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    Facebook Top Channel for Consumer Feedback: Study

    While consumers around the globe deem Web sites to be the proper destination for brand information and promotional offers, they choose Facebook as the place to air their opinions and connect with other customers, according to a study by Ipsos Marketing, Consumer Goods.

    While consumers around the globe deem Web sites to be the proper destination for brand information and promotional offers, they choose Facebook as the place to air their opinions and connect with other customers, according to a study by Ipsos Marketing, Consumer Goods.

    Although many consumer packaged goods companies have Facebook and Twitter pages for their brands, the study found that consumers are more likely to visit the brand’s Web site. This propensity is higher regardless of whether the category is food or beverages, household products, personal products, beauty or over-the-counter medication. When asked how likely they’d be to visit the various sites for each category, consumer interest ranged from 23 percent to 26 percent for a Web site, 10 percent to 15 percent for Facebook, and 9 percent to 12 percent for Twitter.

    The study also showed that consumers’ reasons for visiting a CPG brand’s Web site are different from their reasons for discussing a brand on Facebook or Twitter. The chief reason for visiting a Web site is to get information such as brand information, coupons, recipes, cleaning tips and health and beauty advice. By contrast, the main motivations for visiting a brand profile on Facebook and Twitter are to share opinions and experiences, and connecting with other consumers, with Facebook garnering the highest percentage of consumers looking to reveal their brand opinions in an online forum.

    “Our data indicates that brand profiles on Facebook are good complements to CPG Web sites,” said Lauren Demar, CEO, Ipsos Marketing, Global Consumer Goods Sector. “Consumers visit Web sites for information and promotional offers; however, when they really want to express their opinions about a CPG brand, they turn to Facebook.”

    According to Demar: “Marketers are appropriately exploring the use of Facebook as a new way to ‘listen’ to their consumers. Web sites are ideal for sharing information about the brand offer with its consumer franchise. However, Facebook can be leveraged to really listen to what consumers are saying about the brand experience, by providing them with what they may perceive to be a less threatening forum for self-expression. For Twitter, it is less clear. Marketers can enrich the value of social networking sites by elevating the consumer experience and ensuring it is consistently engaging, useful in terms of content, and a two-way conversation. Net, Web sites and social networking forums like Facebook each have a role to play in establishing and building a bond with the consumer.”

    The online study of citizens around the world, carried out by Ipsos Marketing, Consumer Goods via the Ipsos Global @dvisor International Omnibus between Nov. 4, 2009, and Jan. 13, 2010, involved 21,623 adults age 18 and older in 23 countries. Participating countries were Argentina, Australia, Belgium, Brazil, Canada, China, France, Germany, Hungary, India, Italy, Japan, Mexico, Poland, Russia, South Korea, Spain, Sweden, the Czech Republic, the Netherlands, Great Britain, the United States and Turkey.

    Ipsos is a global market research company with headquarters in Paris.

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