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The Influenced: Social Media, Search and the Interplay of Consideration and Consumption

The Influenced: Social Media, Search and the Interplay of Consideration and Consumption



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Published by GroupM_Next
An exploration of a custom research study from comScore, GroupM Search & M80
An exploration of a custom research study from comScore, GroupM Search & M80

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Categories:Types, Research
Published by: GroupM_Next on Oct 06, 2009
Copyright:Attribution Non-commercial


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The Inuenced
Social Media, Search and theInterplay of Consideration andConsumption
October, 2009
 An exploration of a custom research study from comScore, GroupM Search &
M80: The Inuenced: Social Media, Search and the Interplay of Considerationand Consumption, October 2009.
Authored by Chris Copeland, CEO, GroupM Search - The AmericasPublished by GroupM Search
Search andSocial Media
October 2009
The Interplay Of Search And Social Media
Background and Opportunity: Synergy Between Social and Search
The reallocation of media budgets from ofine media to online media has accelerated,
as has consumer and brand use of social media. Search marketing, the fastest-growing,and most measurable channel in digital media, captures consumers’ expression of intent. Similarly, social media is an open canvas of consumer expression in forums andplatforms consumers relate to and in which they naturally spend time. As advertisers
seek innovative ways to drive consumer engagement with greater efciency, the integra
-tion of social media and search marketing offers a compelling opportunity for advertis-ers to actively participate in social media and make their brand a natural part of online
conversation. Advertisers can then capture this audience efciently with paid search,
and drive a better return on investment (ROI).
The study sought to explore:
• When consumers are ex
-posed to social media and
inuenced social media, are
they more likely to search,and, when they do, morelikely to engage?
• Does social media exposureinuence search behavior 
by driving search queriesfurther down the purchasefunnel where consumers aremore likely to convert?
• Is there a synergy betweeninuenced social media and
search marketing that drivesbetter performance thansearch only?
The Research
The research explored the impact of social media on search behavior over a three-month period across different verticals, including automotive, consumer packaged goodsand telecommunications.Search behavior was broken into segments based on where queries fell among stagesof the purchase funnel. This included upper-funnel terms expressing awareness andconsideration (industry relevant terms, general product attributes) to lower-funnel termsexpressing action and loyalty (campaign brand terms, brand product terms).
A w a r e n e s sConsiderationPreference
Search andSocial Media
October 2009
The Results: SocialMedia Inuences SearchBehavior & Performance
The study showed searchers whoengage with social media, espe-cially those exposed to a brand’s
inuenced social media, are far 
more likely to search for lower-fun-nel terms compared to consumerswho do not engage with social me-dia. Further, consumers exposed
to a brand’s inuenced social me
-dia and paid search programs are2.8 times more likely to search for that brand’s products compared tousers who saw only paid search.The study also showed a 50percent click-through-rate (CTR)increase in paid search when
consumers were exposed to inu
-enced social media and paid search. This revealed consumers exposed to social mediaare more likely to click on a brand’s paid search ad as compared to those exposed tothe brand’s paid search alone. Among searchers using a brand’s product name in thequery, the CTR increased from 4.5 percent to 11.8 percent when users were exposed to
both inuenced social media and paid search around a brand.
The amount of time spent online varied dramatically among the consumer segments. Of 
consumers participating in social media, those exposed to a brand’s inuenced social
media spent 20 percent more time online compared to those exposed only to socialmedia relevant to a brand’s catego-ry. Consumers exposed to both a
brand’s inuenced social media and
paid search spent almost 3 timesmore time online than the averageconsumer.
One of the key ndings the study
revealed is that social media expo-sure is correlated with lower-funnelsearch behavior.Consumers exposed to social
media – both relevant to a brand and inuenced social – were far more likely to search
for brand and product-related terms. Among lower-funnel searches for campaign brandterms, there was a 19-point lift in searcher penetration (the measurement of consumerswho might use a search engine) by consumers exposed to relevant social media and
In addition to total internet users, consumerswere divided into three segments:
Consumers exposed only to a brand’spaid search
Consumers exposed to social mediarelevant to a brand’s category
• A blog, message board/forum, user re
social networking site, Twitter/micro-blog
-ging, or video-sharing site. Also includes abrand’s social marketing program’s “target”sites, or sites which have the most naturalpotential to hold content about a brand.
 Inuenced Social:
consumers exposed
to inuenced social media specic to a brandIdentied sites containing distributed social
marketing content of a brand’s social mediaprogram

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