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What's new in marketing research this month: July

This month, we reveal the rise in popularity of Google's Android OS, a sharp increase in consumer multi-screening, plus how often people check their mobile phones - and where.

Brands need Facebook ‘stickiness'
New research has suggested that fewer than 5% of brands possess effective Facebook pages - ones that, after initially receiving a "like" from consumers, attract those consumers back. Market research firms Rubinson Partners and Compete measured the impact Facebook activity had on 63 brands across a four-month period, and found that under one in 20 users who "like" a brand page return to the page a second time within 30 days.

Branded entertainment makes gains
Consumers are putting increased value on branded entertainment. PR firm Edelman polled consumers in the UK and US and reported that perceived value in the entertainment industry has risen to its highest level in three years, with 29% saying they "appreciate" recommendations of content from brands. Social networks such as Facebook and Twitter were cited by respondents as particularly effective channels.

Android marks Europe advance
Smartphones that use Google's Android operating system are becoming increasingly dominant in Europe, taking a majority share of sales in four of the region's ‘big five' markets. New data from Kantar Worldpanel ComTech indicates that Android's share of the market in the UK, Spain, Germany, France and Italy grew from 38.8% in May 2011 to 60% a year later, with Spain (79% share) and Germany (69%) the leading countries for Android users.

Multi-screening on the rise
US consumers' preference for multi-screening is reshaping the way they consume media, the Coalition for Innovative Media Measurement (CIMM) has suggested. The trade body has unveiled two new reports on media trends, which both indicate a general willingness among consumers to go online via their PCs, tablets and smartphones while watching TV. One study indicates that just over one in three viewers use three screens - TV, PC and smartphone - to access video content or visit broadcasters' websites, while 92% use at least two screens.

Media sector set for growth
The new PricewaterhouseCoopers report, Global Entertainment & Media Outlook 2012-2016, forecasts that the sector will rise in value to $2.1tr worldwide in 2016, up from $1.6tr in 2011. This implies annual growth of +5.7% over the five-year period. PwC also suggested that the industry is in the process of adapting to the ‘new normal', with expenditure shifting not just from print media to digital media, but from fixed-line to mobile consumption.

European shoppers look online
The majority of European consumers now conduct online research on products prior to purchase, with over a fifth doing so using a mobile phone, according to a study by McKinsey. The consultancy surveyed 40,000 people in eight markets and found that 60% regularly turned to the internet before buying goods, with nearly half making 25% of their purchases using this channel.

Smartphone owners addicted to checking their phones
58% of smartphone owners check their phones at least once an hour, according to a new report by Lookout. The mobile phone security firm polled 2,000 US mobile users to find out how often they check our phones, and found that 58% can't go an hour without peeking at their mobiles. They also revealed some of the places people check their phones, with ‘lying in bed' admitted by 54%, followed by ‘while using the bathroom' (39%) and ‘during a meal with others' (30%).

Magazines top of the content league
Magazines are the most popular form of paid-for content for US tablet owners, according to a recent survey funded by the Online Publishers Association. The survey found that 10% of respondents paid for magazine content, which came above categories such as entertainment (8%), sports (6%), weather (6%), shopping (5%) and newspapers (5%). Bottom of the list were lifestyle and reference, both with 3%.

eBook sales exceed hardback sales in the US
American publishers are now bringing in more revenue from ebooks than hardcover books, according to a report published by the Association of American Publishers. Collectively, adult ebooks brought in $282.3million in Q1 - a 28.4% increase from the same period a year ago. Young adult and children's ebooks performed even better, increasing by 233% to $64.3million. Sales of adult hardcover books also grew, but more modestly, up 2.7% to $229.6million in Q1 2012.

29thJun 2012


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