Important Social Media Facts and Statistics You Should Know in 2014

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There was a tipping point last year that has major implications for business and brands. It will impact publishing and marketing strategies and tactics in the future. One of the worlds biggest music stars ignored the traditional mass media product launching process. She bypassed the “normal” mass media release of a radio campaign, multiple TV appearances and retail and consumer brand promotions. Instead she announced it on Instagram to her 8 million followers with the word “Surprise” and proceeded to launch the 14 songs and accompanying 17 videos on iTunes. It was a success and it exceeded the album downloads of the previous album which had used the traditional marketing model. Its a trend that is not going away anytime soon. Build your own networks now! Businesses who are relentless in building a following on social media are in fact creating their own publishing platforms, growing their marketing channels and content distribution networks. It is a digital asset that grows every year. Over time it can can provide huge leverage and marketing independence if done right. So with that in mind let’s have a look at where the major social media networks are up to at the start of 2014. Social web demographics Social media is a blur of tweets, shares and content. No longer is it just used by the young and the restless. It is global and embedded in every corner of the web. So some questions. Which age groups are using social media, what countries are big Pinterest, Instagram, LinkedIn, YouTube, Tumblr, Vine, Slideshare users and what percentage are using mobile to access social media? This is the who and the where of social media users. 72% of all internet users are now active on social media 18-29 year olds have an 89% usage The 30-49 bracket sits at 72% 60 percent of 50 to 60 year olds are active on social media In the 65 plus bracket, 43% are using social media Time spent on Facebook per hour spent online by country. Here are the top three. USA citizens get the top gong at 16% followed by the Aussies at 14 minutes and the Brits at 13 minutes. 71% of users access social media from a mobile device. The paradigm of social media only being used by the younger generation should be put to rest now. Facebook Facebook is still the biggest kid on the block, but there are some pundits predicting that by 2016 Google+ will surpass Facebook on “social sharing”. Here are some of the latest figures to mull over. There are now over 1.15 billion Facebook users One million web pages are accessed using the “Login with Facebook” feature 23 percent of Facebook users login at least 5 times per day 47% of Americans say Facebook is their #1 influencer of purchases 70% of marketers used Facebook to gain new customers Google+ Prying the numbers out of Google for Google+ has always been a challenge. A bit like getting a date with the prettiest girl in the class. Not impossible but it doesn’t happen very often. So what are the latest numbers? There are now over 1 billion with Google+ enabled accounts It has reached 359 million monthly active users Google+ is growing at 33% per annum. The 45 to 54 year old bracket increased its usage on Google+ by 56% since 2012 When you consider that Google+ has only been around for less than three years, then it is a success on many levels. So Google must be happy with with its investment, which is north of $500 million that it initially invested in Google+ Twitter Twitter has to be taken seriously. Last year it took off its short pants and become a public company. So what is happening in the Twittersphere? There are now over 550 million registered users 34% of marketers use Twitter to successfully generate leads Twitter was the fastest growing network with a 44% growth from 2012-2013 215 million monthly active users Twitter has also made some changes in the last few months that has made it more visual and engaging. Business should no longer be ignoring the 140 character pip squeak. The others We haven’t mentioned some important social media channels. These include. Pinterest, Instagram, LinkedIn, YouTube, Tumblr, Vine, Slideshare and many others. This year expect the visual social media networks to hit more home runs. Keep an eye on these two: Pinterest with 20 million active monthly users Instagram with 150 million active monthly users. Here is an Infographic from Search Engine Journal that provides a visual medium for the social media facts and statistics you should know in 2014. Social Media Facts and statistics you need to know

Social Media Facts and statistics you need to know

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An Insider’s Guide to Social Contest Platforms

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Mark Zuckerberg, founder and CEO of Facebook

Mark Zuckerberg, founder and CEO of Facebook (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Image representing Piqora as depicted in Crunc...

Image by None via CrunchBase

English: A collage of an image modified with 1...

English: A collage of an image modified with 16 different Instagram filters (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

English: a man during the 2011 Egyptian protes...

English: a man during the 2011 Egyptian protests carrying a card saying “Facebook, #jan25, The Egyptian Social Network” illustrating the vital role played by social networks in initiating the uprising. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

An Insider’s Guide to Social Contest Platforms


One of the best ways for brands to garner visibility on the social Web is with promotions like contests and sweepstakes. The rules and regulations of social networks, however, can turn this fun task into a rather large headache. For instance, Pinterest recently announced updates to its Acceptable Use Policy that put numerous restrictions on brands running contests and sweepstakes on the image-based social network. One of the rules prohibits brands from running contests that require participants to Pin from a specific selection, like a website or a list of pins. Conversely, brands on Facebook cannot ask their audience to share promotions on personal Timelines (including their own) as a way to enter a contest. That being said, staying compliant with social network rules is actually just the tip of the iceberg. Brands must also take into consideration how they will track contest entries, host contest terms and conditions and announce winners. Luckily, there are a variety of platforms on the ‘Net that can ease the social promotion process – helping brands with everything from the content landing page to their marketing. Learn more about these platforms and their features below:


Wishpond

Supports Contests On: Facebook+ Brands can run a variety of social promotions via Wishpond’s Contest Apps on their Facebook Pages, including contests for Pinterest and Instagram. This means, for example, that brands can create a Pin-to-Win contest that is actually hosted on Facebook. Aside from multi-channel contests, it is important to note that Wishpond’s robust Contest Apps are compatible with mobile devices, are compliant with Facebook guidelines, can be embedded on websites, enable brands to collect email addresses from participants and can even require participants to Like a page in order to enter a contest.


Piqora

Supports Contests On: Pinterest and Instagram Piquora supports contests and sweepstakes on image-based social networks Pinterest and Instagram. With Pinterest, brands can see which pins are most engaging, as well as view all participants and their eligibility in a single dashboard. The platform supports a variety of promotion types and provides templates so users can customize their contest landing pages. Brands can also launch Instagram hashtag contests with Piqora, which can help users grow their community and get discovered on the social network. Additionally, marketers can create customizable mobile-friendly landing pages for their Instagram contests and can monitor participation through an automated tracking dashboard.


Votigo

Supports Contests On: Facebook, Twitter, Vine, YouTube, Instagram, Pinterest The Votigo social marketing platform supports contests on most of the ’Net’s most popular social networks. Brands can leverage the platform to launch integrated Twitter, Facebook and Instagram contests, YouTube video contests, custom Instagram promotions and more. By integrating multiple channels into social promotions, brands can maximum their exposure and engagement.


Statigram

Supports Contests On: Instagram Brands can grow their Instagram following by launching photo contests through Statigram. In order to launch a contest with this platform, brands simply need to fill out a form and upload their Terms & Conditions. Then, the contest is promoted in Statigram’s contest directory and can be intertwined into a brand’s Facebook Page. Brands also have the ability to moderate contest entries, monitor contest performance and can announce winners and prizes on their contest page.


ShortStack

Supports Contests On: Facebook ShortStack enables brands to create apps for Facebook contests, promotions and sweepstakes. Through the platform, brands can store entry data, implement voting and entry restrictions, as well as allow fans to enter promotions via their Instagram feed. Moreover, brands can also launch user-generated contests, where fans upload videos and photos to be voted on.


These are far from the only platforms that brands can leverage to launch contests. Has your brand found success with a different platform? Let us know in the Comments Section below.

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3 COMMENTS

DennisR 11-20-2013 9:39 PM Great article. Keep it up. I would like to share another product. The <a href=”http://www.360photocontest.com”>360 Photo contest</a> online software solution has been helping non-profit organizations raise money and engage their market in an easy-to-use online photo contest since 2005. As a leading Donate to Vote solution, the solution has helped Orvis, HSUS and hundreds of others raise nearly $3 million in donations for their non-profit organizations.

Lisa Kaslyn, Prosper Communications 11-20-2013 10:14 PM Perfect timing!  I was just agonizing over putting together a Pinterest contest without stepping on a landmine — thanks so much for the great resources.  Keep them coming!

DennisR 11-20-2013 10:15 PM Sorry for the bad html link. Pls disregard previous post. Great article. Keep it up. I would like to share another product. The 360 Photo contest [http://www.360photocontest.com] online software solution has been helping non-profit organizations raise money and engage their market in an easy-to-use online photo contest since 2005. As a leading Donate to Vote solution, the solution has helped Orvis, HSUS and hundreds of others raise nearly $3 million in donations for their non-profit organizations.