At yesterdays M&M briefing (supported by Adknowledge) on harnessing social applications for brands we got the latest stats from the guys at Nielsen. The highlights are pretty impressive, especially for Social Networks and in particular Facebook:
1. Social Networks are now mainstream in the UK reaching across all ages
21.8 million people in the UK are now on social networks (that’s over 60% of the total UK online population)
Distribution has lost its skew towards under 18s and is now 11% 2-17, 35% 18-34 year olds and a massive 54% in the 35’s and over.
2. Facebook is king
The age skew disappearance across the top 50 social networks is partly accounted for by some growth at LinkedIn (who has an older demographic) but its predominantly a Facebook thing – older brits are arriving on the Facebook scene – 14.4m monthly uniques in September 08. (that’s nearly half the UK online population). Myspace managed 5m uniques and Bebo 4.4m over the same period. But these networks are looking even more niche every month (Bebo for youth self expression and MySpace for music).
In terms of stickiness we rack up on 4 hours 24 minutes on Facebook each month. compare this with a paltry 47 minutes on Myspace or 1 hour 23 on Bebo.
3. Facebook apps are being used more.
In July last year you might have spent 1 in 20 of your precious Facebook minutes on an app – that’s up to 1 in every 5 this year.
Of these the striking stat is not, as you might expect, that we all play Playfish at work, it’s that 20% of all Facebook online app time is spent on Mob Wars. Just how addictive is this one game!
4. Connect, enjoy and express
Universal Mccann added to the stats with a great survey on Social networking motivation:
We use social networks it seems to
- Connect – stay in touch with friends (90%), meet new people (45%)
- Enjoy – fun, and entertainment (58%)
- Express ourselves – upload photos (82%), blog (22%), upload videos(32%)