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Instagram outshines Facebook when it comes to social engagement, according to an analysis of social media data by CX platform Emplifi. In Q4 2021, Instagram posts earned APAC brands approximately 65 interactions per 1,000 impressions.
Although this marked a 35% decline compared to last year, it was still more than the 17 interactions per 1,000 impressions amassed by a Facebook post. Nonetheless, this was still a 26% decrease for Facebook interactions compared to Q4 2020. Despite its sharper decline than Facebook, Instagram still trumps Facebook with close to four times as many interactions, the data found.
At the same time, eCommerce brands were also found to have the highest engagement rates on social media, especially on Facebook (50%) and Instagram (49%). Meanwhile, engagement rates for FMCG companies (2.9%) lag behind others on Facebook, and retail food (3.2%) saw the lowest engagement rates on Instagram.
Ad spend in Singapore has surged by 32% in Q4 2021, in comparison to the previous quarter, with a year-on-year (YoY) growth of 16% to US$2,801.39 per ad account per month. Both Facebook and Instagram witnessed a 24% increase in ad spend during Q4 2021 and a YoY growth of 11% to USD 2,793.12 per ad account per month.
However, Singapore fell behind APAC when it came to cost-per-click growth. Cost-per-click in APAC grew 34% YoY, compared to Singapore, which saw a 20% YoY growth in its cost-per-click.
On the organic side, Facebook instream live videos by brands in APAC generated the highest engagement with fans and followers compared to other types of posts, with 39 median post interactions. For Instagram, Carousel and Instagram TV performed well, with 76 and 62 median post interactions respectively.
Globally, ad spend was higher in Q4 2021 than at any point over the past year, with a 25% increase in ad spend, compared to the previous quarter. At the same time, the holiday season saw paid social increase by 21.15% in Q4 2021, compared to the same quarter in 2020, highlighting how much more brands are willing to invest in paid social during the holiday season. While global click-thru -rates held steady over the quarter, cost-per-click increased, hence marketers had to pay more for that audience.
Social media customer care
About 67% of APAC consumers use social media as a tool to show brands how they feel about them, according to Forrester analytics consumer technographics benchmark survey, 2021. As consumers move to social media to interact with brands, there is a gradual shift towards turning to social media channels for customer care and support.
Within the APAC region, brand response rate dipped slightly in Q4 2021 compared to Q4 2020 across Facebook (-6.45%) and Instagram (-7.48%). On the other hand, Twitter’s response rate grew by 3.27%. Globally, beauty and FMCG brands were found to have the highest response rates to user questions on social media, while automotive brands had the lowest response rates.
Additionally, APAC brands were found to take longer to reply to user questions in comments on Instagram and Twitter, with YoYincreases of 1.36 hours and 0.7 hours respectively. Meanwhile, response times on Facebook decreased by just under an hour in Q4 2021, compared to Q4 2020. According to Emplifi, the growing mainstream use of chatbots may mean that brands will turn to AI-powered chatbots to respond to frequently asked questions, which in turn will increase their response rate and response time.
Emplifi CMO Zarnaz Arlia said that it is important that brands understand what consumers want and need at each stage of their purchase journey. "The foundation of any successful social media campaign is content that truly resonates with your target audiences, which alongside customer care, is a large contributor to a positive customer experience," she added.
According to Arlia, consumers expect fast answers to their questions and we see that there is room for improvement when it comes to brands’ response time on social media. By leveraging technology to handle simpler inquiries, brands can free up their agents to focus on more complex requests, ensuring that they meet customer expectations time and time again. "The businesses that will succeed and gain market share, are the ones that understand just how big the impact of customer experience is today," she said.
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