Social Media Business Use in Emerging Markets Globally
Social media use for businesses has become an increasingly important tool for companies to engage their current and potential customers into: getting to know the company, buying products or becoming a customer. The surprising part of it is that the countries in which companies utilize social media the most are not located in Europe or North America, but in Asia and Latin America.
A recent research performed by KPMG with approximately 1,800 managers and 2,000 employees in 10 major markets has pointed out that companies in countries like China, India and Brazil are on average using more social media than companies in the U.K., Australia, Germany and Canada. To be more precise, the percentage of companies using social media in these 10 markets is:
- China: 82%
- USA: 71%
- India: 70%
- Brazil: 68%
- Canada: 51%
- UK: 48%
- Germany: 42%
- Sweden: 41%
- Australia: 41%
- Japan: 27%
It’s interesting to note the large presence of emerging economic markets among the top countries on the list, in which theoretically, the companies are not as established and developed as their counterparts in the so-called developed countries. An explanation for this could be the fact that companies in emerging markets have a smaller budget for marketing and have realized that social media is an effective low-cost tool to market their products and their brand.
In different countries social media usage varies not only among companies, but also among consumers. Generally speaking, users from Western Europe, the U.S.A. and Canada create less social media content than users from Brazil, Mexico, India and China. As an example, over 75% of social media users of metropolitan cities in China and in India post new content on blogs, Twitter, Facebook or any other social networks at least once a month, while in the U.S.A. the percentage of users that do the same is below 40%.
This difference might be due to the fact that social networks have been a part of Western Europeans and North American’s life for longer, which means they tend to make a more rational and restrained use of it, only posting when something relatively important happens, while users from emerging markets have had contact with these tools for less time and are more excited to post.
That does not mean it’s harder to market in developed markets; it just means that the markets’ particularities should be taken into account when an international brand is designing their social media marketing strategy. Customizing your approach according to the market is a great strategy in order to better reach your target audience.