It Came from Facebook! The Social Media Marketing Challenge that Can’t be Ignored

According to Global Faces and Networked Places, an eye-opening research report just released by Nielsen BuzzMetrics, “Two-thirds of the world’s Internet population visit a social network or blogging site and the sector now accounts for almost 10% of all internet time. ‘Member Communities’ has overtaken personal Email to become the world’s fourth most popular online sector after search, portals and PC software applications.” Not only is this segment large, but use of member communities grew at twice the rate of email last year, and three times faster than the other top online activities. Among the report’s other findings:

* While the total amount of time spent online, globally, increased by 18% last year, the amount of time spent on member communities rose by 63%, and the time spent on one site—Facebook—rose an astounding 566%. Facebook is the ninth-most popular site on the web overall, and also among the “stickiest” with the highest average time per person spent on the site of the top 75 online brands.

* The largest growth in Facebook traffic came from people in the 35-49 age bracket.

* Traditional advertising plays poorly on social networks; the percentage of visitors who view advertising on social networks as an “intrusion” rose nearly a third last year to almost 40%, and the share saying they “didn’t mind” seeing relevant ads also increased. As the Nielsen report puts it, “advertising should be about participating in a relevant conversation with consumers rather than simply pushing ads on them. After all, it is social media. Advertising shouldn’t be about interrupting or invading the social network experience, it should be part of this conversation…advertising should follow the same philosophy of adding value through interaction and consultation…and adding value – such as offers, sneak previews and co-creation of content.”

via B2B Marketing Blog, Web 2.0 Social Media, Business Blogging Tools, Micromarkets and Interactive PR.

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