Are you a Cheerleader, Loyalist, Opportunist or Outsider? These are the new consumer segmentation groups identified by Porter Novelli in the agency’s latest European research into how we use social media.
Spanning the UK and five other countries, the report Social Consumers in Europe – which we have just launched – unveils four new typologies to help brands understand the social media behaviors of the audiences they want to engage with, and how to reach them more effectively. We’ve done this by comparing media consumption patterns and attitudes to online brand interaction and core human behaviours.
We interviewed more than 10,000 people, so we have deep international insights into how consumers are influencing the purchasing decisions of their family and friends, and whether they are brand loyal online, or digitally promiscuous.
The four social segments are:
- Cheerleaders (24% in Europe, 22% in the UK): Aged 20 to 40 they are social media super-users who spend twice as much time as the European average on social networks (94 minutes per day vs. 39) and accessing the Web via smart phones (62 minutes per day vs 24). This group is also the most likely to follow brands via social media for product news (59%), and are three times more likely than others to trust brand information on owned websites and social channels. Cheerleaders are also influencers: 76% recommend products they like to at least three friends. Cheerleaders account for 25% of women and 23% of men surveyed.
- Loyalists (18% in Europe, 19% in the UK): Like Cheerleaders, these mainly 20-45-year-olds are highly socially active. Around 82% access social networks once a day or more, and 95% of Loyalists will recommend products they like to friends. This group are the most likely to build long-term relationships with brands: 78% say once they have found a product or company they like they will stick with it. Loyalists represent 20% of all women and 16% of men interviewed.
- Opportunists (38% in Europe and UK): Typically older at 45-60, Opportunists are less socially-savvy or brand loyal. While they follow brands via social networks, their primary motivations for doing so are to receive vouchers and discounts (53%) and to enter competitions (41%). Opportunists are also price-sensitive, with 62% comparing prices from at least two sources before making a major purchase. Opportunists make up 39% of men and 38% of women surveyed.
- Outsiders (20% in Europe, 21% in the UK): The oldest group at 60+, Outsiders are online and use social media for personal reasons only. They do not engage with brands via social channels, preferring instead to find what they want on product websites and via search engines. Around 17% of women interviewed and 22% of men are Outsiders.
The research also shows that Britons lead the rest of Europe in media multi-tasking and consuming information from two or even three screens at once: in the UK we spend an average of 112 minutes a day simultaneously watching TV and going online via one or more laptop, tablet or mobile device compared to the European average of 91 minutes daily.
The different social segments included in the Social Consumers in Europe report provide strong insights to help with communications planning. For instance, Cheerleaders are not just heavy social media consumers; they also read the most print titles too, which underpins how important integrated on- and offline PR campaigns are. We also found that three quarters of Loyalists and Cheerleaders write product reviews and comments on brands’ own social profiles so as a minimum, companies need to actively read and respond.
We’d love to hear your feedback on our findings so please do tell us what you think!
Note: The research is the latest in the EuroPNStyles series which is conducted annually by Porter Novelli across a cross-section of European markets. Research took place online during July 2011 among 10,200 European consumers from seven countries: Belgium, France, Germany, the Netherlands, Spain and the United Kingdom, plus Portugal whose data was not included in this report. Around 1,700 consumers in the UK, Belgium, France, Germany and the Netherlands were interviewed, and 850 per country in Portugal and Spain.