Marketers must harness the power of social media: Study



    Multi-country study reveals huge growth potential for companies to
    leverage

    TORONTO, Feb. 28 /CNW/ - Senior marketing executives in Canada, France,
the United Kingdom and the United States say that the use of social media for
corporate, brand and product marketing is not a passing fad, according to
research sponsored by TNS Media Intelligence/Cymfony.
    In the first study of its kind, 71 senior marketers from global blue
chips including Sony, Diageo, GlaxoSmithKline and Hewlett Packard shared their
views on the untapped power of social media in a telephone survey conducted
last fall.
    Nearly half of those interviewed believe that leveraging social media Web
sites, such as Facebook, MySpace and blogs, is a vital component of corporate
communications that should be monitored at the executive level and allocated
significant resources.
    "Most marketers think that social media is another channel that companies
can use to their advantage, but the reality is that most companies are taking
a very cautious approach," said Michael Ennamorato, senior vice-president of
TNS Canadian Facts, whose firm conducted 11 interviews with Canadian marketing
executives for the study.
    Leading barriers for marketers to harness social media include a lack of
senior management commitment and best practices, followed by the absence of
controls, standardization, time and resources.
    Jim Nail, chief strategy and marketing officer of TNS Media
Intelligence/Cymfony points out that discussions about brands are already
taking place on-line and that the influence of consumer-generated content will
only increase in the future.
    "If marketers use social media in the right way, they can build brand
awareness, support product launches, increase customer loyalty and give
businesses never-before-seen levels of consumer insight. Surprisingly,
however, our study shows that many business executives are still new to social
media, which points to a large gap between attitudes and action that must be
addressed," Nail said.
    For a copy of the full research report, please visit
www.SocialMediaInBusiness.com. At this site, one may register to attend a
complimentary webinar about the study's key findings. The webinar is being
held today at 1 pm Eastern Time. The event will be recorded and archived on
the site for later viewing.

    About the research

    In Autumn 2007, TNS Media Intelligence/Cymfony conducted a telephone
survey entitled, Harnessing Influence: how savvy brands are unleashing the new
power of blogs and other social media. TNS Media Intelligence/Cymfony polled
70+ senior marketers in Canada, France, the United Kingdom and the United
States about their experiences incorporating all types of social media tools
in their marketing strategies. Interviews with 11 Canadian marketing
executives were conducted between October 17 and 26, 2007 by TNS Canadian
Facts (www.tns-cf.com), one of Canada's most prestigious full-service
marketing, opinion and social research organizations.

    About TNS Media Intelligence/Cymfony

    TNS Media Intelligence/Cymfony tells brands and companies what people are
saying about them - whether the people are bloggers, traditional journalists
or even influential consumers. We are an innovator in the integration of
social and traditional media, offering access to the greatest breadth of
content sources and analytical expertise.
    http://www.cymfony.com/

    About TNS

    TNS is a global market insight and information group.
    We are the world's foremost provider of custom research and analysis,
combining in-depth industry sector understanding with world-class expertise in
the areas of Retail and Shopper Insights, Stakeholder Management, New Product
Development, and Brand and Communications. We are a major supplier of consumer
panel, media intelligence and Internet, TV and radio audience measurement
services.
    TNS is the sixth sense of business.
    http://www.tnsglobal.com/




For further information:

For further information: Media Contacts: Michael Ennamorato, Senior
Vice-President, Tel: (416) 924-5751 x215, e-mail:
michael.ennamorato@tns-global.com; David Stark, Vice President, Public
Affairs, Tel: (416) 924-5751 x238, e-mail: david.stark@tns-global.com

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