Sunday, June 8, 2008

Convincing Statistics on Usage of Web 2.0 - Power of the Word of Mouth

There have been a number of studies spotlighting the latest in word of mouth and its importance in converting customers into revenue generating opportunities. So often we hear in our Web 2.0 research on innovation and best practices, where is the beef, and where are the benefits. Enclosed below is a collection from a number of sources that will hopefully help our customers and readers understand the value of social networking, web based commerce and new ways of communicating with customers and consumers to create trusted relationships. If you are not using web based social mediated collaboration approaches with your customers, you are missing out on major new opportunities to have effective conversations. This is a two part blog entry and will be followed up by a white paper which will regularly track these high impact benefits and statistics demonstrating the value of Web 2.0 and social mediated solutions for customer, employee or partner engagement practices.

Power of Word Of Mouth

Trust in "a person like me" has tripled, from 20% to 68% from 2004 to 2006. (Edelman Trust Barometer.

"Person like themselves" still most trusted source for information about a company and, therefore, products. (Edelman Trust Barometer, November 2007).

Recommendations from family and friends trump all other consumer touchpoints when it comes to influencing purchases,according to new data from Publicis media network ZenithOptimedia. (AdAge, April, 2008).

According to Global Nielsen survey of 26,486 Internet users in 47 markets;consumer recommendations are the most credible form of advertising among 78% of study’s respondents.(Nielsen:“Word-of-Mouth Most Powerful SellingTool”).

Online social network users were three times more likely to trust their peers’ opinions over advertising when making purchase decisions. (“Social Networking Sites: Defining Advertising Opportunities in a Competitive Landscape,” JupiterResearch, March 2007).

The two leading reasons people contribute content to social shopping sites are the need to feel part of a community (31%) and recognition from peers (28%).(IBM Institute for Business Value, August 2007).

A consumer survey by the JC Williams Group ranked consumer content as the #1 aid to a buying decision, cited by 91% of respondents. (JC Williams Group, 2006).

Consumers trust friends above experts when it comes to product recommendations (65% trust friends, 27% trust experts, 8% trust celebrities).(Yankelovich).

91% of moms prefer brands that other moms have recommended. (Marketing VOX, October 2006).

86.9% of respondents said they would trust a friend’s recommendation over a review by a critic, while 83.8% said they would trust user reviews over a critic. (Marketing Sherpa, July 2007).

When asked what sources of information they are “very likely” to consult before making a decision about their entertainment options,62% named Web sites with user reviews as their top choice, even beating out a knowledgeable friend (59%). (Marketing Sherpa, July 2007).

91% of US adults regularly or occasionally seek advice about products or services. BIGresearch).

Adult Internet users surveyed chose recommendations from friends as the one type of promotion they consider most worthwhile. (DoubleClick).

Review users noted that reviews generated by fellow consumers had a greater influence than those generated by professionals.(comScore/The Kelsey Group, October 2007).

Two thirds of UK social networkers (66%) are more likely to buy a product as a result of a recommendation, compared to 52 per cent of non-social networkers. (Royal Mail’s Home Shopping Tracker Study 2007).

Recommendation is the number one reason for choosing a particular site. (Royal Mail’s Home Shopping Tracker Study 2007).

In summary, Web 2.0 social mediated conversations leveraging what friends, families and trusted shoppers think about your products and services is one of the most powerful ways to grow your company's value proposition(s) and promote your brand. Ignoring these capabilities is a recipe for stagnation and demise.

Webify or Die!

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