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Samir Balwani is an emerging technology strategist at Morpheus Media , a firm specializing in Social Marketing, SEM, and SEO.
A new study by Anderson Analytics looks into the demographics and psychographics of social networking users on Facebook , MySpace , Twitter , and LinkedIn with a goal of providing marketers with information about users' interests and buying habits as related to their network of choice. The end result is a detailed look at the profiles and habits of social networking users on the web today. Some of the study's findings echo things we've already heard.
A new report from global public relations firm Weber Shandwick has found that when it comes to Fortune 100 companies, they just don't get Twitter...not yet anyway. According to the study (PDF), which looked at how the world's 100 top companies used Twitter between late August and early September, the companies have a grand total of 540 Twitter accounts owned by just 73 companies; 27 firms don't participate in the microblogging tool/social network. Some 76 percent of those 540 accounts weren't "updated often" and 52 percent were not actively engaged, as measured by the accounts' use of hash tags, links, references, and retweets.
California Milk Processor Board Keeps Dreaming by Karl Greenberg 2 hours ago The California Milk Processor Board is extending its dream-themed campaign under its "Got Milk" umbrella. The somnolent campaign continues the idea that since milk has tryptophan, it is a good natural sleep aid if you have a glass before hitting the sack. ... Twitter's Vine App Update Allows More Sharing, Web-Embedded Video by Steve Smith 4 hours ago The version number update to Twitter's video app Vine adds features that marketers could find especially helpful.
Newspapers may be reporting on the demise of e-mail, and some research indicates that young people are turning more toward social networking than more traditional online communication, but college students still see e-mail as a critical medium for messages. More than one-quarter of college students told the Participatory Marketing Network and Pace University’s Lubin School of Business’ IDM Lab that e-mail was the activity they were least likely to give up for a week—far ahead of the 9% who said they couldn’t live without social networks. “These results may be surprising to some, but not if you consider the role email continues to play in the day-to-day lives of Gen Y,” said Michael Della Penna, PMN co-founder and executive chairman, in a statement.
Not only has Facebook surpassed MySpace as the leading social network in the US, it has moved far ahead in terms of market share of US social networking site visits. According to September 2009 data from Experian Hitwise , almost 59% of all social network category visits were at Facebook, compared with just over 30% for second-place MySpace. That amounted almost to a tripling in share for Facebook year over year, while MySpace dropped 55%. Twitter, in fourth place with 1.84% of social networking site visits in September 2009, posted a huge increase over September 2008. But reports of a Twitter slowdown are bolstered by the fact that the site actually lost share since August 2009, down 0.11 percentage points.
...at least according to an infographic by Information is Beautiful .
US executives have come to value social media very highly to enhance relationships with customers and build their company’s brand, according to the “Social Media: Embracing the Opportunities, Averting the Risks” white paper from Russell Herder and Ethos Business Law . More than eight in 10 management, marketing and HR executives responding to the July 2009 survey cited relationship- and brand-building as benefits of social media. Execs also considered social media a good tool for recruitment (69%) and customer service (64%), and 46% thought it enhanced employee morale. Respondents reported using social media most for brand-building, followed by networking, customer service, and various research- and information-related activities.
Though social network advertising gets a lot of attention, it is only one of many ways marketers can reach customers on social networks. Social networks can be used for branding, improving customer loyalty, lead generation, direct marketing and e-commerce. “The beauty of social networks is that they are a place where nearly any marketing goal can be achieved, with nearly any marketing tactic,” said Debra Aho Williamson, eMarketer senior analyst and author of the new report, “ Marketing on Social Networks: Branding, Buying and Beyond .” Common wisdom over the past few years has been that people are interested in interacting with social network friends, not marketers. Not so, according to Anderson Analytics ’ May 2009 survey—52% of social network users had become a fan or follower of a company or brand, while 46% had said something good about a brand or company on a social networking Website—double the percentage who had said something negative (23%).