Social media overtakes traditional marketing metrics in APAC

  • Customer relationships now a priority focus
  • 50% of marketers using social media advertising to drive e-commerce
Social media overtakes traditional marketing metrics in APAC

BRANDS in Asia Pacific are placing social media at the heart of their strategy as they strive towards 360-degree customer engagement, according to a study released by TNS.
The results from the annual Marketing Monitor study across Asia Pacific highlight the centrality of social media for marketers – it ranked as the top element guiding the planning process, as well as the top metric used to measure the performance of campaigns, TNS said in a statement.
According to the study, businesses are using a variety of sources to inform their marketing strategy. However, insights gathered through social media monitoring have finally overtaken more traditional metrics such as market share data and brand tracking to become the most popular component used by marketers.

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The top five metrics informing planning are: 1) Social media monitoring; 2) Market share data; 3) What the competition is doing; 4) Focus groups; and 5) Opinions of senior management.
These findings echo the changes happening in consumer behaviour across the country, TNS said.
As people become more connected via digital channels, brands are focusing on how they can communicate with their customers in the online spaces where they are already spending time – social.
“It’s no secret that social has become an intrinsic part of our daily lives – 99% of connected consumers in Malaysia [for example] use social networks, switching between Facebook, Instagram and Google+ as the top three platforms,” said TNS’ Asia Pacific digital director Zoë Lawrence.
“This mass adoption of social provides marketers with an array of sources when it comes to developing strategies and evaluating the effectiveness of their marketing activity.
“As the digital ecosystem evolves, we will continue to identify new ways to build insights. However, whatever the metric used, it’s important to ensure marketers are monitoring the indicators that contribute to sales,” she added.
The TNS Marketing Monitor is based on responses from 2,250 marketing professionals across Asia Pacific.
The study was carried out in July 2016. Marketers from across 11 countries were questioned: Australia, China, India, Indonesia, Japan, Malaysia, New Zealand, the Philippines, Singapore, South Korea, and Thailand.
CRM focus
The study also highlighted the top priority for marketing departments this year – customer relationship management (CRM), TNS said.
The Marketing Monitor findings revealed that marketers’ sphere of activity has now broadened, as they concentrate on how to deliver the best overall customer experience, ahead of the traditional aim of increasing brand awareness.
To achieve this, businesses are using social media across a range of disciplines. For example, 46% of marketers in Malaysia are using social media for brand communications, but in addition, the same number uses it to provide customer service.
Social media appeared to be a big part of ecommerce strategy, with 50% using social media advertising and one in three (36%) using social media buy buttons.

Social media overtakes traditional marketing metrics in APAC

Despite this approach to using social to support a variety of marketing goals, the results showed that businesses are not working as collaboratively as they could be, with only half (56%) of marketers in Malaysia partnering with customer service teams, one in three (34%) working with the digital team and a mere 10% working with the insights department.
“With marketers using social for a range of marketing objectives, it is important that they are offering a consistent, coherent experience to the customer,” said Lawrence.
“Brands need to strive to break down the siloes in their organisations to ensure that they are realising the potential positive impact that an aligned, well-executed social strategy can deliver,” she added.
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