Google and Advertising Age have published a new whitepaper, Strategies to Engage More, Drive Passionate Fans and Earn Customers, based on parallel surveys to consumers and advertisers on what they find engaging. The whitepaper explores consumer insights like engagement leads and likelihood to purchase, identifies gaps with companies that don’t prioritize engagement, and offers strategies for increasing engagement.

According to the publishers’ overview, the main insights they uncovered are:


  • Engaged users are 4X more likely to purchase online;
  • Ninety percent of consumers engage at least once/ month with a brand online
  • There is a 40 point gap between companies that say they are prioritizing engagement and those actually managing it, and
  • Effective measurement is a key barrier for most companies to enact an engagement strategy.

Six core engagement insights from these surveys help evaluate, modify and actively manage an online engagement strategy.

  •  Engagers buy more.
  • Inspire engagement, win fans.
  • Many companies have an engagement gap.
  • Measurement matters.
  • Online ads actively engage.
  • To drive engagement, buy engagement.

The first study found that the more a consumer engages, the more likely they are to purchase. This means that as a brand, you can inspire consumers and move them to take action via your online ads.

The second survey focused on industry experts and how they use engagement. They found that advertisers can be broken into the following three groups:


  • Active companies: Those that believe online engagement is a priority and actively manage it (45.8% of our sample)
  • Eager companies: Those that believe online engagement is a priority, but do not actively manage it (40.4% of our sample)
  • Reluctant companies: Those that do not see engagement as a priority at all (13.8% of our sample)

The survey found that there’s an obvious gap between the stated priority of online engagement and the way companies manage it. Although a large majority – 86.2% of industry respondents – agree that engagement is a priority for their company, only 45.8% say their company actively manages engagement – more than a 40 point discrepancy.

Marketers, agencies, and media companies need to embrace the opportunity to engage consumers in the Participation Age. The brands leading the way are those actively managing engagement, taking the time to effectively engage consumers across the web. By getting competitive, a brand can be the best in its category at actively managing an online engagement strategy and drive more results.

You can read the whitepaper in its entirety here.


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