Consumers across the UAE have stated that WhatsApp is the number one app and social platform that they can’t go without in this day and age, unseating Skype from its position as the industry leader, new research by MBLM has found.
MBLM’s Brand Intimacy Study for 2019 found that brands that are part of the smartphone ecosystem generate greater degrees of intimacy with consumers. Brands in the ‘apps & social platforms’ category mirror this trend, and the industry as a whole rose four places to take the ninth position out of the 15 industries researched in 2019. The industry also ranks second among all industries for brands consumers cannot live without. Within the industry, WhatsApp ranked number one, followed by Google Maps, Facebook, Instagram, Skype, Zomato, Twitter, LinkedIn, Snapchat, and Uber rounding out the top 10, in this order. The apps & social platforms industry as a whole ranked second for industries people can’t live without, right behind ‘Tech & Telecom’, which was ranked the number one industry.
“UAE consumers are technologically savvy and understand the value of businesses that make them smarter, more connected and more capable,” said William Shintani, managing partner at MBLM. “A trend we’ve seen throughout our previous years is the rise of the smartphone ecosystem. We see that device brands rank higher, followed by content and services and lastly in the ecosystem, apps and social media platforms. Brands that are within the ecosystem score higher in emotional connection overall than brands that are not. Ranking nine out of 15 places, apps and social platform brands have an opportunity to increase their intimate bonds and emotional relationships with their users given their usage and importance.”
The study also showed that within the apps & social platforms industry, 40 per cent of consumers felt an immediate emotional connection with the industry. In addition, 73 per cent of users in the 18-34 year-old millennial demographic felt an immediate emotional connection with facebook. Three of the top four brands in this category this year – WhatsApp, facebook and Instagram – are owned by Facebook. Uber’s ranking went down from the fifth position in 2018 to the 10th position in 2019; while Instagram demonstrated solid growth, moving up from seventh place to fourth place.
The data also showed that WhatsApp ranked number one for the 18-34 year-old demographic, males and high income users surveyed; while GoogleMaps was ranked first among the 35-64 year-old demographic and female users.