The Eric Qualman video, I thought, was a must watch, and here I’ve taken a look at the changes to a few of the facts/statements he makes since 2011, but with focus on the UK rather than globally. Social Media influences our daily lives, consumes our time and effects the decisions we make. Is it only for the young? Not according to our own National Office of Statistics.
Erik Qualman’s quote, ‘We don’t have a choice whether we do social media, the question is how well we do it’ when referring to business is becoming more and more relevant foa all businesses, not just the huge brand names. Figures from Fanalyzer show 36 million uk based Facebook users which represents 58% of the population. The age groups of 18-24 and 25-34 are the biggest user groups.It's very likely that circa 50% of your cutomers, if you have a business or work for one, are Facebook users.
If you’re a business owner reading this, how many of your customers fall into these age groups?
However looking at ‘now’ is limiting. Do you intend to be in business for the next 10 years? The users in the next largest group (13-17 year olds) will very likely be in your businesses customer age range within ten years.
Tomorrow’s customers are influenced today, Social Media is being leveraged by businesses now to attract new customers and at the same time influence, make sound bites with, open relationships with tomorrows customers. Facebook as an example of Social Media certainly has the footfall with nearly 6 out of every 10 UK residents as users, are you missing out on future customers by not letting them know who and where you are now?
The Internet has changed the way people go about their daily lives. Almost three quarters of adults in Great Britain used the Internet everyday (73%) in 2013, with 6 out of every 10 adults (61%) using a mobile phone or portable computer to access the Internet 'on the go'.
Recruitment via Social Media
According to Eric’s video social media isn’t just about recruiting future customers and creating a relationship with existing and new customers. It also appears to be widely used in the recruitment process. The video states 80% of companies, maybe so in the USA but in the UK ACAS published an article in August 2013 referring to research that pointed out that 45% of HR decision makers where using Social media in their work and that 40% said they would make greater use of Social Media in the future. So maybe not in the 80% league but 40% is a substantial figure.
Widening Age Range of Facebook Users
The age range of users is widening but where the video suggests the fastest growing age range in 2011 was 55-65 year old females, the fastest growing demographic on Facebook in 2012 was the 45-54 year old group published on the BufferApp blog.
Word of Mouth will never be the same again!
With massive mobile traffic to Facebook and Twitter, word of mouth has become very very fast and potentially very big! With the video stating that 50% of UK mobile traffic on the internet was for Facebook, the trend continues to be huge. More than a third of the UK population now visit the site every day, and of the daily users some 20 million – 83% – use a smartphone or tablet to check updates on Facebook, the Guardian published in August 2013.
Multi Channel Word of Mouth
Eric’s video refers to YouTube as being the second largest search engine and it looks like it still is. We use our phone to watch videos, whoever would have thought that? YouTube and Viber videos are plastered all over the web, they become embedded in posts on Facebook, messages on Twitter and in blogs like this one. Smartphones make it easier than ever for just about anybody to become their own movie director, actor and production company in a minute or so. Shoot and load up to YouTube!
In 2011 while you watched the video, over 100 hours of video would have been uploaded to YouTube, that’s now over 200 hours uploaded to YouTube while you watch it! Word of Mouth is now multi channel.
But back 0n the subject of ‘word of mouth and a note on bloggers, 34% of which comment on brands and the note on user generated content being 25% of search results. The web is being made by people, people writing blogs like this one, people commenting on Facebook and similar.
I remember when I was a kid my mum telling me that if people spread bad news much quicker than good, which I remember puzzled me at the time but it’s common knowledge that bad news sells newspapers. In this age of Social Media with the average number of Facebook friends for a UK Facebooker being 130 bad news can travel at lightning speed!
Imagine that somebody posts a bad report on a local service, if only 10 of their Facebook friends see the post and comment on it or worse, share it to their own page as a warning to their friends, the numbers can get very big very quickly!
It’s no longer a case one person speaking to another one at a time when they meet or call. Social Media speaks to groups in an instant. In January 2013 The Wall posted an article on Facebooks UK member numbers which said “If you have more than 130 Facebook friends then you are doing well as that is the average number of friends for Britain, while 71% of British smartphone users connect with their friends on Facebook every day.”
It's not rocket science...
7 in 10 People in the UK now own a Smartphone and more than half, 54 per cent, of 54 to 65-year olds now own a smartphone too. It’s not rocket science is it? Just under 1 in 6 of us are on Facebook never mind the other social channels and 70% of us own a smartphone and use it to access Facebook or a Social Channel every day! The question here is simple, should businesses have a say in the conversations? I think they should of course, and that means getting on the Social Networks and getting involved.
The question here is simple, should businesses have a say in the conversations? I think they should of course, and that means getting on the Social Networks and getting involved. With 78% of people trusting peer recommendations Social Media is a platform that must not be ignored. The growth since Eric Qualman’s video and Social Media’s unabated momentum continues to influence how we go about our daily lives. How will you customers discover and purchase your products and services today? Are they able to share your Facebook page or Twitter address? Can they include your web address in their comments? If not, why not?