tag:econsultancy.com,2008:/topics/messaging Latest Messaging content from Econsultancy 2017-04-27T15:16:00+01:00 tag:econsultancy.com,2008:BlogPost/69041 2017-04-27T15:16:00+01:00 2017-04-27T15:16:00+01:00 Social commerce: Why basic bots and buy buttons are not enough Nikki Gilliland <p>It seems that despite mobile commerce rising in popularity – and with one in four users trying to purchase a product on social last year – many brands have struggled to find the right balance between social media and ecommerce. </p> <p>In fact, a recent survey suggests that <a href="http://uk.businessinsider.com/buy-buttons-fail-to-show-return-on-investment-2016-12?r=US&amp;IR=T" target="_blank">45% of adults have no current interest</a> in clicking on a 'buy now' button, while a further quarter don’t even know the technology exists. Meanwhile, many brands are scaling back on chatbots after Facebook reported a <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/68868-facebook-scales-back-on-chatbots-what-does-it-mean-for-brands/" target="_blank">failure rate</a> of 70%.</p> <p>So, how can brands make social commerce appealing to users, as well as ensure the process is seamless across channels? </p> <p>This was a question asked at a recent event held by We Are Social, where a number of brands spoke about their previous experience and what they think will be the key to success. Here are a few takeaways.</p> <h3>Most buy buttons do not mirror the user mind-set</h3> <p>While it’s true that users are increasingly turning to social media for shopping inspiration, many brands are failing to realise how big the leap to buying on social actually is. Currently, the reality of social commerce is often very different to the user’s expectations. </p> <p>Caroline Lucas-Garner, strategy director at We Are Social, explained how most experiences involve clicking on a link in a social bio. This then means being taken from the cosy bubble of Instagram to an interim landing page, before finally onto the main ecommerce site itself.</p> <p>That’s a lot of disruption when you think about it, which could naturally lead to users abandoning the journey, or worse – being put off the brand as a result. </p> <p>Similarly, Caroline suggested that buy buttons on other platforms can be akin to a pushy sales assistant, which when you’re simply having a leisurely browse (or scroll), can feel frustratingly intrusive.</p> <h3>Brands in your Messenger inbox feel unnatural </h3> <p>Chatbots are of course another big part of social commerce – we’ve seen many examples of branded bots created for customer service or to drive conversions.</p> <p>But do users really feel that comfortable allowing them into this space? It's an odd notion to see a message from a brand alongside your nearest and dearest.</p> <p>Dominos is one brand that has tried to get around this by creating a character specifically to front its chatbot. <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/68184-domino-s-introduces-dom-the-pizza-bot-for-facebook-messenger/" target="_blank">Dom the Pizza Bot</a> has his own unique set of characteristics, designed to urge people to speak to it like they would a friend. </p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/5752/Dom_the_pizza_bot.JPG" alt="" width="658" height="309"></p> <p>Another way to make users feel more comfortable interacting with brands in this context is to establish boundaries early on – even making it clear that a bot has limitations. </p> <p>Sam Poullain, senior growth marketing manager at Skyscanner, explained how his team made the decision to include a ‘talk to a human’ option in its chatbot to point users towards an alternative or next step. This way, it was able to prevent people from abandoning their journey, giving users an option to talk to a real employee instead.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/5753/Skyscanner.JPG" alt="" width="740" height="323"></p> <p>For more on this topic, read:</p> <ul> <li><a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/67894-what-are-chatbots-and-why-should-marketers-care/">What are chatbots and why should marketers care?</a></li> <li><a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/68932-how-we-built-our-facebook-chatbot-what-does-it-do-and-what-s-the-point/">How we built our Facebook chatbot: What does it do, and what's the point?</a></li> </ul> <h3>Brand messaging <em>can</em> drive conversion</h3> <p>For ASOS, a brand that has seen growth of 84% on mobile orders year-on-year – social commerce feels like a natural evolution. It is clear that its target customer is highly engaged on social, with those aged 16-14 particularly overlooking search engines for discovery platforms like Instagram and Facebook.  </p> <p>Morgan Fitzsimons, ASOS’s acting head of content and broadcast, explained how the brand is now taking a three-tiered approach to targeting these kinds of customers – choosing to focus on the top of the funnel to ensure the bottom doesn’t have to work so hard. In other words, this means focusing on the brand messaging – not just the buy button.</p> <p>Its recent campaign for jeans is a prime example of this, using a combination of organic and paid promotion as well as dynamic product ads. An initial video tells the story of the brand but doesn’t include any further links. It instead introduces hints of the shopping experience in retargeted ads, before delivering blatant buying options in the final push. </p> <p><iframe src="https://www.facebook.com/plugins/video.php?href=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.facebook.com%2Fasos.us%2Fvideos%2F1540714015970588%2F&amp;show_text=0&amp;width=560" width="560" height="315"></iframe></p> <p>Morgan also admitted that it’s taken a while for ASOS to get to this stage, with previous campaigns on Snapchat failing to follow up with those who first engaged.  </p> <p>Ultimately, she reiterated that success in social commerce lies in continually testing. Only then will brands understand how customers will best respond in this new and unique context. </p> <p><em><strong>Relating reading:</strong></em></p> <ul> <li><em><a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/67778-made-com-on-the-value-of-social-commerce/" target="_blank">MADE.COM on the value of social commerce</a></em></li> <li><em><a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/67306-is-pinterest-or-instagram-better-for-driving-ecommerce/" target="_blank">Is Pinterest or Instagram better for driving ecommerce?</a></em></li> </ul> tag:econsultancy.com,2008:BlogPost/69008 2017-04-20T01:01:00+01:00 2017-04-20T01:01:00+01:00 Which channels do marketers really use? Jeff Rajeck <p>Part of what makes marketing interesting is that the discipline is constantly evolving. Hardly a week goes by without some major change to a consumer service or a new way to use a platform to engage with our audiences.</p> <p>Yet sometimes the pace of change can be overwhelming. It's often difficult to both keep up with the latest innovations and stay on top of daily marketing tasks.</p> <p>To find out just how necessary it is for marketers to be familiar with the latest platforms, <strong>we surveyed over 200 marketers in Australia and New Zealand about the channels they use for their marketing efforts</strong>. Below are some of the surprising findings along with some commentary.</p> <p>For more data from the survey please refer to the Econsultancy report, <a href="https://econsultancy.com/reports/cross-channel-marketing-in-australia-and-new-zealand">Cross-Channel Marketing in ANZ</a>, produced in association with IBM Marketing Cloud.</p> <h3>1. Conventional digital channels still rule</h3> <p>First off, the survey results make it clear that <strong>marketers are most frequently using familiar digital touchpoints for their marketing efforts</strong>. Social media, email, and SEO (natural search) are all used by more than eight in ten marketers (87%, 87%, 81% respectively).</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/5487/top__5_channels.png" alt="" width="800" height="514"></p> <p>One reason these channels are the most popular is because <strong>companies tend to use channels which are well-understood and easy to integrate into overall marketing activity.</strong></p> <p>The conventional channels are also where the brands' customers are spending their time.   </p> <ul> <li> <strong>Email</strong>: According to the <a href="http://www.radicati.com/wp/wp-content/uploads/2015/02/Email-Statistics-Report-2015-2019-Executive-Summary.pdf">Radicati group</a>, more than 2.5bn people use email every month.  </li> <li> <strong>Social</strong>: The largest global social network, Facebook, <a href="http://money.cnn.com/2017/02/01/technology/facebook-earnings/">is now approaching 2bn monthly active users (MAUs)</a>.</li> <li> <strong>Search</strong>: Google has announced that its search platform has <a href="http://www.theverge.com/2016/2/1/10889492/gmail-1-billion-google-alphabet">at least 1bn MAUs</a>.</li> </ul> <p>When the usage of these platforms is compared to, say, Snapchat, we can easily see why marketers are so much more likely to use them.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/5486/1.png" alt="" width="800" height="371"></p> <h3>2. Offline touchpoints are still relied upon by many brands</h3> <p>A somewhat surprising result from the survey is that <strong>offline touchpoints are still a significant part of the marketing mix.</strong> While point-of-sale and call centres are only used by around one in three companies (34% and 31% respectively), traditional media and events are used by significantly more (47%, 71% respectively).</p> <p>The popularity of offline touchpoints makes a bit more sense when data from <a href="https://www.consumerbarometer.com">recent research from Google</a> is considered.</p> <p>Google recently surveyed consumers in Australia and New Zealand and reported that only <strong>just over half of consumers (58% Australia, 53% New Zealand) used an online channel to research or purchase a product.</strong></p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/5489/google1.png" alt="" width="800" height="348"></p> <p>So to reach customers where they are likely to research their products and buy them, marketers must still operate offline to a significant extent.</p> <h3>3. Mobile is not as popular as you might think</h3> <p>Another interesting survey result is that mobile touchpoints are less popular in Australia and New Zealand than offline channels.</p> <p>Though the mobile web is used by nearly half (49%) of client-side respondents, mobile messaging, mobile apps, messaging apps and mobile push notifications are each only part of less than one in four companies' marketing efforts (23%, 22%, 10%, 7%, respectively).</p> <p>This apparent lack of enthusiasm for mobile is even more confusing considering the relatively high penetration of smartphones in the region. More than <a href="https://www.statista.com/statistics/257041/smartphone-user-penetration-in-australia/">80% in Australia</a> and <a href="http://www.researchnz.com/pdf/special%20reports/research%20new%20zealand%20special%20report%20-%20use%20of%20smartphones.pdf">70%  in New Zealand</a> use mobile devices with internet connectivity.</p> <p>But going back to Google's Consumer Barometer data offers a reasonable explanation. When asked where in the buying cycle did people use a smartphone, <strong>fewer than 50% use a smartphone for anything at all in the buying cycle and only around 10% use a smartphone for buying.</strong></p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/5490/google2.png" alt="" width="800" height="185"></p> <p>So while there is a lot of advice out there about how brands should 'embrace' mobile and aim to be 'mobile-first', <strong>i</strong><strong>t seems that consumers are not quite there yet with mobile. </strong></p> <h3>4. Messaging apps hardly appear on brands' radars</h3> <p>From our data, it seems that the biggest chasm between conventional wisdom and reality concerns messaging apps. If you read the tech press, you'd be forgiven for thinking that messaging apps dominated our culture and each change to these apps affects millions of lives. Marketers, one might think, should be flocking to them in droves.</p> <p>While there is some chance that this is <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/68429-six-things-marketers-should-know-about-social-media-in-asia-pacific/">true in China</a>, <strong>marketers in Australia and New Zealand indicated that messaging apps are not popular channels for marketing in the region.</strong> A mere 10% of client-side marketers use messaging apps and only 15% of agency marketers said the same.</p> <p>From other data, it's clear that the problem with messaging apps isn't consumer interest. <a href="http://www.onmsg.com.au/">According to messaging app agency On Message</a>, Australia will have over 11m messaging app users in 2017 and messaging apps are the primary form of contact for more than half (54%) of 15-19 year olds in the country.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/5491/On_Message.png" alt="" width="800" height="234"></p> <p>Instead, it is much more likely that <strong>messaging apps are still simply too difficult to use for marketing.</strong> Besides some basic self-service ads on Facebook Messenger, engaging with messaging users requires dedicated resource to build contact lists, 'man' the consumer outreach or customer service desk, and build bots to handle incoming traffic.</p> <p>This is not to say that marketing via messaging apps will never happen, but rather that it is likely that it will be some time before most brands have to worry about engaging their customers on these platforms.</p> tag:econsultancy.com,2008:BlogPost/68964 2017-04-11T01:00:00+01:00 2017-04-11T01:00:00+01:00 Does Snapchat matter in Asia? Jeff Rajeck <p>While most smartphone users in the region had certainly heard of Snapchat <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/63836-is-snapchat-right-for-your-brand/">because of its 'sexting' past</a>, few people talk about the platform and even fewer brands are using it for marketing. In fact, according to a report from April of last year, Snapchat ad units such as sponsored stories, lenses and geofilters <a href="https://www.linkedin.com/pulse/snapchat-what-asian-marketers-need-know-jonathan-rudd">weren't even available in Asia</a>.  </p> <p>Before totally discounting the app, though, we must remember that such things were said about every social network which has subsequently been successful in the region. First it was laughable that it would ever gain traction in Asia and then suddenly it becomes the dominant social network in multiple Asian countries, often displacing local competitors.</p> <p>So despite the apparent lack of interest now, should Asian marketers consider Snapchat as the next big thing?<strong>  </strong>While it's not possible to give a definitive response to that question, the short answer is 'probably not', for a few key reasons.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/5221/spectacles.jpg" alt="" width="800" height="319"></p> <p><em>Snap recently released hardware demonstrating that the company had a maverick streak which might allow it to beat Facebook at its own game, but the app has not seen widespread adoption in Asia.</em></p> <h4>The existing Snapchat user base in Asia is very small</h4> <p>First off, Snapchat has not been able to leverage its popularity in the West to 'break into' Asia and so, relatively speaking, usage of the network is quite low across the region.</p> <p>While many companies report Snapchat penetration based on surveys, usage numbers vary widely across reports.  GlobalWebIndex recently reported that <a href="https://www.globalwebindex.net/blog/over-75-percent-of-teens-in-uk-on-snapchat">Snapchat was used by more than 80% of teens in Singapore</a>, but that overall penetration in both countries remained in single digits.</p> <p>More recently, Kantar TNF claimed that Snapchat usage had nearly doubled in the region between 2014 and 2016 (8% to 15%) and that nearly half (46%) of Hong Kong's internet users are now on the platform.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/5224/snap2016.jpg" alt="" width="800" height="261"></p> <p>While these numbers seem impressive, these usage figures appear to be based on downloads and not on active users. Snap itself reports Daily Active Users (DAUs) as its main growth metric as any other usage frequency besides daily is rather meaningless for a chat application.</p> <p>Statista reports that there are now <a href="https://www.statista.com/statistics/552671/snapchat-app-dau-region/">39 million Snapchat DAUs</a> in the 'Rest of the World' outside North America and Europe, but even if all of those users were all in Asia that would indicate that only around 2% of Asian internet users use Snapchat regularly.</p> <h4>Snapchat does not seem to be growing in the region</h4> <p>Additionally, there are few indicators of growth. The Statista DAU number did grow 50% between Q4 2015 and Q4 2016 (24m to 39m), but even at that rate it would be 2020 before the platform hit 10% penetration in the region.</p> <p>App Annie, which shows the popularity of various apps by country according to number of downloads, also indicates that Snapchat is struggling in the region.</p> <p>Whereas Facebook and Instagram consistently appear in the top 25 of app downloads in Hong Kong and Singapore, Snapchat is currently hovering around #33 in Singapore and #57 in Hong Kong. In Japan, where Instagram is the 14th most popular, Snapchat is not even in the top 100.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/5225/snapdownload.jpg" alt="" width="800" height="596"></p> <p>While download popularity cannot be directly mapped to growth trajectory, it would seem that if Snapchat were about to enjoy explosive growth in the region it would be outperforming other social media apps in this area.</p> <h4>Snapchat's average revenue per user (ARPU) outside of N. America and Europe is very low</h4> <p>Another key growth metric which was revealed in the IPO filing was the average revenue per user (ARPU) on the platform. ARPU is significant as it shows whether brands value the platform enough to pay to advertise on it.</p> <p>Again, Snap did not provide Asia-specific data, but it did break out 'Rest of World' from Europe and North America.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/5226/snap-arpu.png" alt="" width="847" height="377"></p> <p>Here we see that in Q4 2016, Snap reported a measly $0.15 of revenue per non-US/European user. Compare this with Facebook who, just prior to IPO in 2012, was receiving around $0.50 per user in Asia Pacific. And more recently (Q4 2016), Facebook reported income of $2.07 per user in Asia-Pacific.</p> <p>By this measure, Snapchat is underperforming Facebook significantly in Asia and so it seems that brands are not yet investing in the platform outside of Europe and North America.</p> <h4>Competition is already nipping at Snapchat's heels in Asia</h4> <p>Finally, Snapchat is being ruthlessly copied both by existing competitors at home and by new ones in Asia.</p> <p>Facebook's has been <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/68946-what-the-commodification-of-snapchat-stories-means-for-marketers/">regularly adopting Snapchat features</a> in its core product as well as in Messenger, Instagram, and WhatsApp. This has already slowed Snapchat's growth in North America <a href="https://techcrunch.com/2017/02/02/slowchat/">by more than 80% in 2016.</a></p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/5227/snapchat-instagram-growth.png" alt="" width="738" height="386"></p> <p>Less covered, however, is that in a new market which is unfamiliar with Snapchat, such as Asia, users will be even less likely to be interested in the originator (Snapchat) and be more likely to stick with the familiar platforms which offer the same features (Facebook / Instagram).</p> <p>Snapchat also faces competition in Asia from a Korean startup, Snow.</p> <p>Snow is basically a feature-for-feature clone of Snapchat, but it offers lenses and filters which are more culturally relevant in Asia than Snapchat's. Because of its regional focus, Snow has quickly grown to around 50 million active users (January 2017) and was most recently valued at over $200 million.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/7661/snapchat2.jpg" alt="" width="665" height="604"></p> <p>That valuation is a far cry from Snap's current market cap ($26 billion), but Snow doesn't need to match Snapchat in market value in order to significantly slow its predecessor's progress in the region. Snow simply has to fulfill the same niche as Snapchat and, <a href="http://money.cnn.com/2017/03/02/technology/snow-asia-snapchat-rival/">by all accounts</a>, it is doing that very well.</p> <h4>So...</h4> <p>So will Snapchat take over Asia - or will its global takeover plans hit a brick wall in the region? It's hard to say and betting against a US social media company is a gamble few would take.</p> <p>Yet, it's hard to see how Snapchat is going to enter a market where it is starting from such a low base and already faces significant competition.</p> <p>Snap, the parent company, didn't just raise over $3 billion to sit on its hands though, and so, against all odds, we are surely about to see the app's familiar white ghost try to take over Asia very soon.</p> <h4><em>More APAC content:</em></h4> <ul> <li><a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/68971-does-airbnb-stand-a-chance-in-china/">Does Airbnb stand a chance in China?</a></li> </ul> tag:econsultancy.com,2008:BlogPost/68934 2017-04-03T14:11:00+01:00 2017-04-03T14:11:00+01:00 How chatbots and AI might impact the B2C financial services industry Alasdair Graham <p>Because of this, a significant proportion of FS businesses may not have felt the need to invest in digital. This is also potentially exacerbated by the fact that their competitors and cohorts are also lagging in terms of digital. Research by Econsultancy and Adobe shows that <a href="https://econsultancy.com/reports/digital-trends-in-the-financial-services-and-insurance-sector-2016/">9% of FS businesses claim to be digital-first</a>, compared to 11% across all sectors.</p> <p>As younger, digitally native clients begin moving into the market for financial services at both a consumer level and professional level, becoming ‘digital first’ is now imperative for the financial services industry.</p> <p>In addition to the changing workforce and consumer landscape, the FCA also launched the <a href="https://www.fca.org.uk/firms/financial-advice-market-review-famr?field_fcasf_sector=unset&amp;field_fcasf_page_category=unset">Financial Advice Market Review</a> in late 2015 which aimed to review and explore ways in which financial institutions can take actions to:</p> <ul> <li>Provide affordable advice to consumers.</li> <li>Improve and increase access to advice.</li> <li>Address industry concerns relating to future liabilities and redress without watering down levels of consumer protection.</li> </ul> <p>With these goals in mind, <a href="https://econsultancy.com/reports/marketing-in-the-age-of-artificial-intelligence/">AI</a>, <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/68046-five-pioneering-examples-of-how-brands-are-using-chatbots/">chatbots</a> and digital tick a range of boxes, particularly under the “affordability” and “accessibility” criteria.</p> <p>Like some systems that consumers may be familiar with, such as virtual assistants like Siri, Cortana or Amazon’s Echo platform, chatbots are essentially pieces of software that simulate human, natural language conversations and can respond to and act upon queries and commands from users.</p> <p>The advantage these systems have over a ‘real’ conversation with a human is that they are able to extract and analyse a user’s needs and intent and ultimately return the information a user has requested or perform actions for them faster, at any time of day or night, more accurately and at significantly lower cost than a human counterpart.</p> <p>This new AI technology has been taken note of by financial institutions on a global scale, with 80% viewing them as an opportunity.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/5222/bots_opportunity.png" alt="" width="565" height="402"></p> <p><em>Image Source: <a href="https://thefinancialbrand.com/63596/financial-banking-bots-chatbot-voice-ai/">The Financial Brand</a></em></p> <h3>Bots are viewed as an opportunity by the financial services sector</h3> <p>As with most emerging technologies, smaller, agile fintech startups have been quick to adopt chatbot technology out of both necessity and choice. This mitigates the issue of expensive traditional customer service interactions and ultimately benefits the end users through savings and improved customer experiences.</p> <p>UK startup <a href="https://www.habito.com/">Habito</a> built the world’s first AI mortgage advice chatbot which queries applicant’s financial status, asking questions covering an applicant’s salary, personal life and employment.</p> <p>After this 10-15 minute ‘chat’ the bot then collates all the data given and queries hundreds of products, as opposed to the handful that a human advisor would be able to query, and in a fraction of the time.</p> <p>In line with the FCA’s ‘financial advice market review’ this results in a far less stressful process for the consumer, free of having to schedule and attend appointments within office hours, paying a premium for advice, or interacting with a potentially biased party.</p> <p>According to Habito's CEO and founder Daniel Hegarty: "Our digital mortgage adviser is a huge step forward in making mortgage advice accessible for consumers in the way they need it most: unbiased, always available and, most importantly, free.”</p> <p>Ultimately, this move to fully automated, impartial chatbot-based advice could result in consumers saving thousands of pounds per year.</p> <p>The benefits of this type of technology are clear with many people choosing to apply and research mortgages online through these types of systems rather than spending the extra time and potentially cash on a human mortgage broker that may not necessarily have the best deals available. These systems could potentially pave the way to a fully automated mortgage approval, further removing the potential for human error and bias from the process.</p> <p>American bank Capital One also launched a chatbot called ‘Eno’.  Eno is able to interpret text-based conversational queries and commands alongside emojis.</p> <p><iframe src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/jvyHcjZoGJk?wmode=transparent" width="640" height="360"></iframe></p> <p>This includes the ability to check balances and pay off credit cards, while cash transfers are also in the works. Additionally for customers with Amazon Echo, <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/68791-should-financial-services-brands-follow-capital-one-on-to-amazon-echo/">Capital One has also built out a ‘skill’ that allows for voice commands</a>.</p> <p>The benefits of this are clear from both sides – consumers get what is equivalent to an ‘always on’ personal assistant at the bank that can perform actions for them without having to interact with cumbersome apps or websites and convoluted log-in processes for basic requests.</p> <h3>Percentage of FI's that believe bots will take over many of today's customer conversations</h3> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/5223/percentage_of_fis.png" alt="" width="565" height="362"></p> <p><em>Image Source: <a href="https://thefinancialbrand.com/63596/financial-banking-bots-chatbot-voice-ai/">The Financial Brand</a></em></p> <p>At the business side, Capital One stand to make significant savings in terms of time and manpower as users transition from face-to-face and telephone queries to simply asking Eno.</p> <p>Given the abundance of data available to financial services firms and the often methodical, process-driven nature of consumer financial advice, chatbots seem like an easy decision for most consumer-facing financial services companies.</p> <p>The fact that mobile is now a huge factor in financial services and particularly banking is also a huge opportunity for chatbots and AI. Chatbots are particularly well suited for mobile given that messaging is arguably one of the most used features on smartphones.  </p> <p>Not to mention that financial service chatbots could easily be integrated into applications that billions of consumers already have and are using daily such as Facebook Messenger and WhatsApp. This removes a significant barrier to entry in that consumers don’t have to download another app or alter their existing mobile behaviour patterns.</p> <p>With the above in mind, businesses within the financial services industry will only truly realise the advantages of AI and chatbots if it is implemented as part of a well-considered, omnichannel strategy.</p> <p><strong><em>Related reading:</em></strong></p> <ul> <li><a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/68934-how-chatbots-and-ai-might-impact-the-b2c-financial-services-industry/"><em>How chatbots and AI might impact the B2C financial services industry</em></a></li> <li><a href="https://econsultancy.com/reports/financial-services-and-insurance-internet-statistics-compendium/"><em>Financial Services and Insurance Internet Statistics Compendium</em></a></li> <li><a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/68932-how-we-built-our-facebook-chatbot-what-does-it-do-and-what-s-the-point/"><em>How we built our Facebook chatbot: What does it do, and what's the point?</em></a></li> </ul> tag:econsultancy.com,2008:BlogPost/68954 2017-03-31T13:25:00+01:00 2017-03-31T13:25:00+01:00 10 mesmerising digital marketing stats from this week Nikki Gilliland <p>If that’s not enough, head on over to the <a href="https://econsultancy.com/reports/internet-statistics-compendium" target="_blank">Internet Statistics Compendium</a> for more.</p> <h3>Video advertising outperforms desktop display</h3> <p style="font-weight: normal;">A report released by Integral Ad Science has revealed that video advertising outperformed desktop display for the first time. </p> <p style="font-weight: normal;">Compared to the first half of 2016, video viewability showed significant improvement in the second half of the year, increasing from 40% to 58.2%. Meanwhile, the completion rate in view increased from 26.7% to 35.1%.</p> <p style="font-weight: normal;">Video brand risk also improved, decreasing from 11.2% to 8.9%. That being said, with the advent of fake news, brand safety remains a critical issue for advertisers, highlighting the need for a solution to protect brand reputations.</p> <h3>One in nine online visits were made to news and media sites in 2016</h3> <p>Hitwise suggests that there’s been a shift in the British public’s media consumption, predicted to be due to the impact of today’s political landscape. </p> <p>Data shows that, as well as consuming more news across broader sources, people are now beginning to question the validity of news providers and changing their preferences of media titles as a result. One in nine visits online were made to news and media sites in 2016 compared to 1 in 10 visits in 2015.</p> <p>Articles focusing on Trump and Brexit accounted for five out of the top 10 read articles in January and February 2017. Meanwhile, in the month before and after Trump’s inauguration, left-leaning newspapers such as the Guardian and The Independent gained readers from traditional tabloids, such as The Sun, Express and Daily Mail.  </p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/5157/Hitwise_1.png" alt="" width="510" height="464"></p> <h3>Consumers increasingly favouring mobile loyalty programs</h3> <p>The 2017 <a href="http://www.vibes.com/resources/2017-uk-mobile-consumer-report/" target="_blank">Mobile Consumer Report</a> from Vibes highlights a link between digital loyalty programs and greater consumer loyalty.</p> <p>Research shows that 70% of consumers would have a more positive opinion of a brand if it allowed them to save a loyalty card in their smartphone. Over one-third of people are said to store information from brands in a mobile wallet such as Apple Wallet and Android Pay.</p> <p>83% of smartphone users also say that receiving surprise rewards, exclusive content and special birthday or anniversary messaging would have a positive impact on their brand loyalty overall.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/5161/Mobile_Consumer_report.jpg" alt="" width="763" height="756"></p> <h3>Mobile consumers in emerging markets are more intolerant of bad user experiences</h3> <p>A new report by <a href="http://wearefetch.com/cms/content/media/2015/12/Fetch-Global-Mobile-Consumer-Survey.pdf" target="_blank">Fetch</a> suggests that brands should consider shifting their mobile advertising focus to emerging markets, as levels of engagement rapidly increase.</p> <p>According to research, 31% of users in emerging markets define themselves as mobile-first, compared to 15% in Europe and 18% in North America.</p> <p>Similarly, where 66% of European consumers claim to access social media every hour, this rises to 72% amongst emerging markets.</p> <p>Lastly, mobile-first consumers in emerging markets are more intolerant of bad <a href="https://econsultancy.com/reports/user-experience-and-interaction-design-for-mobile-and-web/">mobile web experiences</a>, with 84% saying they would leave a mobile website if it loaded slowly, compared to 69% in Europe and 75% in North America.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/5160/Fetch_mobile_consumer.jpg" alt="" width="780" height="280"></p> <h3>62% of consumers will stick to premium if prices rise post-Brexit</h3> <p>New findings from Centre for Retail Research and Rakuten Marketing suggest that consumers have differing views of how the referendum result will affect prices in the UK.</p> <p>A survey of 1000 consumers across the UK found that, over the next six months, 37% of people are sure they will be better off, while 40% think they will be worse off.</p> <p>Regardless, the survey also found that shoppers will not stop purchasing premium products if prices have to rise as a result of Brexit. If faced with a price increase of up to 10%, only 6% of Brits claim they would refuse to buy the item, while 62% would buy the premium brand anyway.</p> <p>There does seem to be a tipping point, however, with a 15% price increase expected to make 21% of shoppers switch to a cheaper brand.</p> <h3>UK companies unprepared for business pitching</h3> <p>Research from <a href="http://buffalo7.co.uk/uk-companies-are-not-prepared-for-pitching/" target="_blank">Buffalo7</a> has found that the majority of UK companies are not properly prepared to win new business pitches.</p> <p>From a survey of industry professionals, 61% of respondents said their companies did not employ any staff with slide-deck design expertise. In contrast, 60% wished their companies did have such expertise in-house, with 62% believing it would help their companies to win more pitches. </p> <p>Despite this recognition, a whopping 75% of respondents said that that their companies do not provide any formal training for delivering pitches.</p> <p>Perhaps unsurprisingly, the survey also found that 76% of companies have pitched for business in the last 12 months, but that 54% are losing half or more of the pitches they contest.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/5159/Buffalo7.jpg" alt="" width="721" height="458"></p> <h3>YouTube is number one for consumer positivity</h3> <p>According to a new study from Trinity McQueen, YouTube tops the list of media brands that people feel the most positively about.</p> <p>In a survey of ‘unbound consumers’ - people who reject scheduled media for on-demand services -  21% cited that they feel positively about YouTube, followed by 20% feeling positive towards the BBC and 16% about Netflix. </p> <p>New content appears to be a key factor in a media brand’s popularity, with 46% of unbound audiences most likely to believe YouTube always has new content, while 35% saying the same about the BBC.</p> <p>Lastly, 41% of unbound audiences feel that Facebook offers the most personalised experience, while 41% thinks YouTube offers the best overall online experience.</p> <h3>Car brands see Instagram follower growth of 20% in two months</h3> <p>A new study by <a href="https://www.quintly.com/blog/2017/03/the-10-most-liked-uk-brands-on-instagram/" target="_blank">Quintly</a> has revealed that five out of the top ten most-liked UK brands on Instagram are car manufacturers. </p> <p>What’s more, they all had a follower growth of at least 20% in the period of October to December 2016.</p> <p>Other analysis shows that Jaguar had the most successful post in terms of the number of likes, with a post showing the model F-Type garnering over 110,000 likes. </p> <p>This is just one example of the popularity of luxury brands on Instagram, which is also reflected by the success of other big brands like Burberry and Rolls Royce.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/5154/Jaguar.JPG" alt="" width="760" height="489"></p> <h3>Mobile accounts for more than 60% of digital minutes in global markets</h3> <p>According comScore’s <a href="http://www.comscore.com/Insights/Presentations-and-Whitepapers/2017/Mobiles-Hierarchy-of-Needs?cs_edgescape_cc=GB" target="_blank">Mobile Hierarchy of Needs</a> report, mobile devices now account for a majority of consumers' digital minutes, with most of that time spent in apps.</p> <p>The growing share of consumer time claimed by mobile devices accounted for more than 60% of all digital minutes in nine major markets, rising to 91% in the case of Indonesia.</p> <p>Apps represented more than 80% of mobile minutes in all markets studied, rising to 99% in the case of China.</p> <p>The top apps are no surprise, with WhatsApp, Facebook Messenger, <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/67490-10-things-you-didn-t-know-about-wechat/">WeChat</a>, QQ Instant Messenger and Line showing the popularity of messaging apps</p> <h3>63% of consumers believe the media needs more regulation</h3> <p>A new report by Network Research shows that public trust in the reliability of media information has declined significantly in the last 12 months, with 63% of people now believing that media outlets need more regulation.</p> <p>In a survey of 1,000 UK adults, the study also found that 39.5% of people feel the government has significant influence on the media agenda, while 32% feel that businesses do.</p> <p>Almost half of the public are suspicious they may have seen or read fake news recently, with 75% subsequently trusting publications to a lesser extent. 83% of people also believe there should be greater penalties for reporting fabricated news.</p> tag:econsultancy.com,2008:BlogPost/68868 2017-03-07T14:14:00+00:00 2017-03-07T14:14:00+00:00 Facebook scales back on chatbots: What does it mean for brands? Nikki Gilliland <p>Here’s a bit more on the story, as well as few examples of the latest brand bots to appear.</p> <h3>What went wrong?</h3> <p>A number of businesses jumped on board the chatbot bandwagon as soon as the system was announced last year. In July, Facebook reported that there were 11,000 chatbots live on Messenger, with this figure expanding to a whopping 30,000 by September 2016.</p> <p>The idea was great in theory. Essentially, a chatbot would be able replace human interaction, with bots replying to customer service queries in ‘conversation’ with users online. However, with chatbots failing to correctly respond to the majority of queries, it soon became clear that the technology was not yet sophisticated enough to have anything resembling a genuine conversation.</p> <h3>How has Facebook responded?</h3> <p>Instead of continuing its large-scale development of chatbot technology, Facebook will instead focus on getting its system to answer a limited set of questions correctly. It recently announced a selection of new developer features, including a ‘persistent menu function’, which will display all of the bot’s functions up-front and in a menu-format. </p> <p>This basically means that the user experience will become akin to browsing on a website – merely clicking on a series of options – instead of taking the form of a two-way conversation. Of course, though this will mean that users won’t be frustrated by a chatbot's inability to respond correctly – it could lead to disappointment in the technology as a whole.</p> <p>I’ve recently <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/68636-pizza-express-channel-4-and-tfl-three-examples-of-brand-chatbots/" target="_blank">reviewed quite a few chatbots</a>, and while there’s been a few interesting examples, many have indeed failed to ignite much excitement or interest. What’s more, the ones that <em>have</em> failed appear to be the most basic or boring in terms of functionality, merely providing the user with a clickable menu instead of any real conversation.</p> <h3>Will brands continue to invest?</h3> <p>That being said, not all examples can be tarred with the same brush. As most bots are developed by third-party agencies, some are certainly more impressive than others.</p> <p>I recently came across PG Tips’ Monkey chatbot – created by <a href="https://www.ubisend.com/case-studies/unilever" target="_blank">Ubisend</a> as part of the brand’s partnership with Comic Relief. In terms of user interaction it’s one of the best I’ve used, appearing to understand and successfully respond to my basic questions. Of course, the limitations of Facebook's bot technology still remain – Monkey will ask you to revert to tea if you stray too far from the core topic.</p> <p>However, with a decent level of interaction, it effectively serves its purpose by enhancing awareness as well as encouraging users to donate to the charity.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/4377/Monkey_3.JPG" alt="" width="780" height="713"></p> <p>Other brands have found greater levels of success by sticking to a basic and more functional formula. Take Pizza Express, for example, which <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/68800-pizza-express-launches-booking-chatbot-is-it-any-good/">recently launched a chatbot</a> with the sole purpose of allowing users to book a table via Messenger. Similarly, KLM has recently introduced a new bot that allows users to ask for directions by sending emojis.</p> <p>On the other end of the spectrum, <a href="https://www.theguardian.com/technology/2017/mar/06/chatbot-donotpay-refugees-claim-asylum-legal-aid">DoNotPay is a chatbot with a much more worthwhile purpose</a>, helping to determine whether refugees are eligible for asylum protection under international law before helping them to fill in the relevant forms. Described as the 'world's first robot lawyer', it is one of the first examples of chatbot technology being developed for social good.</p> <p>These examples, while still quite limited in terms of what they can do, provide users with something of real value. Whether it's a reserved table or free legal advice - they can offer more than the chance to just capture user data.</p> <h3>In conclusion...</h3> <p>While Facebook’s decision to scale back on the technology could result in many brands abandoning chatbot attempts – and indeed prevent them from experimenting in future - this is not necessarily a bad thing.</p> <p>In fact, it could mean a filtering out of poor quality chatbots – perhaps those that have been created for the purposes of short-term hype – resulting in a greater user experience overall.</p> <p><em><strong>Related reading:</strong></em></p> <ul> <li><em><a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/68732-what-makes-a-good-chatbot-ux/" target="_blank">What makes a good chatbot UX?</a></em></li> <li><em><a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/68805-are-brands-failing-to-properly-promote-their-new-chatbots/" target="_blank">Are brands failing to properly promote their new chatbots?</a></em></li> <li><em><a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/68208-chatbots-are-they-better-without-the-chat/" target="_blank">Chatbots: Are they better without the chat?</a></em></li> </ul> tag:econsultancy.com,2008:BlogPost/68855 2017-03-01T14:20:00+00:00 2017-03-01T14:20:00+00:00 Mobile app usage grows by 28%: Where are users spending their time? Nikki Gilliland <p>But what kind of apps are they using exactly? Here are a few of the most interesting charts from Flurry’s report, along with a bit of insight into the findings. </p> <p>First, a bit of housekeeping. <a href="http://flurrymobile.tumblr.com/post/155761509355/on-their-tenth-anniversary-mobile-apps-start">The report</a> draws on Flurry’s global footprint, which includes 940,000 applications, across 2.1bn devices, in 10bn sessions a day.</p> <h3>Social and messaging apps reign supreme</h3> <p>In 2016, UK mobile users continued their rapid uptake of social media messaging apps, with usage in this category increasing by 46%. Globally, usage also increased by 44%, helping mobile to achieve a session growth of 69% year-on-year.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/4275/UK_usage.png" alt="" width="780" height="434"></p> <p>So why are we using messaging apps even more than we used to? Flurry suggests that the ‘communitainment’ trend could be a factor – an awful term used to describe the act of sharing user-generated content on social media. </p> <p>As a result of this high usage, time spent in other apps – such as news or gaming – has naturally declined. Similarly, with a lot of messaging apps updating their range of emojis and adding sticker features, use of standalone personalisation apps has declined 46%. </p> <p>Retale recently reported that <a href="http://www.adweek.com/digital/chat-bots-are-winning-over-social-media-users-report/" target="_blank">58% of millennials</a> have interacted with a <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/68046-five-pioneering-examples-of-how-brands-are-using-chatbots/" target="_blank">chatbot</a> on social media in the past year, meaning AI could have also contributed to the rise of messaging apps. That being said, it’s unclear whether this percentage is due to brands capturing user’s attention or merely reaching people in the channels they already spend time in.</p> <h3>Daily habits linked to rise</h3> <p>Flurry found that the average mobile user spends around five hours a day on their smartphones, of which two hours are designated to social or messaging apps. </p> <p>Brits in particular are most active first thing in the morning as well as post-work, peaking at around 4pm and continuing until 10pm. This appears to be because, while other activities like watching television remain popular, many users are using more than one connected device at a time.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/4274/Daily_habits.png" alt="" width="780" height="436"></p> <p>In fact, a recent <a href="https://www.consumerbarometer.com/en/graph-builder/?question=M9&amp;filter=country:united_kingdom" target="_blank">study by Google</a> shows that 65% of Brits also use a smartphone when watching television, once again highlighting the phenomenon known as second screening.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/4273/Google_Devices.jpg" alt="" width="780" height="301"></p> <p>Meanwhile, real-time events have also helped to drive usage of mobile apps, such as sporting events like the Super Bowl. In Europe, app sessions for the sports category increased by a whopping 90% last year - a percentage largely put down to a jam-packed summer of sport including Wimbledon, the Euros and the Olympics.</p> <h3>Medium phones rivalling phablets in Europe</h3> <p>While Flurry’s previous report suggested that phablets (i.e. devices with screens between 5” and 6.9”) are dominating globally, it appears Europeans are still keeping hold of medium-sized devices, with the latter seeing a 47% market share in the UK.</p> <p>That being said, it’s been suggested that Europe will soon catch up, with phablet adoption set to grow to the point of eliminating small phones entirely. This is unsurprising, especially considering the global rise in shopping and utility apps, with many consumers turning to mobile devices for a multitude of practical purposes as well as entertainment.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/4272/Phablets.png" alt="" width="780" height="436"></p> <p>For lots more information on this topic, be sure to check out Econsultancy’s <a href="https://econsultancy.com/reports/topics/mobile/" target="_blank">mobile-related research</a>.</p> tag:econsultancy.com,2008:BlogPost/68834 2017-02-24T13:51:16+00:00 2017-02-24T13:51:16+00:00 All the digital news stories you missed this week Nikki Gilliland <h3>Instagram lets you upload multiple photos and videos at once</h3> <p>Instagram has introduced a new carousel feature so that users can upload multiple photos and videos in a single post.</p> <p>It’s based on the notion that it’s difficult to choose just one photo from an experience, so now users can choose to include up to 10 photos or videos, which followers can swipe through to view.</p> <blockquote class="twitter-tweet"> <p lang="en" dir="ltr">Surprise! Now you can share up to 10 photos and videos in one Instagram post! <a href="https://t.co/OpBAUxcmJ4">https://t.co/OpBAUxcmJ4</a> <a href="https://t.co/U2u0OmBJln">pic.twitter.com/U2u0OmBJln</a></p> — Instagram (@instagram) <a href="https://twitter.com/instagram/status/834433357366833152">February 22, 2017</a> </blockquote> <h3>Republicans release report detailing A/B testing for Trump campaign</h3> <p>Apparently, Donald Trump’s website generated more online revenue per visitor when it used pictures of Trump giving two thumbs up than any other photo.</p> <p>This is just one snippet of information from the RNC Testing Booklet – a report that details information about the A/B testing undertaken by the Republican’s digital team throughout Trump’s campaign. You can read the <a href="https://www.scribd.com/document/336800205/RNC-Testing-Booklet">full report here</a>.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/4135/Trump.JPG" alt="" width="400" height="648"></p> <h3>WhatsApp introduces ‘Status’ feature</h3> <p>WhatsApp has introduced ‘Status’ – a new feature that allows users to share disappearing photos and videos. It enables users to send contacts photos, GIFs or videos overlaid with drawings, emojis or captions, before the content will disappear after 24 hours.</p> <p>So, what will this mean for Snapchat? Read more about that <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/68830-will-snapchat-suffer-from-whatsapp-s-new-status-feature/" target="_blank">here</a>.</p> <h3>Snap starts selling spectacles online</h3> <p>So far, Snap’s video-recording glasses have only been available from special vending machines in surprise locations and from an NYC pop-up. Now, the brand has begun selling them online to US consumers for the sum of $129.99.</p> <p>The move comes ahead of the brand’s March IPO, where the company is seeking a valuation of up to $22bn.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/4134/Spectacles.JPG" alt="" width="680" height="412"></p> <h3>Apple buys iCloud.net domain</h3> <p>Apple has taken ownership of iCloud.net – a domain formerly associated with a small-scale Asian social network – in a bid to eliminate market confusion over its cloud software services. Apple has refused to comment on the deal, meaning the financial details (and what it plans to do with the domain) remain unknown.</p> <h3>Uber writes to users trying to delete their accounts  </h3> <p>Uber has come under fire once again, this time for allegations made by a former employee about sexual harassment and discrimination within the company. The news has come less than a month after the #DeleteUber campaign, following the firm’s airport price surging controversy.</p> <p>With users once again trying to delete their accounts, Uber has responded by sending out a formal letter in response, explaining its position on Susan Fowler’s allegations (see below).</p> <blockquote class="twitter-tweet"> <p lang="und" dir="ltr"><a href="https://twitter.com/Bro_Pair">@Bro_Pair</a> <a href="https://twitter.com/Uber">@Uber</a> <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/deleteuber?src=hash">#deleteuber</a> <a href="https://t.co/QAWOX87Wtj">pic.twitter.com/QAWOX87Wtj</a></p> — Mr. To Damn Good (@FamousCeleb) <a href="https://twitter.com/FamousCeleb/status/834567373214539776">February 23, 2017</a> </blockquote> <h3>Facebook Messenger users can now chat to Christian Grey </h3> <p>On the back of the release of the <em>Fifty Shades Darker</em> movie<em>,</em> PersonaBots.com has created a Christian Grey character for Facebook Messenger. Kudos to the person who raised <em>that</em> mid-meeting.</p> <p>Bringing fans’ fantasies to life (well, sort of) the bot’s raunchy chat culminates in talk of the famous Red Room. As you might expect, it’s decidedly NSFW, so the below screenshot is all you’re getting.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/4133/Christian_Grey_chatbot_2.JPG" alt="" width="501" height="611"></p> tag:econsultancy.com,2008:BlogPost/68832 2017-02-24T10:05:00+00:00 2017-02-24T10:05:00+00:00 10 staggering digital marketing stats we've seen this week Nikki Gilliland <p>Please note, we've linked to all original studies where possible. Unfortunately not all of these studies are published online, they often come to us as press releases.</p> <h3>60% of millennials have used chatbots</h3> <p>A new study by Retale has delved into how UK millennials feel about chatbots.</p> <p>From a survey of over 500 consumers aged 18 to 34, nearly 60% of respondents were found to have used a chatbot in the past. Out of the percentage of people that had not, 53% said they were still interested in trying them. </p> <p>Interestingly, <a href="https://econsultancy.com/admin/blog_posts/68805-are-brands-failing-to-promote-chatbots/" target="_blank">branded chatbots</a> appear to be growing in popularity, with 71% of millennials saying they’d be happy to try a chatbot from a consumer brand. Lastly, 86% of respondents agreed that brands should use chatbots to promote deals, discounts and offers. </p> <p><a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/68800-pizza-express-launches-booking-chatbot-is-it-any-good/" target="_blank"><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/4128/Pizza_Express_5.JPG" alt="" width="750" height="678"></a></p> <h3>Retailers increasing investment in store technology</h3> <p>The <a href="http://now.jda.com/CEO2017.html" target="_blank">latest report</a> from JDA/PWC has found that 69% of CEOs plan to increase investment in digital technologies to improve the in-store customer experience. </p> <p>76% of CEOs have or are planning to invest in personalised mobile ‘push offers’ and beacons, while 79% are also investing or planning to invest in smart mobile devices for staff in stores. Despite this, 52% of respondents have not yet defined or started implementing <a href="https://econsultancy.com/training/digital-transformation/">a digital transformation strategy</a>. </p> <h3>68% of British retailers have no Brexit plans in place</h3> <p>According to new research from Global-e, 68% of retailers have yet to start planning for Brexit, despite 51% also saying that the vote to leave the EU has already impacted UK sales. The study, which involved a survey of 250 top British retailers, also found that 32% of those selling internationally have seen an increase in online orders from outside the UK. </p> <p>Additionally, 46% of UK retailers were found to be in favour of a soft Brexit, while 36% agreed that a hard Brexit - with no access to the single market - would be better for UK retailers.</p> <h3>Ad blocking levels stabilise</h3> <p>According to the Internet Advertising Bureau's UK <a href="https://iabuk.net/about/press/archive/iab-uk-reveals-latest-ad-blocking-behaviour" target="_blank">Ad Blocking Report</a>, the proportion of British adults online currently using ad blocking software has remained at around 22% for the last year.</p> <p>Despite a predicted rise in ad blocking, this has failed to materialise, perhaps due to many publishers working hard to promote a value exchange.</p> <p>24% of people cited not being able to access online content as the biggest reason for switching off their ad blocker - a figure up from 16% a year ago. Meanwhile, 24% said that it is because they have since switched to a new device.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/4122/ad_blocking.png" alt="" width="750" height="453"></p> <h3>Travel brands expected to benefit from Oscar hype</h3> <p>Data from Lastminute.com suggests that travel brands have seen an increase in search interest on the back of this year’s Oscar nominations. Searches for flights to Los Angeles shot up by 21% on the day of La La Land’s release. Meanwhile, Martin Scorsese’s Silence prompted an even bigger surge, with searches for flights to Japan up 82% from the week before, and increasing a further 46% in the subsequent two days.</p> <p>Though it hasn’t been nominated for any Academy Awards, Brit flick Eddie the Eagle also prompted greater interest in ski holidays, with on-site searches jumping 10% after its release.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/4123/Lastminute.JPG" alt="" width="750" height="424"></p> <h3>56% of CRM managers lack firm objectives</h3> <p>In a survey of 500 leading CRM managers, <a href="http://news.wiraya.com/news/crm-managers-dont-believe-theyre-generating-revenue-222319">Wiraya found that CRM</a> is perceived as a key business driver for over 30% of businesses. Despite this fact, it seems many still lack the data and strategy to support their goals and create profitability.</p> <p>While 91% of businesses are currently measuring aspects of their CRM work, 56% do not have firm objectives in place. What’s more, just 17% say that their CRM work is clearly contributing to the company’s overall revenue. This proves that major improvements still need to be made, as just 31% currently consider themselves ‘ambitious’ in terms of CRM maturity.</p> <h3>One in six UK shoppers have switched supermarkets in the past year</h3> <p>In light of Aldi becoming the nation’s fifth largest supermarket, <a href="http://www.tccglobal.com/en/blog/article/uk-shopper-loyalty-study">TCC Global has undertaken a study</a> on the state of consumer loyalty to grocery stores. It found that 32% of UK discount shoppers and 16% of all shoppers have switched their main grocery store in the last 12 months. Meanwhile, 39% of shoppers said that it wouldn’t matter to them if their usual grocery store closed.</p> <p>The research also found that growing convenience is making it even easier to switch between retailers, with shoppers having an average of 11 ‘reachable’, 10 ‘easily reachable’ and five ‘very easily reachable' stores.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/4124/Aldi.jpg" alt="" width="720" height="480"></p> <h3>UK online retail sales grow 12% year on year in January</h3> <p>The latest figures from <a href="https://www.imrg.org/data-and-reports/imrg-capgemini-sales-indexes/" target="_blank">IMRG Capgemini</a> has revealed that UK online retail sales were up 12% year-on-year in the first month of 2017, with retailers seeing the highest average January spend since 2010. The average basket value was recorded as £85 in January 2017, up from £79 a year earlier. </p> <p>In terms of sectors, growth for gifts reached an eight-year high, with an increase of 62% year-on-year. Meanwhile, electricals were down 9%, falling for the second month in a row.</p> <h3>Consumers struggle to identify British brands</h3> <p>A recent <a href="https://www.spreadco.com/blog/uk-baffled-by-the-origins-of-their-favourite-brands">poll by Spread Co</a> has found that the majority of consumers are baffled by the origins of their favourite brands. 50% of consumers believe Tetley Tea to be British, when it is in fact owned by a foreign company. Similarly, 42% think the same about Branston Pickle and 37% about HP Sauce, when they are actually Indian and Japanese.</p> <p>The survey also found that 61% of UK adults don’t know that The Body Shop is part of L’oreal, while 19% think Tesco is the biggest company in Britain (even though it only represents 0.84% of the market share).</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/4127/body_shop.jpg" alt="" width="650" height="490"></p> <h3>Mulberry and Burberry are the most searched-for brands during LFW</h3> <p>Captify has revealed that the top three searched for designers during London Fashion Week were Mulberry, Burberry and JW Anderson. Other designers saw online searches go through the roof, with Ryan Lo experiencing a jump of 2,000% over the week, followed by surges for Topshop Unique and Sadie Williams.</p> <p>In terms of the most searched-for items, designer trainers rose by 60%, followed by minimalist clothing and 90’s style, which both rose 20%.</p> tag:econsultancy.com,2008:BlogPost/68830 2017-02-22T12:30:00+00:00 2017-02-22T12:30:00+00:00 Will Snapchat suffer from WhatsApp’s new ‘Status’ feature? Nikki Gilliland <p>It’s just announced the introduction of disappearing photos and videos into its messaging app, WhatsApp. Which, yes, is a feature that is pretty much identical to Snapchat Stories.</p> <p>So, what will this mean for users of both? And what about brands? Here’s a bit more on the story.</p> <h3>What is the ‘Status’ feature?</h3> <p>WhatsApp has always provided users with the option of having a ‘status’. It’s the little phrase beside a person’s name that says ‘at work’, ‘busy’ or ‘at the gym’.</p> <p>In fact, the app was originally built around this very idea, i.e. that you could let your friends or family know what you were currently up to. As the app evolved, it became one of the most under-used and forgotten about elements.</p> <p>Now, ‘status’ is being reintroduced in a big way.</p> <p>The all-new feature will let users share photos, GIFs or videos overlaid with drawings, emojis or captions. This content will be end-to-end encrypted, meaning that no outside party will be able to view it, and it will last for 24 hours before disappearing entirely.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/4096/whatsapp.JPG" alt="" width="250" height="493"></p> <h3>Will it change user behaviour?</h3> <p>While Instagram also introduced this feature last year, Instagram Stories did not necessarily make much of a difference or impact when it comes to how users behave on the platform.</p> <p>Instagram can largely be a passive user experience – you can simply use it to view other people’s content if you wish. On the other hand, WhatsApp has always been inherently active. To use it, you have to be engaged in chat, or else there’s not much point. With Status, WhatsApp users will now be able to do both.</p> <h3>Will brands get involved?</h3> <p>While some brands have already been using <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/68695-how-brands-are-using-whatsapp-for-marketing/" target="_blank">WhatsApp for marketing purposes</a> - mainly to enable faster and more direct customer service - the new feature could open up a whole new realm of advertising opportunities.</p> <p>Despite WhatsApp being against blatant brand advertising in the past, the opportunity to monetise could prove irresistible. There have been suggestions that it could start to insert full-screen ads in-between Statuses, following the example of both Snapchat and Instagram.</p> <p>Similarly, brands could also make use of custom-made filters or emojis, using this to create a less obtrusive presence <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/67529-the-rise-of-dark-social-everything-you-need-to-know/">within dark social</a>.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/4097/Whatsapp_2.JPG" alt="" width="250" height="492"></p> <h3>Will Snapchat suffer?</h3> <p>There’s no guarantee that the Status feature will even take off for WhatsApp, but with 1.2bn monthly users and 60bn messages being sent each day, I doubt it’s all that worried. After all, WhatsApp will not fundamentally change - it will retain its core messaging feature - but it will simultaneously be able to take (or attempt to take) a slice of Snapchat's pie.</p> <p>Snapchat, on the other hand, might be a little concerned. Especially considering that stats from its latest <a href="https://techcrunch.com/2017/02/02/slowchat/" target="_blank">IPO filing</a> showed that the platform’s growth slowed 82% after Instagram Stories launched. If a similar thing happens on the back of Status, it could further hinder the platform’s global growth and revenue opportunities.</p>