New research published by inTV shows that 90% of consumer conversations about products or services feature at least one brand, demonstrating the power of consumers as brand ‘Transmitters’, increasing the value advertisers achieve from their campaigns exponentially through earned media.
Banking/Finance is the most talked about product sector amongst consumers, with 68% of respondents chatting to others on this topic on a monthly basis, and 11% on a daily basis. However, the brands they love to talk about most are in the Smartphones/Tablets sector, with Apple accounting for 70% of brand conversations in this category, followed by Samsung at 53%.
Top three most talked about brands by category – Q. Thinking about that category, which brands have you had a conversation about in the last 4 weeks? inTV, a cooperative group of independent TV channels comprising BBC World News, France 24, ESPN Classic, euronews, EuroSport, National Geographic, Sky News, CNBC and TV5 Monde, used research agency InSites Consulting to carry out a unique study into the power of Word of Mouth across major European markets.
As already noted, the most regularly talked about sector is Banking/Finance which was talked about on a monthly basis by 68% of respondents, with 80% of these conversations including mention of at least one brand. However, the big issue for the Banking/Finance sector is Tone of Voice as, with 30% of branded conversations being negative compared to only 24% being positive, the balance of buzz is currently tipped in the wrong direction.
For brands wishing to harness the power of WOM, the key is to identify and target ‘Champions’ – those people with influence who talk to a lot of people, provide them with lots of information and who have the ability to convince others. 17% of consumers are a Champion in at least one of the six product categories studied, and their influence is far reaching, having a major impact on the purchase funnel.
Belinda Barker, Chairperson at inTV, comments, “Social media is undoubtedly an important channel for creating brand buzz, but our research shows that these conversations only equate to a small proportion of brand conversations, with nine out of ten happening face to face or on the phone.
For us at inTV, this validates our view that advertising should be the start of a conversation – a positive conversation about brands and products that creates positive advocacy, drives purchase intention and increases lifetime value. “What was particularly gratifying to see was that, in every category, inTV viewers were significantly more likely to be Champions than non-inTV viewers. This shows that advertising on inTV channels will improve Return on Investment by creating a much higher level of earned media than other TV channels.”