Women Who Read Blogs Trust Blogger Advice; Strong Majority Have Purchased Based on It

BlogHer’s 5th Annual Study of Women and Social Media Concentration of Blog Users Driven to Purchase Nearly Double That of Facebook or Twitter Users
BlogHer, Inc., the premium cross-platform media network and publisher for women, released its 5th Annual Women and Social Media Study, revealing deeper trust between blog communities and their active readers versus other leading social media outlets, with the highest rate of conversion to purchasing action among active blog users.
Now in its fifth year, the study, conducted by Vision Critical, gathers insights on media usage trends among two populations of women, a BlogHer community sample and a general U.S. population sample.
The study identifies emerging platforms to watch, and traces the connection between why women use media channels, and the resulting impact each channel has on purchasing behaviors.
Key findings from the study include:

  • Women use social tools for different reasons: While Facebook ranks the highest for fun and keeping up with friends and family, blogs rank highest to learn about new products, for product recommendations and to make purchase decisions.

    • 77 percent use Facebook purely for fun, while 87 percent turn to Facebook to stay updated on family.
    • When it comes to blogs, 41 percent look to learn about new products and 39 seek out product recommendations.
    • 36 percent use blogs to make purchase decisions.
  • More than 61 percent of active blog readers have made purchases based on a blog recommendation, almost double the rate of Facebook and Twitter active users (33% and 31% respectively). Purchase conversion amongst the BlogHer community soars to 87 percent.
  • Women turn to online information sources at critical points in their purchase process, both as a first stop (35%) and after they’ve narrowed their choices (42%). Blog reading correlates strongly with seeking online information during the purchasing process, with more than 90 percent of the BlogHer community and 80 percent of the general population of blog readers reporting they turn to online and social sources, versus only 60 percent of the general population.
  • The BlogHer community continues to embrace emerging platforms, with very strong adoption of new tools like Instagram (43%) and Pinterest (77%) versus the general population (11% and 19% respectively).

“After five years of conducting this study, reviewing campaign-based statistics on purchase intent and lift, and watching our own network grow, BlogHer knows that there’s no one a woman trusts more for advice, recommendations and guidance than another woman in her circle,” said Lisa Stone, BlogHer Co-founder and CEO. “Given the concentration of engaged users who will act on what they learn reading blogs, there is no more efficient use of marketing dollars online today.”
The Executive Summary of the 2012 Women and Social Media Study can be found here: http://www.blogher.com/women-and-social-media-2012
About the Survey:
The 2012 Women and Social Media Study compares two user samples:

  • A general U.S. population sample was fielded from a Vision Critical Online Panel. The results were weighted by age to be representative of U.S. online characteristics. There were 1,011 female and 500 male respondents. The margin of error at 99% confidence is +/-2.4%.
  • A BlogHer Network sample, fielded across an audience of 37 million users, consisted of a BlogHer web network intercept sample of 1,060 female and 21 male respondents. The margin of error at 99% confidence is +/-2.9%.
  • All portions of the study were conducted in February 2012. The data is comparative. Responses from the two samples were not combined.

About BlogHer: 
Reaching 37 million women each month, BlogHer is the leading cross-platform media network created by, for and with women social media leaders. BlogHer developed and leads the marketplace with the most robust economic and networking opportunities for women in social media and brands seeking to engage in authentic and persuasive dialog with them. Founded in February 2005 by Elisa Camahort Page, Jory Des Jardins and Lisa Stone, BlogHer publishes and syndicates news, information, advice and recommendations to and from 3,000 premium blogs, delivers uniquely insightful research on women in social media across interest areas, hosts the world’s largest conferences for women in social media and curates a daily news service, BlogHer.com. BlogHer’s investors are Venrock, Comcast Interactive Capital, and Azure Capital Partners.