DAC Group

DAC Group

November 08, 2010 10:05 ET

DAC Group: North America's Leading Digital Agency Releases Local Search Study Results

Mobile & Social Media Not Ready for Prime Time

NEW YORK, NEW YORK--(Marketwire - Nov. 8, 2010) - According to the second wave of DAC Group's North American Search Landscape study, 39% of American consumers use search engines first when looking for business information during the course of making a purchase. After that, they move onto a variety of local, print and online sources. Mobile and social media are not yet primary sources of media when consumers are looking for business information when making a purchase. They do become strategic in the amplification of other online and offline media sources.

The reality of smart phone ownership in the United States has been estimated by the Nielsen Company to be approximately 33% by the end of 2010. Smartphone usage may have increased from 21% at the end of last year, but the Nielsen Company estimates that it won't reach half the population until the end of 2011. This smart phone demographic tends to represent affluent business people who are a sought after target for advertisers, but it does not represent the average consumer. Mobile media provides excellent local geo-targeted and point of purchase advertising as well as providing invaluable support when consumers are searching for a particular business. It is not a primary vehicle for driving consumer sales.

Social media on the other hand tends to have a wider demographic appeal due to its wide availability and low cost of participation. Everyone from teens to grandparents has at one time or another used social media. 61% of consumers aged thirty to forty-nine have used social media according to the current Pew Internet & American Life Project study. Social media even extends to those consumers between the ages of 50 to 64 where 47% of them reported to using social media. Social media usage tends to vary depending on life stage and community influence. It is by its very definition social. From a marketing perspective, it gives businesses the opportunity to create new customer relationships by letting them voice their opinions and concerns as well as having them involved in the new product development cycle. This two way conversation provides new experiences that will attract non-traditional customers. Sales can be created as a result of these social media campaigns, but a social media strategy is nuanced and relational. Campaigns must engender trust and promote authenticity thereby creating advocates. Businesses should not expect social media to create sales in a traditional manner and rely on it as a quick means of generating sales.

The DAC Group study of 5,500 North Americans tracks, assesses and analyzes consumer online and offline search habits when looking for business information in the course of making a purchase. The study observed that instead of flocking to mobile and social media, consumers have adopted specific search patterns that differ by vertical, locality and demographic profile. Consequently, marketers need to ensure that they take into consideration the category dynamics and the geographic footprint of the business so that appropriate business targets can be set. Mobile and social media are strategic tools that can produce very real marketing results in terms of increased leads or increased market share. The results really depend on the method of execution combined with appropriate expectations. Mobile and social will be vital in the future of search marketing, but are not yet ready to be the star attraction. More details of this study will be released to DAC Group clients and on the company's website.

ABOUT DAC GROUP

Founded in 1972, DAC Group (www.dacgroup.com) is one of North America's leading digital agencies with offices in Rochester, Louisville, New York, Cleveland, Toronto, Montreal, Calgary, and Vancouver. DAC Group combines consumer insight, proprietary technology and media expertise to create innovative marketing and lead generation solutions. A leader in developing ROI based strategies, DAC Group drives business and revenue via local, regional and national programs integrating a broad range of online and offline channels including search engines (SEM/SEO), directories, social and mobile media. The agency is owned by its management.

Contact Information

  • Media Contact:
    DAC Group
    Sandy Scopa
    Research and Marketing Director
    1 800 361-4322 ext 6315
    sscopa@dacgroup.com