Digital marketing firm Razorfish recently released FEED: The 2009 Razorfish Digital Brand Experience Report. The report, written by Garrick Schmitt, is an annual analysis of how consumers are taking to and interacting with new Internet technologies and Internet services. With a focus on understanding how consumers are now interacting with brands online, businesses should find that this makes for some pretty interesting reading. The study group comprised of 1,000 U.S. consumers in four major age groups (50.5% female, 49.5% male). Findings A massive 65.3% of people’s opinions about a brand were influenced by an online experience. Even more astoundingly 97.1% of those people said that that online experiences influenced whether or not they purchased a product or service from the brand in question. Business brands are continually making an impact on social networking sites. So far that has resulted in 25.5% of those on Twitter interacting with brands, something much larger than previous years. When someone follows a brand what does it mean? Well according to the study, 47.45% of the time it will usually cause the person in question to consider the brand as an option when they are purchasing a product in their market area. In terms of referrals, 29.41% of people said they might recommend the brand to others. Knowing why people connect to you online is something that stumps many people. Is it the interesting and quirky sayings you come out with? Or maybe it’s the valuable news and links you provide? Well apparently the main reason is none of the above. The leading reason that people connect with a brand online is purely because they are in search of exclusive deals or offers! This is a valuable insight to have when approaching your online marketing via all business social networking sites. What does it all mean? The Internet can play a huge part in the success or downfall of a business. Over the past few months more and more businesses have been realising this and interacting with the consumer on a heightened scale. Most consumers don’t have a problem interacting with brands, as long as they are ‘engaged with’ and they receive something in return. If a brand is to fully understand and connect with the consumer/target audience online it’s better to give rather than take.