Tom Smith, founder of GlobalWebIndex, exclusively talks us through their new Social Engagement Benchmark report.

We've just finished working on a very interesting study - a global ranking of Social Media Engagement. It allows us to say not only which types of consumers are most likely to be engaged with social media platforms but also which markets are leading the way. The results are startling – Asia on top and mature markets like the UK and US lagging.

Like We Are Social’s own recent report on Social, Digital and Mobile in Asia, it shows just how much of a driver Asia will be when it comes to the way we think about and the way brands should be using social media.

The key findings are:

  • Asia (with the exception of Japan) dominates, with China leading the way regardless of demographic compared. Mature internet markets are generally more passive with lower scores in all demographics and require a different approach.
  • Fast growing internet markets, like China, Brazil, India or Indonesia lead in social engagement and crucially in many cases have larger social universe that delivers a higher in market reach than social media in mature high penetration markets.
  • These results demand that we re-think how multi-market social organisational and marketing allocations are made. Brands need to move away from using simple internet penetration statistics as a guide for investment.
  • When it comes to social, the distinction between “mature” and “emerging markets” needs to be re-thought.

We’ve calculated our SEB scores by using a simple measure to assess how socially engaged a particular consumer segment has become.

It involves key social behaviours and aggregates social consumer engagement in participation, content creation and brand engagement (using four separate measures in each category).

These are then aggregated into one holistic measure and weighted to 100 point scale against the highest-ranking demographic segment on the planet. In the case of 2012’s benchmark report this is high-income Chinese consumers.

We weight all scores on a global basis to remove local bias and provide a true reflection of how socially engaged each market and each segment truly is.