In terms of the total mealtime experience, social media is engaging consumers in a constant conversation. As social media becomes a natural way of talking, sharing ideas and producing information, consumers are looking to Facebook friends, food bloggers with an authentic voice and “people like me,” not necessarily a brand.
According to the study Clicks & Cravings: The Impact of Social Technology on Food Culture by the Hartman Group, 49 percent of online adults say they learn about food via social networking. 40 percent say they learn about food via websites, apps or blogs, and 9 percent have downloaded a mobile food app in the past year.
QR (“Quick Response”) codes seem to be slower to catch on, however, with just 5 percent reporting having scanned one in a store in the past month.
For Millenials, online media resources have overtaken print and even food TV shows in terms of their most valued sources of food inspiration. Many online consumers are there for the deals, the report found. 47 percent say they have searched for online/digital coupons/specials. They’re also searching for recipes.
Texting while driving may be dangerous, but texting and using social media sites while eating is becoming the new normal, according to the report. 29 percent of those surveyed have logged onto Facebook or Twitter while eating, or texted a friend about a great meal.
That number jumps to 47 percent among Millenials. Since eating and being social go hand in hand (dating way back to cavemen days, long before the printed word, even), it seems a natural progression that our virtual community can keep us company during meals as well.
While people may be inspired most by people, not brands, they’re willing to interact with a brand—if that communication is done in an authentic way. To find out more and order the study, click here.