Corporate Eye

Europe Ahead of U.S. in Social Media Usage

A study released by Nielsen earlier this year shows that the British and Australians use social media more than Americans. As the image below shows, the United States ranked third in October 2009 based on the amount of time people spent on social media sites per day. Both Australia and Britain came out ahead of the United States in terms of social media usage.


Nielsen_Social_Media_Usage_Study


It’s interesting to note from this chart, however, that there are great gaps in social media usage from one European country to the next. Clearly, social media marketing strategies must account for these nuances. Furthermore, according to an article on The Economist earlier this year, two-thirds of the 350 million Facebook users are outside of the United States, so there is no doubt that social media marketing should be a global strategy for marketers.

These social media usage statistics are very important to companies looking to expand globally or within targeted international geographic areas. Blanket social media marketing strategies won’t work. Just as social media usage varies by age, it also differs by location.

Do your research and make sure you understand how your target audience is using social Web tools before you develop and launch social media marketing campaigns. While it’s still very difficult to measure social media marketing results, it’s much easier to learn how people use social Web tools and then tailor programs to match those behaviors.

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Susan Gunelius is the author of 10 marketing, social media, branding, copywriting, and technology books, and she is President & CEO of KeySplash Creative, Inc., a marketing communications company. She also owns Women on Business, an award-wining blog for business women. She is a featured columnist for Entrepreneur.com and Forbes.com, and her marketing-related articles have appeared on websites such as MSNBC.com, BusinessWeek.com, TodayShow.com, and more. She has over 20 years of experience in the marketing field having spent the first decade of her career directing marketing programs for some of the largest companies in the world, including divisions of AT&T and HSBC. Today, her clients include large and small companies around the world and household brands like Citigroup, Cox Communications, Intuit, and more. Susan is frequently interviewed about marketing and branding by television, radio, print, and online media organizations, and she speaks about these topics at events around the world. You can connect with her on Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, or Google+.
 
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