Where you get your information DOES make a difference.

What does this mean for brands and retailers?

January 18, 2016

For many of us, whether we get our information through Google or Facebook doesn’t seem to make a difference. Or does it? New research from Indiana University finds that those of us who gather our information through social media instead of a search engine are more likely to become trapped in what they call a collective social bubble.

What seems odd about this finding is that many people say that they are tired of search engines that are full of paid ads and misinformation, but at least according to this study, that analyzed over 100 million web clicks and 1.3 billion public posts on social media of 100,000 people, the social media information posts came from a much more narrow range of sources.

What does this mean for brands and retailers? 

Well, for the most part it means we are talking to ourselves; meaning that we are collecting information, and even news information, from those people who have similar values and from those we know. Many of the finding of this study points to the fact that one reason we are gravitating towards social media to gather information is simply information overload.  That we can’t handle the breadth and amount of information that is pushed out 24/7. Just as we are experiencing curation when it comes to the foods and beverages available, perhaps it is time to curate information about foods in an unbiased, unfiltered, non-judgmental way - for retailers and brands to gather the information most shoppers want, and cull it down to a manageable and empowering amount. The issue may not be how many pages of information is on a website or Facebook page, but its quality and clarity.

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