Restaurants lead the pack when it comes to social engagement

Caddle and Ad Standards data reveals how companies are driving consumer product education and conversion.

social-mediaWhile people of all ages follow consumer brands in roughly the same proportions, restaurants are far and away the dominant category.

Using data derived from two main sources a Daily Survey Panel of over 8,000 respondents, along with two custom studies conducted in September with more than 3,000 Canadian respondents, data insights firm Caddle and advocacy group Ad Standards explored key trends in Canadian social media consumption.

Among the findings: 13% of Gen Z follow consumer brands, not far off from 12% of the entire population who do the same. Among users who follow at least one brand, the types of accounts that make the top five are restaurants (50.8%), retailers (36.9%), clothing (34.6%), CPG brands (33.3%) and food (29.4%). According to the data, restaurants are 750% more popular than the least-popular category, parenting (6%). While there are some differences across demographics, restaurants seem to be the most popular, regardless of age (click to enlarge):


The report also found that boomers value social media for brand-specific contests and giveaways, more than two times as much as Gen Zers, a demo that prioritizes contests and giveaways the least.

Women value brand content more than men (+18%), along with gaining access to promo codes (+22%) and entering contests (+11%). Men, meanwhile, outweigh women in their use of social media to interact with brands (+45%), for customer service issues (+94%), for entertaining content (+10%) and to access new brand releases (+16%).

According to the numbers, three of every five consumers have discovered new products on social platforms. Gen Zers and Millennials in particular over-index on this measure (66% each).

Overall, the data reveals that younger generations tend to make more frequent purchases based on brand recommendations than older ones (e.g., Gen Zers make “monthly or more” purchases at least 4.1x than Baby Boomers)

Influencer marketing remains popular nationwide. In fact, Canadians like influencer content 154% more than other brand content, while two-fifths of consumers follow influencers to learn about new products/trends. Influencer accounts are also 2.2 times more popular than brand accounts.

Lastly, most Canadians are daily users of social media, with usage inversely related to age. Three platforms come out on top: YouTube (75% ), Facebook (74%) and Instagram (48%). With slight variation in numbers, this triumvirate is generally consistent across demographics.

By contrast, usage trends differ by age in terms of hours spent. For example, Gen Zers and Millennials spend an average of 3.4 hours per week on video-driven TikTok, versus two hours per week on average for the older demo.