Commentary

Four Out of Ten Canadians Recommend Brands on Social Media

More and more Canadians are using social media to recommend brands to their friends, according to a new survey of 2,858 Canucks conducted by Colloquy, the research arm of LoyaltyOne, which specializes in loyalty and marketing programs, in June of this year; given our strong similarities, it seems safe to assume the existence of a similar trend in the U.S. population.

Colloquy found that the proportion of Canadian respondents who said they use social media to make brand recs rose from 28% in 2011 to 38% in 2013. Meanwhile 55% of the general population believes social networks are an appropriate way for brands to interact with customers -- rising to 74% among young adults ages 18-25.

However, Colloquy also found that the proportion of Canadians who could be described as “word of mouth champions” -- meaning people who are especially loyal to, engaged with, and willing to recommend brands -- actually declined from 31% to 24% over the same period. It’s not quite clear what’s behind this drop-off, but I would speculate that perhaps people are simply becoming less loyal to specific brands, and also more skeptical about the benefits of being a brand enthusiast (after all, if you’re not rewarded for touting a brand to your friends on social media, e.g. with free samples or special offers, then what’s the point?).

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Interestingly Canadians don’t seem to be nearly as keen on social media as an e-commerce platform. Back in January of this year, PricewaterhouseCooper’s “2013 Global Multi-Channel Retail Survey” for Canada found that, while 42% of 1,333 Canadians surveyed said they use social media at least once a day, and another 17% use it at least once a week, only about 7% said they use social media to shop.

1 comment about "Four Out of Ten Canadians Recommend Brands on Social Media".
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  1. Steven Threndyle from media tent, November 15, 2013 at 5:01 p.m.

    Canadians have always been early adopters of social media; in fact, I think there was a time when there were more Canadian FB users than Americans - in absolute numbers. The reasons for this are easy to explain: a) the vast distances and horribly expensive domestic airfares make 'connection' a challenge b) Canada has enjoyed excellent penetration by broadband companies (cable TV, is a Canadian invention, I believe). I would like to know what we talk about when we are talking about 'recommending' brands. I see that this poll was run by Loyalty.ca - I believe that CDNs are the largest users of loyalty cards in the world - we need to be, consumer goods are absurdly expensive compared to the United States. WalMart and Costco have KO'd many Canadian retailers. I also think that from a marketing perspective, Canadians are far more savvy about brands 'selling' to them. You have to give stuff away if you want to engage in Canada - whether it's points, a discount, or some other incentive (and... contests aren't usually enough). As for using social media to shop -- haha, can you do that? We don't have a NexTag or other deal aggregator like you find in the States - economies of scale and all of that...

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