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In Germany, Users Interact With Brands on Social Media

Facebook sees higher engagement than Twitter

Consumers in Germany expect a lot from brands on social media channels. But they’re willing to engage with companies on those platforms to get useful information from them, according to a June 2012 survey of adult internet users in Germany conducted by email marketing company ExactTarget.

The survey found that almost four in 10 of those polled identified as “Facebook fans,” defined as those users who had become a fan or “liked” at least one brand or organization. A much smaller number of respondents, only 7%, thought of themselves as “Twitter followers,” meaning they followed at least one business or brand on the site. Meanwhile, 94% subscribed to permission-based marketing email.

While the percentage of subscribers was pretty constant across all age demographics, younger users in Germany were more likely than older ones to consider themselves Facebook fans. And Twitter hit a sweet spot among those ages 25 to 34, 20% of whom identified as Twitter followers.

ExactTarget found that consumers in Germany were more concerned than those in other countries with maintaining some discretion online due to privacy concerns, something that marketers should keep in mind when targeting this demographic. But they were not totally averse to interacting with companies through social media platforms. About one-third of Facebook fans had “liked” a brand or organization on Facebook either to stay abreast of products and services, or to receive news of discounts and sales. Almost three in 10 interacted with companies to get the early word on new products or to take advantage of giveaways and similar promotions.

While accounting for a much smaller overall percentage of online users in the country, Twitter followers had similar motivations as Facebook fans for engaging with companies through the microblogging platform. Their top motivation was to receive the latest news on a company or organization, named by 27%. That was followed by getting more information on personal interests (26%), receiving word of sales and discounts (22%) and getting a heads up on new products and releases (22%).

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Check out today’s other articles, “Social Media Begins to Drive the Political Conversation” and “iVillage Meets Socializing Moms on Mobile.”

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