India Social Media Survey - Edition 1 by and


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Across the globe, the blog and social media (SM) environment is evolving rapidly and India is no exception to this.

The survey attempts to capture insights and learnings from Corporates and Marketers of India to get a sense of what’s really happening on the ground.

Results and analysis will help understand how our peers, from across India, view social media (SM) impact on marketing & communication.

This will allow the industry to benefit from shared insights and make for educated decisions.

Published in: Business, Technology

India Social Media Survey - Edition 1 by and

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  2.  Across the globe, the blog and social media environment is evolving rapidly, India is no exception  The survey attempts to capture insights and learnings from Corporates and Marketers of India to get a sense of what‟s really happening on the ground  Results and analysis will help understand how our peers, from across India, view social media impact on marketing and communication  This will allow the industry to benefit from shared insights and make for educated decisions 2
  3.       The survey was jointly conducted by, amongst the most respected special interest publishing group in India and Blogworks – strategic social media solutions ( in December 2008 and January 2009 A detailed questionnaire, consisting of high impact questions, was hosted online to collect responses from the desired audience – working professionals, executives, business leaders from India E-mailers, advertising and word-of-mouth around the survey resulted in a total of 590 started surveys; a response count of 363; and 267 completed surveys Survey forms filled in by participants who chose to remain anonymous (or filled gibberish), or those who did not meet the audience criteria were removed from the results tally Statistical analysis of each question only takes into account valid responses to that specific question and not the total number of entries, thus allowing for a more precise evaluation Trends are captured graphically; comments from participants are highlighted with names where participants gave us explicit permission to quote them; and without giving away identities of participants, and organisations they represent, where participants did not wish to be quoted. We have also tried to draw trends, establish linkages: these are highlighted 3
  4. “We get to know our viewers' preferences when it comes to television viewing. Mentions of the channel and shows in a viewer's blog gives us a sense of likeability and willingness to spread a positive word on the same within their circle. These blogs and discussions on social networking sites have helped us pick the right content for our English entertainment channel as well.” -- Manager - Strategy & Business Development, Entertainment Channel “Companies like CISCO, HCL etc are using Blogs to make an impact with their stakeholders. The impact may be subtle and not measurable but it is still important and will evolve into a conspicuous entity.” -- Gurpreet Wasi, COO, Retail Solutions Company “We created our community on Social Networks like FaceBook and Orkut and we have seen significant increase (almost 40 per cent) in the number of referrals from existing players. -- Sachin Uppal, Marketing Director, Online Gaming site 4
  5. © and  Only 4 per cent respondents stated that Social Media „enjoys very little credibility‟  Like in any other medium, it‟s not the tool but the voice/s associated with it that matter  As more and more experts adopt Social Media, credibility is expected to go up further 5
  6. © and  An overwhelming 90 per cent of respondents believe that blogs and Social Media platforms presently have an impact on business and marketing 6
  7. © and  Interestingly, a clear majority of respondents (58 per cent) believe that Social Media will have a „huge impact‟ on business and marketing, over the next year or two – a steep 37 per cent jump from 21 per cent, who think it has a huge impact at present (see previous slide) 7
  8. © and   Clearly, organisations are now realising the reach and scope of Social Media and are prepared to use Social Media platforms like blogs, social networks, wikis, RSS, etc. Even as neo influencers like bloggers are targeted, traditional influencers – media, analysts remain key target for outreach 8
  9.    For nearly 90 per cent respondents, buzz and word of mouth are top deliverables from Social Media activities However, encouraging statistics shows organisations and brands are clearly moving towards a conversational path:  Over 65 per cent respondents think Social Media can deliver insights  Over 61 per cent think Social Media can build engagements  Over 46 hope to create better products and services Social Media is not a sales tool seems to have been understood by most organisations. However, a lack of understanding of this basic Social Media rule could otherwise prove costly. © and 9
  10. © and   An overwhelming 85 per cent respondents agree that Social Media does have an impact on purchase decisions High involvement categories such as Automobiles, Gadgets, Mobiles, Healthcare, Travel, Finance amongst others will likely see higher impact than low involvement categories 10
  11. © and © and 11
  12. “Jet Airways used Social Media to promote their student offers very effectively by targeting the right social media networks” “Apple lost a fortune when bloggers spread the rumour about the launch of iPhone being postponed and also the rumour about Steve jobs getting a heart-attack” “Dell's battery issue was first reported in a blog which ultimately flared up into a crisis for the company...” 12
  13. A majority of respondents have engaged in some kind of Social Media activity © and © and Among the respondents who haven‟t adopted Social Media activities so far, 64 per cent are seriously considering participating in Social Media activity 13
  14. © and 14
  15.  Clearly, presence on social networking sites, YouTube, Flickr and company blogs are the most commonly used tools  Majority of brand /organisation websites are still based on traditional web platforms as sites of only 26 per cent respondents have interactive Web 2.0 functionalities  The percentage of each response is well-distributed; shows that markets are open to use / try new applications and platforms 15
  16. © and  81-85 per cent of respondents believe that Indian marketers and corporates have just cursory or no understanding of Social Media; the need for education and learning continues to be high 16
  17. © and  Interestingly, of the respondents who have engaged in Social Media for their brands / organisations, only 15 per cent have outsourced this function 17
  18. © and    Digital ad agencies and PR agencies appear to be the favourites when outsourcing Social Media activities It is interesting to note the emergence of a new specialist category called „Social Media Agencies‟ has emerged Could it be that strategy and operations will be divided amongst specialist and general agencies? 18
  19. © and   47 per cent respondents believe that agencies have only a cursory or no understanding of Social Media Only 25 per cent agencies have a good understanding of the Social Media space: the need for learning and education continues 19
  20. © and   Impact on sales didn‟t make it to the top 5 matrix to evaluate success of a social media programme And yes, that‟s a good thing given the Social Media focus on insights, engagement, and co-creation 20
  21. © and  54 per cent respondents believe that with the global slowdown in the economy, Social Media spends will increase 21
  22. © and  Budgets allocated for Social Media spends will see a steady rise across the next two years  Only 25 per cent of respondents are currently spending over 10 per cent of their marketing budget on Social Media. However, 43 per cent of respondents feel that they would be spending 10 per cent or more of their marketing budgets in the next two years 22
  23. Social Media strategy cannot exist in isolation; it has to be a part of the brand / organisational objectives © and  86 per cent of respondents associate value with a long-term strategy when it comes to their Social Media engagement  And a majority 53 per cent believe that this would be a very important need for an impactful Social Media activity 23
  24. © and    There is a need for Social Media programmes to be distributed across teams/representatives A combination of a special team drawn from across departments, working in sync with a centralized team This outlook further substantiates the need to adopt Social Media for marketing at a strategic level as well 24
  25.  Sectors using blogs and social media platforms in the best way possible – – – – – IT Telecom Airlines Bollywood Movies and Actors Job Portals  Brands with the highest recall with respect to social media – – – – – – – Sunsilk: Gang-of-Girls Tata Tea: Jaago Re MTV Roadies Fastrack Pepsi (Youngistan campaign) Blogs of Microsoft, IBM, HP and Nokia Blogs of Amitabh Bachchan and Aamir Khan 25
  26. Top trends, as seen by respondents 26
  27. Taking Web2.0 to the next level:  Widgets, wikis, micro-blogging, auto-tagging, networking on the Mobile, SMS-based marketing  Sharper focus, enhanced multiple webs of communication, on-the-go 27
  28. Engagement and Insights  Increasing consumer awareness, more informed decision making  Hence, the obvious route to take is content co-creation with stakeholders and enhanced brand-awareness through sharp, focused reach 28
  29. An increasing habit of self-expression  This would develop more through interest-based groups, valuable niches and communities 29
  30. Blog 2.0  From irreverent casual writing to credible, action/knowledge oriented writing  Blogs becoming not just a medium for one‟s coolness quotient but also awareness quotient 30
  31. Higher spends on Social Media programs  Celeb involvement and inter-mixing of traditional and new media makes for Social Media now getting a greater reach  Goes hand in hand with rise in internet penetration 31
  32. Social Media Experts  Importance of strategy for brands which adopt social-media cannot be overstressed  The medium is constantly moving from being speculative to effective and measurable  Hence, the birth of “Experts”, as knowledge to optimize the tools is required 32
  33. Exchange4media was set up eight years back with the aim of publishing niche, relevant, and quality publications for the marketing, advertising and media professionals. Today, exchange4media is a single-stop information platform for the entire industry. Be it news, views, analytical information, in-depth analysis of events or trend forecasting, exchange4media publications have credibility and a loyal following. The publication house is physically present in five locations: Delhi, Mumbai, Kolkata, Bangalore, and Chennai. Presently, there are five titles in its portfolio: namely PITCH, Impact, Franchise Plus, Realty Plus and Blogworks delivers strategic social media solutions and know-how to brands, corporates, media houses and not-for-profit organisations to enable transparent and ethical conversations between them and their stakeholders. We are amongst the select few who have a strategic approach for handling „conversational communication and marketing‟ along with mainstream marketing, branding and public relations. More about us at 33
  34. While we have made all efforts to keep the report error free, we cannot guarantee the same. Please do point out any errors that you may notice and we will incorporate your insights for future editions. In your assessments and usage, do account for the fact that the nature of this study is qualitative and not quantitative. The publishers take no responsibility for any results which you may, or may not, achieve based on application of the survey results. We urge you to you use your discretion in deciding its correctness / efficacy and make your own judgments. Sample cases and methodology are shared earlier in the report document. 34
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