Holiday Shopping Report: Consumers Want More Social Media Deals

Holiday Shopping Report: Consumers Want More Social Media Deals

Marketers Have to Find the Balance: Shoppers Increasingly Open to Money-Saving
Offers on Social Channels, but Not to Promotional Message Overload

PORTLAND, Ore., Oct. 30, 2012 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- According to a new holiday
shopping report from Yesmail Interactive, consumers want to see more deals on
social media than brands have been offering; however, the research also shows
that shoppers tune out companies that bombard them with too many promotions
around the holidays.

The findings suggest that retailers have to get the tone and timing of their
campaigns right in order to drive critical fourth-quarter sales.

"Consumers are oversaturated with holiday messages this time of year," said
Michael Fisher, president of Yesmail Interactive, an Infogroup company. "We're
not suggesting that brands ignore the holidays on social media, but marketers
have to strike a balance between using social channels to drive sales and
simply engaging with customers who are celebrating the holidays."

The Yesmail report, based on a consumer shopping trends survey and an analysis
of the digital marketing campaigns of 20 brands over a three-month period,
found that many leading retailers are underutilizing social media as a channel
to promote deals.

The survey found that:

  *Half of consumers are influenced by social media when making online
    purchases, compared to 42 percent for in-store purchases.
  *34 percent have purchased a product as a direct result of a social media
  *Only 8 percent of Facebook campaigns and 4 percent of Twitter campaigns
    for the brands tracked focused on money-saving promotions.


While the report shows that consumers are more open to social media promotions
in general, it also revealed a point of caution for marketers: Holiday-themed
promotions often perform worse than non-holiday promotions in terms of

The study tracked the social media campaigns for the brands released during
the spring and summer, where 14 percent of Facebook campaigns and 8 percent of
Twitter campaigns had a holiday theme. The findings showed that those
campaigns that focused heavily on getting the consumer to purchase showed
less-than-average engagement, while the messages aimed at simply getting
followers into the respective holiday spirit performed much better.

"The winners focused on what the season means to consumers, rather than using
the holiday to directly promote a product or sales event," Fisher said.
"Brands have to be especially careful about not being overly promotional
during the holidays, even though customers are increasingly turning to social
channels to find deals."

Other Yesmail findings provide additional insight into how brands can leverage
social media this holiday season:

  *Consumers are most likely to interact with a brand on social channels when
    researching a product and after getting an email promotion, and less
    likely right before they make a purchase and immediately afterward.
  *Almost 60 percent prefer to interact with brands on social media between 6
    p.m. and 2 a.m., but the majority of brands run social campaigns during
    office hours.
  *The most common interaction with brands on social media is liking a
    Facebook page (57 percent), followed by commenting and asking for product
    recommendations from friends.
  *The least common interactions are tweeting about a brand (8 percent) and
    adding a brand to a Google+ circle (4 percent).

To gauge consumer shopping preferences, Yesmail polled more than 500 consumers
about their general and holiday shopping habits. Using its Yesmail Market
Intelligence tool, the company also tracked the digital marketing campaigns of
Amazon, Apple, Best Buy, Crate & Barrel, Dell, Game Stop, HH Gregg, JC Penney,
Kohl's, Macy's, Nordstrom, Pottery Barn, Rue La La, Sears, Sprint, T-Mobile,
Toys 'R' Us, Verizon, Walmart and Williams Sonoma.

To view the full Yesmail report, "Consumer Online Behavior Report: Developing
Informed Digital Marketing Strategies for Holiday Success," please visit


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