More than half of internet users believe that brands should be engaging with them online, though brands need to play by the rules of new media, according to a survey.

The survey, Effective Online PR: Helping brands succeed through new media, was conducted by Shiny Red. More than 606 people were surveyed via an online questionnaire on Shiny Media’s blog network.

Highlights from the survey:

  • 51% of respondents believe that brands should be engaging with them online.
  • 46% said their awareness of brands increases if they see information about them online, with 35% more likely to visit a company’s website if they have read about it online.

However, consumers expect companies that use the blogosphere to play by its rules… some 55% of respondents picked out examples of brands getting it wrong online. These included the use of fake bloggers, such as the blogs created by Edelman for Wal-Mart.

Another mistake is the failure to update blogs regularly enough – 48% expressed disapproval of this. Ticking the ‘we have a blog’ box isn’t enough.

The study also found that web users are consuming more media online and reading fewer magazines and newspapers, and watching less TV, though nine out of ten people still go to the traditional media outlets to read news online.