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BizReport : Social Marketing : March 12, 2012

How social is changing the ad game

Blogging continues to be a leading social networking activity, but the social space in general is opening to new ways for brands and advertisers to engage with consumers. The number of blogs 'out there' has skyrocketed over the past five years - but what do social ads offer brands?

by Kristina Knight

In 2006, notes NM Incite, they tracked just over 35 million blogs. In 2011, they tracked more than 173 million blogs. These blogs are written by everyone from moms to brands to authors to students. More than half of bloggers are parents with kids under age 18 and one-third are 'mom-bloggers'.

And while they're blogging they are also checking with social networks. The question is are these bloggers - who are very active on social networks - also useful to brands?

Blogger, the leading blog hosting website, is second in the social networking category only to Facebook, finds the report. And Facebook is pushing engagement levels to new highs. Just last week the social network unveiled a new ad component that could help brands engage.

According to data from NielsenWire ad recall was higher for ads released in the social space than for non-social ads. This could be because most respondents to a 2011 survey (76%) said they 'most trusted' recommendations from personal acquaintances. While the bulk of social network connections may be more 'acquaintance' than 'friend', these connections are still influencing the consumer base.

According to Experian Hitwise the top-visited websites (Week ending March 3, 2012) was Facebook (8.64% visit share), followed by Google at an 8.39% share. As for the social networks, Facebook, YouTube and Twitter ranked as the top three while newcomer Pinterest climbed to number four.

Tags: Experian Hitwise, NielsenWire, NMIncite, social marketing, social network trends, social networks, social networks ads

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