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Peers Have Influence Over Consumers, Celebrities Don't




BENTONVILLE, Ark., March 29, 2016 – Collective Bias, a leader in shopper-focused influencer marketing, today published results of a large-scale national survey investigating how U.S. consumers’ online behaviors impact in-store purchase decisions. The survey, fielded to nearly 14,000 adults in early March, found that 30 percent of consumers are more likely to purchase a product endorsed by a non-celebrity blogger than a celebrity. Of that number, 70 percent of 18 to 34 year-olds had the highest preference for “peer” endorsement.


Only three percent of consumers would consider buying a product in-store if it was endorsed by a celebrity, but celebrity testimonials were just one of the traditional advertising vehicles to rank low among respondents. Those surveyed cited TV (7.4 percent), print (4.7 percent) and digital (4.5 percent) advertisements as the least influential forms of communication when shopping for products in-store. The results point to a growing ineffectiveness of traditional advertising and the need for brands to embrace alternative forms of marketing to drive sales.


Only 3% of consumers would consider buying a product in-store if it was endorsed by a celebrity

The recent Collective Bias survey also investigated other trends in digital and social behaviors and in-store shopping. Highlights include:


     •  Consumers are consulting blogs and social media on their mobile devices prior to shopping. Nearly 60 percent of survey respondents have taken a blog review or social media post viewed on a smartphone or tablet into consideration while shopping in-store.  


     •  Men are 2x more influenced by blog reviews than women. One in five men (18.3 percent) have had blog reviews influence in-store purchases, compared to only one in 10 women (9.2 percent) who have done the same.


     •  Men and women differ in which product categories they research online. U.S. male consumers (34.4 percent) have purchased consumer electronics in-store about twice as often as women (15.4 percent) as a result of reading a blog review or social media post.


     •  Twitter is not used first or most often by consumers researching products online. Only two percent of respondents checked Twitter first when researching products, and less than 2 percent said Twitter had the most influence on their decision to complete an in-store purchase.


60% of respondents have taken blog or social media posts into consideration while shopping

     •  But, Facebook and YouTube are the most persuasive channels. About 19 percent of consumers Find Facebook to influence their purchasing decision most, with YouTube coming in second at nearly 18 percent. YouTube is especially popular with men (22.8 percent) compared to women (13.9 percent).