When it comes to social media marketing in Russia, it is safe to say that it is an essential tool, without which it is hard to survive in today’s competitive market. With more than 67 million active users on social media accounts and 87.5 million active internet users overall, the possibilities which the Russian digital market has to offer are almost limitless.
If a company wants to understand the Russian internet audience, it has to learn about the social networking in the country, which is very different to Western markets. Facebook, for example, does not dominate in Russia and has currently only 23.4 million Russian users. VKontakte, on the other hand, has over 220 million registered accounts, while another Russian social network “Odnoklassniki” has at the moment 124 million users worldwide.
In this article we will present you the four major players in the Russian Social media market, focusing on the marketing possibilities each platform has to offer.
There are a few ways to use internet marketing in vK.
- The first and most common is simply opening a branded page, which will include information about the brand, photos, videos and any other useful content. By producing interesting content the group posts collect “shares” and “likes” which helps the branded content spread organically through vK. In this case the users are doing the advertising job for the brand. The more interesting the content that appears on the brands page – the more people see it. This gives a great opportunity to introduce the brand to people who don’t know it yet. Through branded groups it is possible to not only get and keep new clients, but also change their opinion about the brand, encourage a useful discussion and turn negative reactions into positive and happy clients.
2. The second option that vK offers is targeted marketing or social ads. This could be done in the form of teaser ads which will appear on the left side of the screen. The advanced options of vK such as targeting for a certain audience section and the new retargeting option help the brand to weed out the irrelevant network users and to be shown only to specific audience section. vK gives the option to pay either for clicks or views regarding the goals of the brand.
3. The third option which is available at the moment is “sponsored posts” – these posts look like regular posts on the user’s news feed and contain sponsored content.
You will find vK marketing useful if:
- Your product suits a wide range of users. The wider your potential target audience, the more successful will be your advertising online.
- If you already have a branded page in vK then targeted marketing will help you to bring new users to the group.
- If you have an online shop, the social media can help you raise the sales.
- Targeted marketing works well with gaming, apps and is an easy way to fish out strong gamers.
- Coffee places, restaurants, fitness clubs, medical treatment and many other local business can expand through online marketing.
- If you want to attract new users to conferences, seminars, parties and other events – the social media is the perfect place to do so.
Odnoklassniki is a great strategic channel and allows you as a brand to build a branded page, share posts, images and videos and divide them by categories. An interesting feature is the possibility to click on “Members” and see all the followers of a given community or brand page – as it happens on platforms like Vkontakte and Twitter
In order to gain an audience on the network it is better to create a brand page rather than a group for your business. Odnoklassniki brand pages contain tabs for discussion topics, multimedia sections, and outside links. Photos, videos, and quizzes tend to attract the most activity on brand pages, so pairing informative text with multimedia content ensures that your posts will garner more views and shares. Which will lead to more people being exposed to your brand and its news and featured.
There is also an opportunity to advertise via banner and teaser ads, that is very popular among advertisers. The ads-system Mytarget allows to target your audience according to:
- Time of day
Moi Mir (My World) has more than 50 million registered users, over 20 million visitors weekly, 55% of them are between 25 and 44 years old. If you are a company looking for clients in Russia, this platform can be a great place to find them. In Moi Mir you can find many different industries, such as fashion, cars, household appliances, entertainment and so on.
Just like in vK and Odnoklassniki, there are a few options when it comes to online marketing:
The first one is opening a branded page or a thematic community. There you can promote content, recommend interesting branded materials and establish links. By adding people to your community you will increase the effectiveness of your advertising campaign by targeting it to the right users.
The second option is to launch targeted marketing, this can be done according to age, sex, location and interests of your target audience. You can set the times and dates of the banners and choose the platform on which your ad should be posted on. This method is very effective, dynamic and attracts plenty of attention due to its large banner format 200×300 and 200×200.
Another way to get new clients in Moi Mir is promotion through a special app, which might be a bit complex and pricey but the future results will speak for themselves.
Moi Mir openly recommends to run targeted ads with CPC pricing rather than CPM, in which case the ad gets more conversions.
With more than over 1.65 billion monthly active users this social media platform needs no introduction. In Russia though, this network is more popular among highly educated people with good English skills, many of them are businessmen and top managers.
In February 2016 the number of active users was 1,6 million people who posted more than 48 million messages. 57,9% of the users are woman and 42,1% are men. Most users are in the age group 25-34 and 35-44.
The platform offers few types of advertising:
- Regular targeted marketing (normal banners which are shown on the right side)
- Mobile targeted marketing (this is very important because more than 800 million visit the site from their mobile phones)
- Advertising in specific groups (in this case you have to address the admin of the group with the request and he publishes the ad on his page)
The ads could be published as “normal” banners, which appear on the right side of the page, but also can be shown directly on the news feed, marked as a “sponsored post”. The targeting options are quite standard:
- Targeting based on interests (age, hobbies, country and so on)
- Targeting based of fans (the people who liked your Facebook group or similar groups)
- Targeting based on mailing list
- Remarketing (targeting on the users who visited your webpage)
Attracting new customers through the Russian Social Media can be done in many different and efficient ways. The most important thing to remember is that it is a huge market with its own language and specifics, so be sure to choose the right platform four your business promotion.