With 67% of the worldwide internet population visiting, social networks and blogs are now outpacing email in popularity. They've become the 4th most popular online category, according to Nielsen Online.
"Social networking has become a fundamental part of the global online experience," says John Burbank, CEO of Nielsen Online. "While two-thirds of the global online population already accesses member community sites, their vigorous adoption and the migration of time show no signs of slowing. Social networking will continue to alter not just the global online landscape, but the consumer experience at large. This study explains why."
Here are some more interesting nuggets of information on the matter from Nielsen:
- One in every 11 minutes online globally is accounted for by social network and blogging sites.
- The social network and blogging audience is becoming more diverse in terms of age: the biggest increase in visitors during 2008 to "Member Community" Web sites globally came from the 35-49 year old age group (+11.3 million).
- Mobile is playing an increasingly important role in social networking. Nielsen found UK mobile Web users have the greatest propensity to visit a social network through their handset, with 23 percent (2 million people) doing so, compared to 19 percent in the US (10.6 million people). These numbers are a big increase over last year - up 249 percent in the UK and 156 percent in the US.
Does this mean people will start responding to social media marketing over email marketing? Only time will tell. So will you when you leave a comment below.
Social Networking and E-mail Marketing Converge
Nielson Online Releases January 2009 Search Engine Share Rankings
81% of Online Holiday Shoppers Read Product Reviews
Online Video Wins the 9-5 Hour, Weekdays