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Are you digitally normal?

According to new research released this month by Mindshare, Singapore and China are among the countries leading the global league tables when it comes to online motivations. The report, entitled “Are You Digitally Normal? The 2013 Mindshare Digital Normalness Index (MDNI)” reveals that Singaporeans are mostly motivated to go online by entertainment, while the Chinese are motivated by self-expression and transaction. Meanwhile, Portugal is the nation whose online behaviour is most motivated by information.

“This new research is a fresh way of looking at online national audiences and shows the importance of understanding that every group is motivated by different reasons when they go online,” says Norm Johnston, Mindshare’s Global Digital Leader. “The research also challenges our pre-conceptions.”

Self-expression, entertainment, information gathering and transacting are the key motivating factors that Mindshare examine in the report, which are contrasted against the digital infrastructure of the 33 countries included in the survey. So, which countries are “digitally normal”, and which fall below the benchmark?

USA and Canada

Canada is the 17th country most motivated by self-expression to use digital media, whereas the USA is the 31st. In the USA, individual are more driven by entertainment.

South Korea

While South Korea is one of the most advanced digital nations, it is only the 23rd most motivated by information, although self-expression, entertainment and transacting are all huge drivers.


The United Kingdom is considered “below normal” in all four areas of motivation when compared its advanced infrastructure, and places 17th.

Latin America

Out of all the Latin American countries, Chile is the furthest ahead of the “normal” benchmark at number 11, beating Venezuela at 18, Colombia at 19, Mexico at 21, Peru at 26 and Argentina at 29.

BRIC Countries

Brazil, Russia, India and China, often grouped together due to the similarities in their recent economic development, are all above “normal”, with China topping the league table at number 1. Brazil is 14th, Russia is 12th, and India is 5th.

Only 14 countries were deemed “normal” across all four motivators. The UK, USA, Australia and Japan were all judged as seriously behind, considering the quality of their infrastructures. Johnston believes that the varying “modes” of different countries require bespoke communication, “making the use of adaptive marketing techniques vital.”


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