07.29.10 Bookmark Blues

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06.03.10 So Called Social Media

Thirty-nine million Americans check and use social networking sites several times a day
Source: Arbitron Inc./Edison Research

Here are some facts and statistics on five, popular social media platforms used by businesses:

* 400+ million active users have returned to the site in the last 30 days
* 38.4-years-old, average age of a user
* 55-65-year-old females represent the fastest growing user segment
* 700,000 new users join every day
* If the users were a single nation, they would be the world’s third largest
(after China and India, and more than the U.S.)
* 70% of users are outside the U.S.
* 50% of active users log on daily
* 500 billion minutes are logged by users each month
* 25+ billion pieces of content are shared by users each month
* An average user
– has 130 friends
– is connected with 60 pages, groups and events
– creates 70 pieces of content each month
See also the Viral Blog

* 70 million registered users spanning more than 200 countries and territories
* 44.3-years-old, average age of a user
* 50% of the users are outside the U.S.
* A new user joins every second
* Executives from all Fortune 500 companies are users
* 1.3 million small businesses are represented as users

* 300 million users
* 37.8-years-old, average age of a user
* Every 60 seconds,
20 hours of video is uploaded
* 51% of users visit YouTube weekly or more often
* 52% of 18-34 year-olds share videos often with friends and colleagues
* It is the second-largest search engine in the world
See also the Viral Blog

Blogging + Microblogging
* 133 million blogs since 2002
* 900,000 new blog posts every day
* 70% of Internet users read blogs
* 34% of bloggers post opinions about products and brands
* Many are delivered via Real Simple Syndication (RSS) notification
* Blogger and WordPress, most popular platforms
* Bloggers are 18% more likely to be Facebook users and
140% more likely to be LinkedIn users than other segments

Twitter microblogging + social networking
* 75 million users (Jan. 2010)
* 39.1-years-old, average age of a user
* 5 million tweets per day
* The majority of users visit while at work
* Users are twice as likely to engage with brands than other social network users
* 20% of tweets mention brands
* 66% of Fortune 100 companies are engaging through Twitter
* 51% of active Twitter users follow companies, brands or products on social networks
See also the Viral Blog

* 68 million visitors each month (Jan. 2010)
* 3,238,743 articles
* 78% of its articles are not in English
* 19,879,277 total pages
* Edited by anyone, it does not position itself as authoritative


05.29.10 So Called Social Media: Demographics

Social media and networks are not just for kids. Yes, in the U.S. 27% of people using social networks are under the age of 24.
But, there are more people who are 25+ on social networks and they are using them to make connections and business decisions.

The average social network user is 37-years-old.
The average ages of users of four, popular social media platforms used by businesses include:
Facebook     38.4
Twitter          39.1
LinkedIn       44.3
YouTube      37.8

Here are some other demographics, and sources, that may be of interest:

Make-Up of Adult Internet Population by Generation (U.S.)
Percentage of Total
30%     Gen Y, ages 18-32
23%     Gen X, ages 33-44
22%     Younger Boomers, ages 45-54
13%     Older Boomers, ages 55-63
7%       Silent Generation, ages 64-72
4%       G.I. Generation, ages 73+
Source:  Pew Internet & American Life Project, from 1650 Internet users, Dec. 2008

In the U.S., 221 million people are online, about 71% of the total population.
Source:  eMarketer, Feb. 2010

Across the globe in 2009, two-thirds of the world’s Internet population visit social networking or blogging sites, accounting for almost 10% of all internet time.
Source:  Nielsen, “Global Faces and Networked Places,” March 2009 (PDF)

Average Age of Distribution Across Social Network Sites (U.S.)
Percentage of Total
15%     0-17
9%      18-24
18%     25-34
25%     35-44
19%     45-54
10%     55-64
3%       65+
Source:  Pingdom.com, Feb. 2010

05.27.10 So Called Social Media + Association News

Social media remains the number one topic among my professional conversations and contacts. I’ll take this as a hint that I should post the latest, available statistics for the major social media channels used by businesses and professional associations. Please check back in the coming days for a series of blog entries.

Most recently, I’ve had the pleasure of sharing these statistics, ideas and experiences at in-person meetings, and learning from others’ insights. In May, I enjoyed speaking with several AIA Minnesota committees, including the leaders of Architecture Minnesota, Public Awareness, Small Firm Practice, and AIA Minneapolis.

Here are some of AIA Minnesota’s established and emerging sources in social media:

Threshold Blog

Twitter microblogs


Facebook Groups
·      AIA Minnesota
·      AIA MN Fellows

Facebook Page – AIA MN Emerging Professional Committee

LinkedIn Groups
·       AIA Minnesota
·       AIA Minnesota BIM Breakfast Club
·       COTE – AIA Minnesota Committee on the Environment
·       AIA Minnesota Housing Advocacy Committee

I’ll post an update on AIA Minnesota’s social media success in the coming weeks.

So Called Social Media: Facebook

Personalized pages now have personalized addresses

If you’re using Facebook, now is the time to nab your personalized address. This option went live as of midnight, June 13. I just logged on and, not surprisingly, see that facebook.com/heatherwest was already reserved. I decided to be consistent and registered for facebook.com/heatherwestpr. Honestly, I’m not great about keeping my Facebook info updated more than once a week. Also, I tend toward the personal rather than the professional with my Facebook correspondence. This so-called social media certainly creates an ever-mixing blend of both.

Whether you’re using Facebook for fun or business, I reccomend registering your personalized address. If you did not start using Facebook before May 31, there will be a future date for you to reserve a personal address. Read more on Facebook’s blog.

Tradeshow Thoughts: Architectural Record’s Ad Awards

This month’s Architectural Record (June 2009) highlights the annual Advertising Excellence Awards. As the official publication for the American Institute of Architects, the awards were presented at the AIA 2009 National Convention and Exposition. A full list of winners can be found here: http://www.construction.com/AboutUs/2009/0501pr.asp

Companies that advertised with a full-page or larger during the first quarter qualified for the awards. A jury of nine architects selected the winners and discussed their selections following the awards’ presentation. I had the pleasure of attending this year’s event with several clients among the 250 attendees.

For those of you who could not attend, here are a few notes from the judges’ comments regarding advertising aesthetics:
* Brown is the new green – Anne Fougeron of Fougeron Architecture said, “There’s a lot of sustainability messages out there, and they’re all green. We got it. Now pick another color.”
* Visuals tell the story – Tom Kundig of Olson Sundberg Kundig Allen Architects observed, “Architects are not typically readers. You need to show us.”
* Pitch the right tone – When showing materials related to safety and security, Todd DeGarmo of Studios Architecture liked it when an ad “reminds us, as architects, that we’re dealing with critical issues that can save people’s lives.”
* Respect the relationship – Randy Guillot of OWP/P emphasized that advertisers should respect the readers’ intelligence and not focus solely on selling a product. “You’re really advertising your brand, your company, yourself.”

Beyond advising on well-designed ads, the panelists also shared other thoughts on the information they’re seeking from manufacturers:
* First on the block – Design firm owners want what’s new. Many are looking for product inspiration from beyond U.S. boarders, both online and through international publication subscriptions.
* Dollars and sense – Along with initial purchase costs, architects are increasingly interested in the lifecycle cost implications of building materials.
* Application and analysis – Building information modeling (BIM), coupled with energy analysis data, is an important addition to manufacturers’ product education and services.

New this year for Architectural Record, “user engagement” award categories recognized continuing education, online video and online social media. The winners for these were selected based on traffic volume and voted for online by users.

For a closer look at these award-winning companies’ successful use of online media, I recommend visiting:
* Adobe, Acrobat 9 videos and its Design Center
* General Electric online CES course and appliance Web site
* Lafarge online CES course and its Web site
* Western Red Cedar Lumber Association’s Web site

For more information on Architectural Record, see its Web site and follow their posts on Twitter. For even greater interaction with the publication and its readers, check out the McGraw-Hill Construction online community forums.

For more on the AIA, consider visiting its Web site and conference and events section. You also may want to check out AIA’s YouTube channel. For more online resources and networking opportunities, there are AIA LinkedIn groups and Facebook pages for national and local chapters, as well as Twitter posts through @aianational, @aialobbyist and many others.

Delicate Dance of Self Promotion in Social Networking

Depending on the forum, it’s generally frowned on to overtly promote yourself or your organization when using Twitter and LinkedIn Groups. You wouldn’t join a professional association and attend your first gathering with the goal of only talking about yourself. Networking online involves similar etiquette.

The first step is to listen. From listening, we learn how we can best contribute to the conversation. For some, this may be offering professional insights, opinions and advice. For others, it may be sharing articles, studies and other resources. Often, it’s a mixture.

Once you’re contributing to the conversation and engaging in the dialogue, consider inviting others into the discussion. Promoting your Twitter, LinkedIn or Facebook page not only brings more voices and ideas, it demonstrates that you:
•    Are familiar with these social media networks and can serve as a mentor, or at least as a friendly contact
•    Belong to a community of professionals with diverse skills, talents and experiences
•    Want to share timely, topical information and connect with others who have similar interests

Similarly to promoting your membership in a professional association, consider appropriate opportunities to note your professionally-minded, social media networks. Examples include adding this information to your:
•    Web site
•    Blog
•    Newsletters, e-newsletters and other periodicals
•    Author / speaker bio
•    Presentations and papers
•    Event invitations and signage
•    E-mail signature
•    Business card

Remember that you also can cross-promote one network with another, such as adding a link to your Twitter feed on your LinkedIn profile, or inviting Twitter Followers to join a LinkedIn Group for more in-depth discussion.

More about Twitter
If you have a micro-blog with Twitter and would like to encourage and retain regular readers,
also consider adding your address to online directories such as:
•    wefollow.com
•    twibes.com
•    twibs.com
•    justtweetit.com
•    twellow.com

More about blogs
If you have a traditional blog and would like to encourage and retain regular readers,
also consider:
•    Adding polls and surveys to give readers a reason to return
•    Inviting guest bloggers
•    Featuring Q&A interviews, perhaps as video presentations
•    Soliciting tagged photos and videos, then sharing and promoting the visual collections and portfolios (with credit to the creators)
•    Requesting reciprocity from those in your blog roll
•    Adding your blog to online directories such as blogcatalog.com and to social media listings in traditional media outlets and Web sites
•    Ensuring compatibility with mobile communications
•    Noting in your social media networks when new blog topics are posted, provide a link
•    Join and participate in industry forums and message boards, link your blog to popular threads
•    Make it easy to follow by adding one-click functionality to monitor with RSS feed
•    Make it easy to share with bookmark and forwarding connections such as
Microsoft Live
Mister Wong
Yahoo! Bookmarks
Also see: http://www.doshdosh.com/list-of-social-media-news-websites/