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Results of a recent survey on social media use show a decline in exposure to offline advertising, as exposure to online advertising is increasing.

This exposes a trend whereby more people are looking at adverts online as they look at less adverts offline.

The results emerge from a survey conducted by Misco in association with Ornate Group.

Ornate Group founder Andrew Zammit-Manduca said, “These results demonstrate the need for businesses to have a social media strategy which is fully integrated in their marketing strategy.”

He continued, “Businesses have an opportunity to embed the use of social media in their marketing efforts in a coherent and consistent manner, which would enable them to achieve a return on their investment.”

Perhaps surprisingly, the percentage of respondents saying they shopped online in 2020 registered a slight decrease over the previous year, a result solely attributable to the fact that there was a significant drop in the number of persons who purchased airline tickets or hotel stays online, given the travel restrictions.

On the other hand, shopping for clothes, footwear, gifts, groceries, beauty care and personal care products has increased significantly.

Other results emerging from the study include that almost 90 per cent of people in Malta go online at least once a day, according to National Statistics Office data, yet 64 per cent of social media users only view other persons’ content and comments, without taking further action such as sharing or creating new content, exposing a significant gap between content creators and non-creators.

The results show that certain noticeable trends are emerging, in terms of social media usage.

While Facebook is still the social media network which is most accessed, there is a trend of increased usage of Instagram and YouTube. Increasingly, usage of social media takes place on a smartphone or a laptop and less on a desktop PC or a tablet.

Meanwhile, the use of certain apps, such as social networking apps, news apps and retail apps, is increasing, while the usage of others, such as travel apps, is decreasing, falling sharply in 2020.

Rebecca Gera, director of Misco, commented that, “The results of this year’s survey, which is the third wave of such a survey, the previous ones having been conducted in 2018 and 2020, are certainly influenced by the impact of Covid-19 on people’s behaviour.”

“However, it is expected that some of this behaviour has now become entrenched and the emerging trends are expected to consolidate in future waves”.

Copies of the report may be obtained from Misco by emailing them at research@miscomalta.com.

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