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BizReport : Social Marketing : February 01, 2007

High percentage of consumers seeking and giving product advice online

New survey finds that 90 percent of consumers occasionally or regularly go online to give or seek product and service advice from others, and marketers are increasingly willing to embrace this non-traditional marketing option.

by Helen Leggatt

Word-of-mouth is gaining momentum online. The explosion of social media has facilitated online consumers seeking the advice of others. According to a Universal McCann study, reviewing products/giving feedback is the second-most popular web activity. The most popular topics being discussed are financial products, maps/directions, medical information and motors.

"People who give advice to others also like to seek advice as a way of gaining knowledge on products which they will then pass along to advice givers," said Joe Pilotta, VP, Research of BIGresearch.

These are the findings of the latest Simultaneous Media Study by BIGresearch, who also found that there is little difference in the number of givers (96.9 %) and seekers (96.6%) when it comes to researching a product online before purchasing. Gary Drenik, CEO of BIGresearch, commented "These two consumer groups are essentially one and the same."

"One of the primary means for gaining product knowledge for advice givers is through Internet searches and some sites are used much more than others by advice givers and seekers. For example, for regular advice givers and advice seekers, the top five search engines are the same: Google, Yahoo, MSN, AOL and Ask," added Pilotta.

Tags: online community, online shopping, Social Networking, word-of-mouth

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