GlobalWebIndex: Social Media still popular and increasing – but most user still passive

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The GlobalWebIndex has launched its latest report Social Platform Adoption Trends 2012. It offers insights how consumers use social media platforms like Facebook, Google+ and Twitter, and what these platforms play in their lives. The international study has interviewed over 152,000 individuals in 31 key internet markets.

The report make clear that Social Media is part of the modern internet experience: 90% have an account on at least one social platform with 70% of them contributed in August 2012. The emerging internet markets which are responsible for the growth numbers are Indonesia, China, South Korea, the Philippines and Russia.

Not surprisingly Facebook users are the most active of all the global social platform users. In the last month, 64% of its users were contributing to the social network via PC, tablet or mobile (653 million). This means a 40% increase year-on-year. 43% (273 million) were active via mobile devices. However, 192 million of the 845 million people who visited Facebook in the past month did not make a single contribution. Trend data expects Facebook to hit 1.5 billion users by the Q3 2013 and 2 billion users by the end of 2014 as of emerging countries like Brazil, Indonesia and India while countries like US, Sweden, Hong Kong and Singapore are declining. Sharing photos is the most important activity on all the devices used by Facebook users (and on all other social networks).

By integrating the rest of the Google product range, G+ counts 336 million active users (58% increase in the past six months) these days. China, India and Indonesia lead the usage. On a global level, 120 million active users have shared photos through the service while 108 million have hit a +1.

On the 140 character platform more and more people are creating accounts (517 million users) but just 262 million were active in the past month. While posting comments is the number one activity (48%), it gets followed by photo sharing as the second-most important activity in Twitter (41%).

The photo and picture sharing platform is on the rise with already 53 million active users. A great success bearing in mind it came out of beta in August 2012.

„Mass market social platforms like Facebook, Twitter and Google+ have truly enabled all internet users to become social. They are globalising the internet by providing localised services that users across the world are adopting as their default internet experience. Fast-growing internet markets will continue to drive user base growth and will define how social services are shaped into the future. Despite this globalisation in platforms, local trends remain distinct, with every country showing different patterns of usage. It’s never been more important for brands and marketers to understand their users.“ Tom Smith, Founder, GlobalWebIndex

Spot On!
The study shows some obvious trends in Social Media usage. The passive users are emerging in Social Media all over the world. While it was meant to publish personal experience and share knowledge in peer-to-peer conversation, activity is lowering at the moment. Most users are increasingly following and staying up to date with people they know or that are popular or can make a difference for their lives in terms of information input. The communication level in terms of contribution is decreasing by 16% from 69% in Q2/2012. Many questions are arising from these trends: Why are people inactive? Are they lazy? Is the ROI of Social Media difficult to identify for many people? Or is the value of personal branding disputable when engaging in social media and social networks by sharing links and their personal insights? Let’s discuss…

PS: We will discuss many of these questions in the Women Leadership Panel „Brand perception and the value of social marketing“ at dmexco 2012. Join us if you can!

GlobalWebIndex Social Platforms Report Preview – September 2012 from Tom Smith

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