Indian firms use social media for marketing optimisation

by Darinia Khongwir    May 29, 2013

Social media

Indian organisations use social media much more than the global average and their counterparts in emerging economies. According to a study of social media marketing practices among various social media-savvy organisations in India, show that many marketers in India use social media optimally to reach out to their target base.

According to the study commissioned by Oracle, it was found that 95.7 percent of those surveyed use the medium to build communities and advocate usage, while 76.1 percent use social media as a platform to highlight brand news. Around 16 percent of organisations that use social media for both the above reasons also use it for customer service, lead generation, and research indicating high social maturity and moving toward getting business meanings out of engagements.

Facebook is the most important platform for marketers in India for engaging customers, followed by Twitter, YouTube and blogging. Almost half of the social media-savvy organizations are already using emerging platforms such as Pinterest, Google Plus, and Foursquare.

Social media and marketing campaigns

Social media-savvy organisations in India have conducted campaigns where social media is the leading component. Among the respondents, 87.5 percent said they have conducted campaigns where social media was the leading component. More than half have speeded up processes or have shown a special favour for their online fans and followers that they wouldn’t normally do for their offline customers.

Popular practices

A majority of social media-savvy organisations prefer to post generic updates instead of brand updates and posts multiple updates a day. A majority of them respond to fan queries within 30 to 60 minutes on Twitter and within 30 minutes to a few hours on Facebook. Picture contests are the most popular contests—most contests are organized monthly.

Some of those surveyed have social media guidelines for better governance and online monitoring programs to listen to conversations; however, less than half have crisis manuals. Many use tools for online monitoring, response management, or managing social media platforms.

Almost half of the respondents have conducted research using social media tools to garner customer feedback and understand more about customer behaviour. Half said they have created mobile phone apps and one-fourth plans to create one.

Social media ads

Many organisations use social media ads to promote campaigns and brand awareness and find them beneficial. About 83 percent said that they have used social media ads, with majority of the ads being used to promote a contest/promotion or for brand awareness and 88.6 percent said they find social media ads to be beneficial in achieving those objectives.

Measuring social media success

Organisations social media efforts through platform-specific parameters and 81 percent said that they measure it through platform-specific parameters such as likes, people talking about this, etc. About 46.7 percent said they have not measured revenue from their social media efforts.

Social media budget

Almost half, 41.5 percent, of social media-savvy organisations spend 1–5 percent of their marketing budget on social media that is above Rs 10 Million. Three-fourths have their social media budget below Rs 10 Million, while a little above a quarter of those surveyed have social media budgets exceeding Rs 20 Million.

Future of social media

Social media-savvy organisations are very optimistic about the role of social media in their organizations. Though measures such as sales and leads are not very evident for all organizations, they have realised that it plays an important role in generating insights and engaging with customers on a continued basis. Social media has helped organizations to create their own communities of fans, customers or prospects. In the future, organizations hope to focus more on social media and are looking forward greater adoption within their organizations.