LinkedIn FinanceConnect:14 India – The Story of a Young, Influential and Affluent Audience

July 7, 2014

FinanceConnectIndia

Recently, we got together -- for the first time in India -- with top-notch marketing professionals at LinkedIn FinanceConnect:14 Mumbai to reveal some very interesting findings from two LinkedIn studies: the Mass Affluent Study conducted by Cogent Research, and the SME study conducted on the LinkedIn platform. Marketers from leading banking and financial institutions received intriguing insights into their key audiences -- their personal and professional choices, ever-changing motivations and needs, how they interact with various products as well as their overall brand perceptions.

As marketers look to reach audiences in India, where over 26 Million are currently members on LinkedIn, we thought we'd share some interesting discussion points from the findings:

1. Thirty-six percent of all Mass Affluent social media users use it for discovery or consideration of financial companies, products and services. This holds immense potential for marketers in the financial services industry to target and converse with prospects. The study also suggests that engagement with financial companies is considerably higher amongst younger Mass Affluent social media users. Having said that, around 69% of LinkedIn India users are under the age of 35 -- an encouraging statistic that provides immense opportunity to brands on LinkedIn.

2. It is no surprise that approximately 80% of Mass Affluent social media users read content, review multimedia and follow financial companies to keep-up-to-date. At least one in five Mass Affluent users consider increased transparency a valuable result of  a company’s social presence. To add to this, with an increased and comprehensive social media presence, consumers expect proactive information and communication from financial companies. However, there is a huge gap between information that consumers want versus what they receive from these companies on social media.

3. The SME study that we conducted on LinkedIn suggests that the SMEs are experiencing widespread growth, with 79% of the surveyed companies reporting an increase in total revenue over the past year. Seventy-three percent of the SMEs surveyed said that they have seen an increase in customer/client numbers over the last one year and 67% have reported an increase in their profitability. The growth witnessed by these enterprises can certainly be attributed to their use of social media platforms with over 67% of the SMEs using social media for more than one year.

4. The reach of social media in finance-related activities is also considerably higher amongst the SME community, with over 80% of the SMEs surveyed using social media for this purpose. It is interesting to notice that, at 60%, keeping up-to-date with financial trends is the number one reason for SMEs to come to social media. In fact, compared to other networks, 62% are more open to receiving financial product information from social media sites.

Following its success in New York, Sydney, Sao Paulo, and Toronto, the India chapter of LinkedIn FinanceConnect:14 was truly a first of its kind in the region. In summary, I took away these three ideas for marketers to leverage as they embrace the power of social media:

  1. Consumer trust is of paramount importance especially for brands in the financial sector. Social networks like LinkedIn can help companies build a deeper and more meaningful relationship with their target audience.
  2. A contextually relevant communication has higher impact. Marketers can leverage audience insights to craft relevant messaging.
  3. Brands need to continuously measure their content marketing efforts and tailor their strategy in line with these insights.

You can view more insights presented at LinkedIn FinanceConnect:14 India here.

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