A SURVEY conducted by TELUS International, a digital customer experience (CX) innovator that designs, builds, and delivers next-generation solutions, including AI and content moderation, for global and disruptive brands, found that all generations of European respondents are likely to be influenced by social media ads when contemplating a purchase (56% of Baby Boomers, 71% of Gen X, 82% of Millennials and 79% of Gen Z).
In Ireland, all generations look to social media ads before making a purchase (61% of Baby Boomers, 75% of Gen X, 76% of Millennials, and 62% of Gen Z).
The survey, which polled 2,000 consumers across Ireland, the UK, Germany, and France about their expectations before, during, and after a purchase, revealed what each generation finds most important to have a successful customer experience.
Social Media and Reviews Lead the Way for Consumers in Ireland and Europe on Brand Awareness and Product Research In addition to the strong influence social media has over purchasing decisions, the survey also found that 83% of respondents consult online reviews before making a purchase.
This was the case for 81% of Irish consumers overall. Additionally, positive reviews are clearly influential to 83% of respondents in Ireland overall: Millennials’ (84%) and Gen X’s (88%) purchasing decisions as they are to Gen Z’s (75%) and Baby Boomers’ (86%).
In the past year, 81% of Gen Z respondents in Europe (73% of respondents in Ireland), have made at least one purchase stemming from a social media ad, with 13% making at least six (16% in Ireland). Even though Baby Boomers were the least likely of the generations to have made a purchase from a social media ad in the past year, half (51%) still did.
“Because of the meteoric rise of online shopping and time spent on social media, brands must think digital when it comes to designing their overall approach to the customer experience,” said Maria Pardee, chief commercial officer at TELUS International.
“Social media has become a critical space for brands to positively influence buying decisions across all generations.
“These survey results demonstrate the value that brands can derive from dedicating resources to moderating user-generated content on their sites such as product reviews, questions, complaints, and comments, to make a great first impression.
2They also show the tremendous upside to optimising social media ads to ensure consumers are seeing products and content most relevant to them.”
The majority of survey respondents (81% of all respondents, 79% of respondents in Ireland) across all age groups expect at least part of their customer journey to be automated versus having to interact with a human.
Respondents in France (54%), Germany (51%), and Ireland (44%) indicated that real-time help powered by AI has the most positive impact on how they view a brand and is most likely to grow their loyalty.
Those in the UK (49%) cited an understanding of what they are feeling (e.g. dissatisfaction, frustration) to troubleshoot and direct them to the right resource. Across the countries surveyed, Millennials are also serious about automation as 72% are likely to remain loyal to a brand and 70% are likely to recommend a brand if it uses AI to improve their customer experience.
Roger Clancy, VP Operations and General Manager, TELUS International Ireland, which employs more than 2,200 people across its sites in Cork, Dublin, and Mayo said: “We are delighted to be part of this European consumer research.
“The results provide key insights on consumer preferences. AI is a vital tool for CX companies to free up the time of customer support agents to focus on complex inquiries and to create lasting connections with customers.
“It is vital that brands ensure an excellent customer experience (CX) at every touchpoint along the customer journey.”