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Google+ is 2nd most used social network worldwide
GlobalWebIndex released figures last week about active users on various social networks, with a couple of surprising results. Perhaps most unexpected was the fact that Google+ came out as the second-most used network after Facebook, with 318.4 million active users. Comparing penetration of active users against all account holders also saw Facebook come in first, with 62%, followed by Twitter with 51% and Google+ with 44%.
Instagram reaches 150m monthly active users
Facebook-owned Instagram has now reached 150 million monthly active users, adding 50 million in just seven months. For some context, it took 19 months for the network to reach its first 50 million after launching. It also seems that this growth is coming globally, with 60% of those users now coming from outside the USA.
UK women (especially mums) more active than men in social
Women in the UK spend more time on social per month than men, according to a study released by comScore. UK women (aged six and over) averaged 426.3 minutes per month, compared to 305.6 minutes for their male counterparts, though in both genders this figure was higher for those with children: 328.6 minutes in the case of fathers and 443.3 minutes for mums. This last group are also expanding across a number of social networks; 79% of all UK mothers admit to using Facebook and the same figure for YouTube, with 27% on Twitter and 20% on Tumblr, though only 9% say that they use Pinterest.
Brands shouldn’t be afraid to promote posts on Facebook
Ever since brands have been able to promote posts, there has been an element of fear that paying for reach may negatively affect the organic reach a post would gain regardless. However, a study into 5,000 promoted posts from 1,500 pages has concluded that this is not the case: you receive the same organic reach for a promoted post as you would for any other, as shown in the graph below.
Moreover, similar conclusions came about a page’s EdgeRank, the system Facebook uses to see how many people see any post from a page. Looking at the reach of a page’s posts both before and after a ‘spammy promoted update’, the research found that there was no significant difference, either positive or negative.
Did Facebook delay its controversial new terms?
Facebook has seen a fair bit of controversy from its planned new terms, with six consumer watchdogs complaining to the Federal Trade Commission that they made is easier for companies to use people’s names, information and pictures in communications and advertising without the user’s consent. It has been alleged that their release, supposedly planned for last week, has been delayed, though Facebook denies both that fact and the accusation about their motives. Instead, the network’s chief privacy officer, Erin Egan, claimed:
All we are changing is that we are providing more information and more specifics.
Their critics would say that this isn’t the case – that, in fact, users now give automatic consent for companies to use their personal information unless they actively opt out… and that it has become considerably more complicated to do so.
Facebook indefinitely postpones release of new video ads
A big week for delays on Facebook. The network has been planning a new ad offering for some time: 15 second video clips priced between $1m and $2.4m depending on reach. Intended for launch last week, these have since been indefinitely postponed, due to concerns about user experience. Aware that there is usually an initial backlash about any new ad type, Facebook is concerned about advertisers using these as mere TV slots, preferring that there would be some social element. There has been no new release date mooted, so we’ll have to wait and see for when these come back on the agenda.
Facebook launches tool aimed at news organisations
Huzzah! Something Facebook managed to release. It’s a tool for news organisations, which allows them to surface Facebook conversations for use in live programming. CNN’s News Day, for example, has taken Facebook feedback about various breaking news and included it in their show, though the system allows for more elaborate uses than this. It can collect all mentions of a single word on the network and provide a demographic breakdown of who is talking about certain topics; NBC’s The Today Show are taking advantage of this to discuss which topics are most exciting to, for example, male and female or young and old audiences.
The Research & Insights team here at We Are Social are gagging to find out when these new APIs will be released publicly.
Facebook trialling ‘professional skills’ section of profile
Facebook is trialling a ‘professional skills’ feature, which users would be able to add to the work and education section of their profile. The move, seemingly looking at eating into LinkedIn’s share of the professional market, allows the addition of a variety of skills, as shown below.
P&G’s #Softside billboards influenced by engagement on social
P&G’s Downy has created a campaign titled #Softside, which looks to put an end to various disputes, as shown in the image below, is being supported by a number of advertising units including desktop and mobile ads. The most interesting part, though, is a set of digital billboards that will be changed depending on what’s getting the most engagement on Downy’s social presences.
Heineken’s giant Instagram treasure hunt
Heineken has created an Instagram campaign around the US Open Tennis Championship, which looks to turn the network on its side. In doing so, the beer brand is building a giant compilation of photos, which together make up a panoramic view of the stadium. They posted an initial clue from the @Heineken_US Twitter and Instagram accounts, which led to a second part of the riddle in one of these photos. Fans who completed the search were in with a chance to win two tickets to the US Open mens’ final in New York.
Burberry promoting new perfume with integrated campaign
Designer fashion brand Burberry is promoting its new perfume, Brit Rhythm, with an integrated campaign on TV, Instagram and out-of-home. In addition to a 30 second TV advert, the brand has recruited leading Instagrammers to create content under the hashtag #ThisIsBrit; the best of these will be used in outdoor advertising.
Birds Eye linking social to sales
UK frozen food retailer Birds Eye has partnered with Slingshot to allow fans to purchase their products directly from ads on Facebook. The system allows customers to add products to their basket with online retailers such as Tesco, Sainsbury’s, Waitrose and Ocado, all in just one click.
Jack Daniel’s produce first UK Instagram campaign
Jack Daniel’s is using Instagram for the first time in the UK, in celebration of its founder’s birth month of September. Throughout the month, fans will be encouraged to share images of themselves raising a glass to the man himself, using the hashtag #JacksBirthday. This will be supported by content created by the brand, in which people including master distillers and descendants of Jack Daniel, raise a glass themselves.
Lyle & Scott searching for next CEO via social
Scottish knitwear brand Lyle & Scott has decided to search for its next CEO, a £250,000 position, via social media. Using the hashtag #NextGreatLeader, applicants will be encouraged to send in their CV or LinkedIn profile and complete a set of challenges on social sites including Twitter, Pinterest and Vine, to display their ability to do the job.
Wayne Rooney’s sponsored tweet for Nike escapes sanctions from ASA
A tweet by Wayne Rooney, shown below, escaped sanction last week from the UK’s ASA. Though it appears to have been sponsored by Nike, the ASA ruled that it was clear enough that this was the case. Though at risk of being sanctioned because it did not say #ad or #client anywhere in the tweet, it was deemed acceptable, in that the mention of @NikeFootball was as clear an indicator as either of those. The tweet has since been deleted.
Angry customer uses promoted tweets to criticise British Airways
A Twitter user, who goes by the handle @HVSVN and is thought to be an Illinois businessman, last week used a number of promoted tweets to criticise airline British Airways for losing his bag. Once the campaign came to an end, he revealed that the tweets, some of which are shown below, came to a total cost of $1,000.
— (@HVSVN) September 2, 2013
— (@HVSVN) September 2, 2013