthly unique U.S. visitors and 47.6 million globally [20]. Users use it toconnect with friends and professional colleagues, to find jobs, business opportunities,employers now use it to find prospective employers and prospective employees canestablish their profiles, Curriculum Vitae, experience and competence on the website. Webapplications are increasingly being used to develop platforms that use LinkedIn forrecruitment and selection for employment by organisations and are gaining wide adoption[21].The impacts of communication on these platforms have huge impact on brands andconsumer perception. In Gillins Book, The New Influencers, he opined that ‗‗Conventionalmarketing wisdom has long held that a dis-satisfied customer tells ten people. But that isout of date. In the new age of social media, he or she has the tools to tell 10 million‘‘ (p. 4)consumers virtually overnight [22]. Social media is increasingly playing an important role in 22
  • 23. how consumers search, research, and share information about brands and products. Infact 60 percent of consumers researching products through multiple online sourceslearned about a specific brand or retailer through social networking sites. Active socialmedia users are more likely to read product reviews online, and 3 out of 5 create their ownreviews of products and services. Women are more likely than men to tell others aboutproducts that they like (81% of females vs. 72% of males) [23]. Overall, consumer-generated reviews and product ratings are the most preferred sources of productinformation among social media users [24]. According to a research conducted byNielsen, a global research firm, it gave empirical evidence that social media is increasinglya platform consumers use to express their loyalty to their favourite brands and products,and many seek to reap benefits from brands for helping promote their products. Amongthose who share their brand experiences through social media, at least 41 percent saythey do so to receive discounts [25].It is not whether businesses and organisations will evolve to meet these challenges, it ishow. This is because the primary customers of their businesses, the customers arealready evolving in their habits and attitudes and it will affect businesses. In the UnitedStates, most people rely on various types of social media websites as much as companywebsites for product and brand information. Seven out of ten (70%) consumers havevisited social media websites such as message boards, social networking sites, and blogsto get information. Further, nearly half (49%) of these consumers made a purchasedecision based on what they gathered [26].References:[1] Kaplan, Andreas M.; Michael Haenlein (2010). "Users of the world, unite! Thechallenges and opportunities of Social Media". Business Horizons 53 (1): 59–68. 23
  • 24. [2] Kietzmann, Jan H.; Kris Hermkens, Ian P. McCarthy, and Bruno S. Silvestre (2011)."Social media? Get serious! Understanding the functional building blocks of social media".Business Horizons P.54[3] Christopher Vollmer and Geoffrey Precourt (2008). Always on: Advertising, marketing,and media in an era of consumer control. New York: McGraw-Hill[4] Eldon, Eric, "2008 Growth Puts Facebook in Better Position to Make Money" -December 18, 2008)[5] www.wikipedia.com[6] Socialnomics Report http://www.socialnomics.net/category/statistics/.[7] "Facebooks Ad Revenue Hit $1.86B for 2010"January 17, 2011 by Jolie ODell[8] Kirkpatrick, David (2010). The Facebook effect: the inside story of the company that isconnecting the world. New York: Simon & Schuster[9] http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Web_banner[10] "Product Overview FAQ: Facebook Ads". March 10, 2008[11] http://www.thesocialmediatoday.com/how-much-revenue-does-facebook-make-per-day/[12] http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/YouTube#cite_note-usatoday-5[13] (Hopkins, Jim (October 11, 2006). "Surprise! Theres a third YouTube co-founder".USA Today. Retrieved November 29, 2008)[14] http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/YouTube#cite_note-13[15] http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/YouTube 24
  • 25. [16] http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/LinkedIn#cite_note-3[17] http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/LinkedIn#cite_note-4[18] http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/LinkedIn#cite_note-5[19] http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Quantcast[20] www.quantcast.com/linkedin.com. December 17, 2010.[21] http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Linked_in[22] Gillin, P. (2007). The new influencers: A marketer‘s guide to the new social media.Sanger, CA: Quill Driver Books[23] Ibid.[24] How Social Media Impacts Brand Marketing October 14, 2011, Nielsenwirehttp://blog.nielsen.com/nielsenwire/consumer/how-social-media-impacts-brand-marketing/[25] Ibid.[26] The Impact of Social Media on Purchasing Behaviour, United States 2008 VolumeOne: Initial Findings, United States 2008 25
  • 26. Chapter 3: Research MethodologyA quantitative and qualitative research is designed to determine Nigerian consumersperception towards organizations that use social media. Through this study a safeconclusion can be arrived at on the involvement of brands on social media. This researchwill also help organizations determine the potency of their social media campaigns and toanticipate the response of their target audience.Sample SelectionThe research will be conducted using an online survey. The survey will be designed usingan online survey platform, Google Docs. Promotion and Publicity for the survey will bethrough online influencers and other social media platforms. Everyone receiving theinformation will be asked to fill the survey and also broadcast the message. i.e. take thesurvey, pass it along and ask others to complete it.This will result in a non-random, convenient, self-selected sample population.Data Collection MethodThe survey instrument itself will include 20 close-ended questions. The instrument willprobe consumers‘ awareness, behaviour, opinions and perception toward social mediaplatforms and how they want organizations to interact with them.The survey is available for review via http://www.yrn.me/4nw orhttps://docs.google.com/spreadsheet/viewform?formkey=dFZLRUdPRUpBa3RkRHk2a1U 26
  • 27. 1XzM4WHc6MQ&theme=0AX42CRMsmRFbUy1mYWM4NjFhMS1kMGY2LTRjODMtOGNjNi02YjVjYmI0NGNiMDQ&ifq.A copy of the survey instrument can be found in Appendix A.Data Analysis MethodThe filled online form, which is automatically collated in a tabular form. This is thenanalysed using www.docs.google.com. The analysis will help us determine frequenciesand percentages of the responses. The analysis will reveal and help evaluate the Nigerianconsumer attitudes and behaviours towards brands that use or participate in digitalconversation. This research will also determine if consumers want organizations to usesocial media to communicate with them and how they perceive organisations alreadyusing the platforms.The results from this four-part research, alongside conclusions and recommendations arefound in the next chapter.References[1] Google Docs https://docs.google.com 27
  • 28. Chapter 4: Data Presentation and AnalysisA total of 164 respondents were collated between February 12 and March 4 2012. Theresults of the survey was collated and re-presented in Pie and Bar charts using the sameonline platform.Each hypothesis was tested and the findings were as follows;H1 – It is expected that people find social media advertising as a very useful channelin getting information about products and services.In the survey completed by Nigerian Consumers, 47% of the respondents say they haveresonded to online advertsements displayed by organisations or individuals aboutproducts and services. Figure 1: Pie Chart showing if respondents respond to online advertisement (%)H1 – Supported 28
  • 29. H2 – It is opined that social media is a veritable tool to nurture brand loyaltyDuring the survey, 57% of the respondents say they are registered fans or followers insupport of causes, brands, people or businesses on Facebook. Figure 2: Pie Chart showing respondents responses to their membership of Brands social pages (%)In another question proposed in the survey, 41% of the respondents say they are fansbecause they want to show Solidarity or loyalty to the brands they like ; 27% of therespondents say they are opt-in fans on Social Media to see if the businesses will offersome kind of post-purchase or customer service support for their products or services Figure 3: Bar Chart showing respondents responses to their motives for enlisting on Social Media pages (%) 29
  • 30. while 16% of the respondents say they are hoping to get some kind of freebies/discount;another 19% say they follow/like brands to stay up-to-date with information and newscoming directly from the company.41% of the respondents say they like/follow brands on social media to show solidarity.H2 - SupportedH3 - Conversations going on in social media platforms have a great influence onconsumer perception and buying behaviourOf the Nigerian Social Media consumers surveyed, 82% of the respondents say they haveposted, commented and broadcast their experiences about a brand on Social Mediaplatforms. Figure 4: Bar Chart showing their propensity to share brand experiences (%) 30
  • 31. Figure 5: Bar Chart showing respondents motive for sharing brand experiences (%)In another question exploring why respondents share brand experiences on social media,31% of the responents say they do that to protect others from having the sameexperiences. Another 31% of the responents also said they share brand/productexperiences to bond with others having the same experiences. About 15% however hopethat the company responds/reacts to their feedback. These experience sharing howeverhas effects on the purchasing behaviour of their peers.In another question proposed to test this hypothesis, more than 70% of the respondentssaid the opinions, experiences tweets and comments of others on social media issomewhat significant, significant and very significant to their purchasing decisions. 31
  • 32. Figure 6: Bar Chart showing the significance of others experiences on their buying decision (%)69% of the respondents also say they trust the recommendation of others through theircomments on forums, status updates and tweets ahead of company websites. Figure 7: Bar Chart showing which information platforms influence their buying decision on brands (%) 32
  • 33. This also agrees with the results of Nielsen‘s Global Online Survey which established thatwhen researching products, social media users are likely to trust the recommendations oftheir friends and family most [1]. It also opined that consumer feedback on social mediahas a significant role to play in influencing the perception of brands. While 48% of therespondents say they will eagerly commend a good job on social media, 31% say they willbroadcast poor product experiences in order to bond with others with the same issues.31% also say they write reviews, make public digital complaints so as to protect othersfrom experiencing the same. The Nielsen Report also concluded that nearly 1 in 4 say theyshare their negative experiences to ―punish companies [2].In another report, it was demonstrated that consumers trust their friends and peers morethan anyone else when it comes to making a purchase decision[3]. This type of peerrecommendation is passed along as earned media (advertising that is passed along orshared among/to friends and beyond)H3 - SupportedOther general findings from the research include the following;A. Gender Distribution:62% of the respondents were Male and 38% are Female. There were more males thanfemales among the respondents. 33
  • 34. Figure 8: Pie Chart showing gender ratio of the respondents (%)This outcome agrees with a report from Social Bakers (Pie Chart above) which alsoconducted an analysis of all Nigerians on Facebook and opines that there are more males(68%) than females (32%) on Facebook, which is Nigerias most widely used Socialnetwork [4]. Figure 9: Doughnut Chart showing the gender of the respondents (%) from Social Bakers Analytics 34
  • 35. B: Age DistributionThe survey revealed that the 30 - 39 age bracket accounts for about 40% of therespondents. This also agrees with the report from Social Bakers which puts the mostactive users of Facebook between the ages of 18 and 24(36%); and between 25 and34(35%) [5]. Figure 10: Bar Chart showing the age range of the respondents (%)C : Income DistributionThe survey also revealed that about 24% of the respondents earn between 2,000,001 and5,000,000 million naira annually. Respondents with income less than 250,000 per annumrepresents 22% of the sample size. 35
  • 36. Figure 11: Bar Chart showing the age range of the respondents (%) from Social Bakers AnalyticsFigure 12: Bar Chart showing income range of the respondents (%) 36
  • 37. D: Popular Social Media Platforms99% of the respondents say they have a profile on Facebook. Out of all the different socialmedia platforms existing, almost all the respondents use Facebook. Thisaffirms thepopularity of the platform in Nigeria. Social Bakers Analytics puts the number of Nigerianson Facebook at 4.3 million [6]. Figure 13: Bar Chart showing social presence of the respondents (%)E: Time Spent Online Figure 14: Pie Chart showing daily hours spent online by respondents (%) 37
  • 38. Figure 15: Pie Chart showing daily hours spent on social media platforms by respondents (%)56% of the respondents say they use Social Media to find and share information aboutbrands and products.  To keep in touch with friends and family.   88%  To meet new people and share my experiences about life.   49%  To make professional and business contacts (gaining leads,members,customers)   48%  To share photos, videos, music and play games.   34% 38
  • 39.  To find information and share feedback about brands and products.   56%  To promote a business or cause   43%  To search for jobs and other available opportunities   48% Figure 16: Pie Chart showing why respondents joined social networks (%)F: Device Accessibility78% of the respondents say they access social networking platforms through their mobilephones Figure 17: Pie Chart showing why respondents joined social networks (%)This agrees with the Inmobi report which established that Nigeria shows the fastest mobilegrowth in mobile markets in Africa from February to May 2011 representing 2 of every 5mobile ads across the continent [7].G: Interaction with Online adverts73% of the respondents say they have at one time responded to online adverts. 39
  • 40. Figure 18: Pie Chart showing if the respondents have ever responded to online advertisements (%)These kinds of responses may include following a link, clicking a like button, making apurchase, phone call, taking part in a competition, attending an event e.t.c.Over 90% of the respondents say they have found these online adverts somewhat useful(45%), very useful (46%) and love adverts (2%) on social media platforms. Figure 19: Pie Chart showing how respondents feel about online advertising (%) 40
  • 41. References:1. Nielsen report: http://blog.nielsen.com/nielsenwire/consumer/how-social-media-impacts-brand-marketing/)2. Ibid.3. http://blog.nielsen.com/nielsenwire/online_mobile/consumer/global-advertising-consumers-trust-real-friends-and-virtual-strangers-the-most/4. Nigeria Facebook Statistics: http://www.socialbakers.com/facebook-statistics/nigeria5. Ibid.6. http://www.socialbakers.com/facebook-statistics/nigeria7. Inmobi http://www.inmobi.com/press-releases/2011/07/18/african-mobile-advertising-market-grows-with-37-9-over-three-months-according-to-inmobi-mobile-insights-report-may-2011-edition/ 41
  • 42. Chapter 5: Conclusion and RecommendationSocial Media has created a powerful platform for consumer engagement. It has become aplatform to turn a prospective consumer into a volunteer marketing army. It is alsohowever a nightmare for cognitive dissonace, an unsatisfied customer can do more harmto a brand in seconds than it was ever possible before. This report tells us how much morepower the consumers have in influencing a brand/prduct perception. Businesses will needto stay at the top of their game and improve the quality of products and services or theirconsumers will fight back.The social media space also presents a basket of customer opinions, perceptions andcustomer feedback. Businesses can reap a lot of user opinions or preliminary research forproducts/services in order to find suggestions, core values and propositions that cansatisfy the cutomers needs. Some businesses are still hesitating and some others are notsure how to aproach the ever dnamic worls of social media. If your business isnt creatingdedicated online experiences for mobile devices and social network integration, you mightbe looking over a tremendous opportunity to connect with consumers.As Brian Solis, a foremost Social Media enthusiast opined in his book, The End ofBusiness as Usual, Social media democratized information and empowered consumersto take control of not only their online experiences but also those in the real world. As aresult, social media is changing how customers shop, refer products and services, andultimately make decisions. The relationship between customers and business is changingand will continue to evolve as new media permeates our culture and society [1].Social Media as a form of marketing will present a whole new phase challenges. It willrequire businesses to develop their marketing strategy genuine relationship building.Some businesses have jumped into the uncharted world and they are raisingambassadors and advocates for brands through social media. They are increasingly 42
  • 43. recruiting their fans and followers to spread word-of-mouth recommendations about theirproducts and services, and they are tapping into the large youth market.It wil be great to see how things pan out. The marriage between social media andtechnology is fundamentally shifting the way business is done and businesses that plan tostay for a long time need to move - very fast and strategically too.Twenty years ago, it was the age of mass media; one-way massive broadcast, massivebudgets, and not so massive ROI analysis. If you happen to be dissatisfied with acompanys product or business practices, youd probably stop buying from them. Youmight write an angry letter. You might even tell your friends and family not to patronize thatbusiness. But that was then; the game has changed, media is becoming more personaland the ROI is noew a common requisition in advertising budgets. If you are angry with acompany, product or personality, the tools are there an the world is waiting to listen. Theonly limit is our creativiy and how far we want to go.Refrences:[1] The End of Business as Usual, Brian Solis 43
  • 44. Appendix A:Online Customer Service Survey:This is a simple social customer survey. It involves simple and straight forward questionsto highlight your habits, preferences and response to the emergence of business brandson Social Media platforms. Your honest and frank response is craved. It is designed not towaste your time.Social Media Channels include: Social Media Networks, Blogs, Forums, Microbloggers,Instant Messengers, Multimedia (Voice, Data, Music and Video) Sharing Online Platforms,Newsgroups and Aggregators.Questionnaire:A: Personal Data: 1. Please specify your gender a. Male b. Female 2. Please specify your age bracket a. Under 18 years b. 18 - 25 c. 26 - 29 d. 30 - 39 e. 40 - 49 f. 50 + above 44
  • 45. 3. Please specify your marital status a. Single b. Married c. Divorced 4. Please specify your income bracket a. Less than NGN 250,000 annually b. NGN 250,001 to NGN500, 000 annually c. NGN 500,001 to NGN 1,000,000 annually d. NGN 1,000,001 to NGN 2,000,000 annually e. NGN 2,000,001 to NGN 5,000,000 annually f. More than NGN 5,000,000 annuallyB: Awareness 5. Please select all social networks for which you have created a personal profile (Select all that apply) a. Facebook b. Twitter c. LinkedIn d. MySpace e. Any online forum f. Other 45
  • 46. 6. How many hours do you spend online each day? a. 0-3 hours b. 4 - 9 hours c. 10 - 15 hours d. 16 - 24 hours7. How many hours do you spend on social networks per day? a. 0-3 hours b. 4 - 9 hours c. 10 - 15 hours d. 16 - 24 hours8. Why do you use an online social network? Select all answers that apply. Please select all that apply. a. To keep in touch with friends and family. b. To meet new people and share experiences about life c. To make professional and business contacts (gaining leads, members, customers) d. To share photos, videos, music and play games. e. To find information and share feedback about brands and products. f. To promote a business or cause g. To search for jobs and other available opportunities 46
  • 47. 9. How many friends do you have on your primary social network a. 1 - 500 b. 501 - 1000 c. 1001 - 2500 d. 2501 - 500010. How do you access Social Media Platforms? a. Desktop Computer b. Laptop Computer c. Tablets (iPad, Galaxy Tab and others) d. Mobile Phones e. I use a cafe f. Other Perception11. Have you ever responded to an online advertisement? a. Yes b. No12. How do you feel about advertising on social networks? a. Very annoying 47
  • 48. b. Somewhat annoying c. Somewhat annoying d. Somewhat useful e. Very useful f. Interesting13. Have you ever purchased a product or service based on an advertisement on a social network? c. Yes d. No14. Do you use social media in an official business or professional capacity? a. Yes b. No15. Are you a member of a fan page for a brand or product on Facebook? a. Yes b. No16. Why do like brands on Facebook? a. To show solidarity b. To try and see it they can solve a challenge you have (Customer service) 48
  • 49. c. To be updates on latest news d. Discounts/freebies e. I dont know f. To open communication lines17. Where do you go to as a preferred source for information about products/services you want to buy? a. Companys website b. Newspapers c. Send a mail to the Company d. Blogs and Forums e. Other Social Networks ( Facebook, Twitter) f. I consult Google first18. Which has more influence on your perception of people, products and places online? a. Online Adverts b. Company/Brand Social Pages c. Company Websites d. Recommendation of others (forums, status updates, tweets) e. They all dont matter 49
  • 50. 19. Do you share your experiences and perception of people/brands/products/services online? a. No b. Yes20. Why do you share your brand experiences on Social Media a. To feel empowered b. To protect others c. To commend a good job d. To bond with others with the same experiences e. Expect the company to react/respond f. To punish the company 50

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