Multichannel conversations put positive spin on brands

Study finds consumers do not restrict conversations about brands to online.

The average consumer talks mostly positively about ten different brands each day, according to a new study.

The survey, commissioned by Starcom MediaVest Group (SMG), News International and ESPN, found that 62% of conversations mentioning brands are “mostly positive”, while 36% of those who pass on information are “very likely” to make a purchase.

The study, conducted by Keller Fay, also reveals 81% of conversations about brands are face-to-face encounters, 11% take place over the phone and only 7% are carried out online.

SMG product development director Paul Selby says it is not just consumers who post comments online that drive word of mouth.

Online channels, however, are cited more frequently than any others when a brand is mentioned in conjunction with specific media or marketing campaigns, according to the survey. Consumers are also 50% more likely to seek more information about a brand when it is mentioned in conjunction with online content than when it is not.

Matthew Roberts, senior research manager (EMEA) at ESPN, says that demographics also play a significant role in driving word of mouth, with 25- to 34-year-olds talking about an average of 12 brands a day.

The most influential consumers are “conversation catalysts”, who talk about twice as many brands a day as the average consumer and are also more likely to be wealthy and degree-educated.

The TalkTrack survey analysed 14,000 conversations recorded by 2,500 adults during the last two weeks of May.

Latest from Marketing Week


Access Marketing Week’s wealth of insight, analysis and opinion that will help you do your job better.

Register and receive the best content from the only UK title 100% dedicated to serving marketers' needs.

We’ll ask you just a few questions about what you do and where you work. The more we know about our visitors, the better and more relevant content we can provide for them. And, yes, knowing our audience better helps us find commercial partners too. Don't worry, we won't share your information with other parties, unless you give us permission to do so.

Register now


Our award winning editorial team (PPA Digital Brand of the Year) ask the big questions about the biggest issues on everything from strategy through to execution to help you navigate the fast moving modern marketing landscape.


From the opportunities and challenges of emerging technology to the need for greater effectiveness, from the challenge of measurement to building a marketing team fit for the future, we are your guide.


Information, inspiration and advice from the marketing world and beyond that will help you develop as a marketer and as a leader.

Having problems?

Contact us on +44 (0)20 7292 3703 or email

If you are looking for our Jobs site, please click here