Posts Tagged ‘Pinterest’

87 More Vital Social Media Marketing Facts and Stats for 2012

Tuesday, October 16th, 2012

Though social media marketing is now used in about 90% of companies, techniques, platforms and best practices continue to evolve.  Should you include Pinterest in your mix? Increase use of video marketing? Is blogging coming back or trailing off? What will likely be the hot trends in social media over the next couple of years?

More Social Media Stats for 2012Marketers have questions, this post has answers: 87 vital social media and online marketing statistics covering everything from how executives and large companies are using social media for marketing, customer service and recruiting to fresh stats on the leading social media platforms to search, email, content and mobile marketing trends.

The recent 72 Fascinating Social Media Stats post on JeffBullas.com was one of my post popular guest posts ever, so here is an entirely new set of social media stats, facts and research findings.

Social Media Stats and Demographics

1. Social media accounts for only 16% of customer engagement today, but is expected to increase to 57%—the second-most used channel, behind only face to face interaction—within five years. (Marketing Pilgrim)

2. 30% of the world’s entire population is now online, and social networking is the most popular and time consuming online activity—with users spending more than one fifth (22%) of their time engaging on social media channels. This means that more than 250 million tweets and 800 million Facebook status updates are now published every single day. (MindJumpers)

3. Brazilians have the highest number of online friends of any country, averaging 481 friends per user, while the Japanese average only 29 friends. (MindJumpers)

4. 56% of Americans have a profile on at least one social networking site. And it’s not just millenials; 55% of those aged 45-54 have at least one social network profile. (Convince & Convert)

5. Social networks and blogs In the U.S reach nearly 80% of active U.S. Internet users and represent the majority of Americans’ time online. (MediaPost)

6. 60% of people who use three or more digital means of research for product purchases learned about a specific brand or retailer from a social networking site. 48% of these consumers responded to a retailer’s offer posted on Facebook or Twitter. (MediaPost)

7. 90% of marketers now use social networks in their marketing efforts, but growth has plateaued; the figure was 89% in 2011. (eMarketer)

8. Half of all social media users are between 25 and 44 years old, but the age distribution varies widely across social networks. Reddit and Tumblr are among the “youngest” networks, with half or more of users under 35 years old. Twitter is about in the middle (55% of users age 35 or older) while 65% of Facebook users are over 35 (didn’t this start with college students?) and LinkedIn is the “oldest” network, with 79% of users age 35 and older. (Pingdom)

9. Women tend to be somewhat more present and active on social media than men, though the shares vary widely by site. Men tend to dominate on technical sites (e.g., Slashdot is almost 90% guys); LinkedIn is close to a 50-50 split; Twitter and Facebook are both about 40% male / 60% female; and women account for almost 90% of Pinterest users. (Pingdom)

10. Social media and blogs reach 80% of all U.S. Internet users. 91% of experienced social marketers see improved website traffic due to social media and 79% are generating more quality leads. (Business2Community)

11. 90% of companies with 100 or more employees use social media in their marketing mix. 83% use Facebook and 53% are on Twitter, though that gap is expected to narrow by 2014 due to rapid growth in Twitter use. (eMarketer)

Social Media in the Enterprise

12. Just 23% of Fortune 500 companies maintain an active blog, vs. 37% of Inc. 500 firms. (V3 Integrated Marketing)

13. 35% of the top 100 Fortune 500 companies have a corporate blog compared to 14 percent of those Fortune 500 companies in the bottom 300-500 of the category, i.e., top companies devote more attention to their corporate blogs than those in the bottom of the pack.  (V3 Integrated Marketing)

14. 62% of Fortune 500 companies have an active Twitter account, while 58% maintain a corporate Facebook page. (V3 Integrated Marketing)

15. Looking at five leading social networks (Twitter, Facebook, YouTube, Google+ and Pinterest), Fortune 100 company names are mentioned more than 10 million times per month. (Digital Buzz Blog)

16. The average Fortune 100 company is mentioned nearly 56,000 times per month On Twitter. (Digital Buzz Blog)

17. 87 of the Fortune 100 companies are now active on at least one social network. 82 use Twitter, 75 have a Facebook page, 50 are on Google+ and 25% use Pinterest. (Digital Buzz Blog)

18. To accommodate different product lines, business units and geographies, the average Fortune 100 company now maintains 10 official corporate Twitter accounts, 10 Facebook pages and eight YouTube channels. (Digital Buzz Blog)

19. Fortune 500 companies tend to be antisocial. Less than half of Fortune 500 businesses provide a link to their Facebook profile or Twitter handle on the Contact Us page of their Web sites. About 27% of consumer-facing Fortune 500 corporations do not list social media channels on their Web site home page, 89% do not list an e-mail address on their site, and 13% don’t list a phone number on their Contact Us page. (MediaPost)

Social Media Use in the C-Suite

20. 71% of consumers say that CEO participation in social media leads to improved brand image. (41 Stories)

21. Only 3.2% of Fortune 500 (largest companies) CEOs have a Twitter account compared with 17% of Inc. 500 (fastest-growing companies) CEOs. (41 Stories)

22. 52% of CEOs who are active in social media say that it helps their companies rise in search rankings, and 48% say that social media has generated qualified sales leads.  (41 Stories)

23. Though 94% of corporations use social media in some way and 58% of executives acknowledge that social media is useful for lead generation and developing brand loyalty, 70% of CEOs have no presence on any social network. 26% are on LinkedIn, 8% have a Facebook page and just 4% use Twitter. (Business Insider)

24. This is the case even though 82% of buyers say they are more likely to trust a company whose top executive is active on social media, and 81% of employees believe that social CEOs are better leaders. (Business Insider)

Social Media and Human Resources

25. 40% of organizations have a formal social media policy, and 56% of those policies include a statement regarding the organization’s right to monitor social media usage. More than a third (39%) of companies monitor their employees social media use on company-owned computers and handheld devices. (Resume Bear)

26. 92% of recruiters use social media to find new candidates, up from 82% in 2010. And 73% now say they have successfully hired through social media, up significantly from just 58% two years ago. (Ragan.com)

27. Not surprisingly, LinkedIn is the most popular social network among recruiters, with 93% using it. 66% use Facebook while 54% utilize Twitter. More dramatically, 89% of recruiters say that LinkedIn has produced at least one successful hire for them, compared to 25% who say the same of Facebook and just 15% who’ve had recruiting success with Twitter. (Ragan.com)

Facebook Stats

28. 20% of all pageviews on the web are on Facebook. (Jeff Bullas)

29. Half of all Facebook users use it on mobile devices, at least occasionally. (Jeff Bullas)

30. More than 500 million people log in to Facebook each day, and they collectively post 3.2 billion likes and comments. (Jeff Bullas)

31. Social media fatigue? Though 20% of Facebook users say they check in on the social network once or twice per day, 52% plan to spend less time there in the future. (SodaHead)

32. 73% of users believe that another social network will eclipse Facebook. (SodaHead)

Twitter Facts

33. Twitter attracts one million new users per day. (Jeff Bullas)

34. Of Twitter’s 165 million users, half access Twitter on mobile devices at least occasionally.  (HubSpot)

35. 53% of Twitter users have been a member for less than a year, compared to just 19% for Facebook. (Convince & Convert)

36. 76% of Twitter users are active tweeters, up from 47% in 2010. (Convince & Convert)

37. Want to get retweeted more often? Research shows that keywords which increase the likelihood of retweeting include “please,” “thank you,” “Twitter,” “social media” and “you.” Words to avoid include “lol,” gonna,” “hey,” “tired,” “work” and “bored.” (iMedia Connection)

38. Twitter users now post 340 million tweets per day, or roughly a billion tweets every three days. (Digital Buzz Blog)

LinkedIn Statistics

39. Two news users join LinkedIn every second.  (Jeff Bullas)

40. 75 of the Fortune 100 companies use LinkedIn in their corporate hiring process.  (HubSpot)

YouTube and Video Marketing Trends

41. YouTube is the third-most-visited site on the web, with two billion views per day. (Jeff Bullas)

42. YouTube use accounts for 10% of all traffic on the Internet. (Jeff Bullas)

43. 76% of marketers said they planned to increase use of video and YouTube in 2012.  (HubSpot)

44. There are 1.5 million business-related searches on YouTube each day, and 75% of senior executives say they watch work-related videos at least weekly. (Earnest B2B)

Blogging Stats

45. Companies that blog have 434% more indexed pages. And companies with more indexed pages generate far more leads from search.  (Search Engine Journal)

46. The very first blogs appeared in 1998, and Blogger.com was launched in 1999. By 2006, there were more than 50 million blogs in existence. (HubSpot)

47. Today, there are more than 158 million blogs (though only about 70 million are active). (Spin Sucks)

48. B2C companies who blog regularly see an 88% increase in median monthly leads and B2B companies who blog see a 67% increase in leads.  (V3 Integrated Marketing)

49. Roughly 60% of business blogs are updated at least twice per week. (Marketing Charts)

50. Another study found that while 60% of businesses have a blog, only 35% of those (i.e., 21% of all businesses) actively maintain them. (New Media Expo Blog)

51. The two most popular blogging platforms are WordPress (used for 43% of all blogs) and Blogger (35%). Surprised it’s that close. (New Media Expo Blog)

Content Marketing Findings

52. The most popular forms of content marketing for B2B companies are social media excluding blogs (79%) and article posting (78%). 51% maintain blogs, 42% conduct webinars and webcasts, and 41% produce videos. Just 11% use mobile content and only 9% create eBooks. (Earnest B2B)

53. However, 71% of B2B marketers view in-person events as effective while only 31% say the same about social media excluding blogs. (Earnest B2B)

54. Relevance is critical is content marketing. 45% of consumers have unsubscribed from emails due to irrelevant content, and on the B2B side, IT buyers say that 58% of vendor content is not relevant to them, and that this lack of relevance reduces the chance of closing a sale by 45%. (MarketingSherpa)

Search Engine Optimization (SEO) and Search Facts

55. 70% of the links search users click on are organic. (This is an overall average, however, and the share of clicks on paid results is considerably higher for many commercially oriented searches.) (Search Engine Journal)

56. 46% of all searches are for information about products or services. (HubSpot)

57. 75% of searchers never scroll past the first page of results (which also means of course that 25% do).  (Search Engine Journal)

58. 93% of online experiences (including b2b and considered purchases) begin with a search engine. (Search Engine Journal)

59. Half of all local searches are performed on mobile devices.  (HubSpot)

60. 66% of new customers use search and online research to find local businesses.  (HubSpot)

61. 21% of all time spent online is spent on web searches. (MindJumpers)

62. It’s probably no surprise that the big three search engines (Google, Bing and Yahoo!) are among the five most-visited sites on the Internet. But consider that AOL is #7 and Ask is #10, meaning that…five of the top 10 most-visited sites on the web are search engines. (MindJumpers)

63. B2B companies that maintain active content (e.g., bloogging) and SEO programs increased their total website traffic, on average, by 25% in the past year, while those who neglected SEO (either never did it or did SEO only as a one-time effort at site launch) experienced an average 15% decline in overall visits. (Webbiquity)

64. How big is the SEO industry? Well, there are 863 million websites globally that mention “SEO.” There are 9.1 million searches conducted including the acronym each month, with the top two phrases being “SEO services” and “SEO company.” More than 60,000 Twitter users include “SEO” in their bios, there have been 13 million blog posts published that include “SEO” in the title, and Amazon.com carries almost 2,700 different books about SEO. (Search Engine Journal)

65. While it’s vital for marketers to integrate search and social in terms of their strategies, it turns out consumers don’t like the two actually mixed in search results. 62% say they do not want social results included on search engine result pages (SERPs), while just 19% do. (Search Engine Watch)

66. If social results are going to be included on SERPs, consumers prefer Bing’s layout (social off to the right side) rather than Google’s layout (social mixed with organic results), 63% to 37%. However, by a 5-to-3 margin, consumers preferred Google’s display of universal search results. (Search Engine Watch)

Search Engine Marketing (SEM) and Online Advertising

67. Every marketer knows that click-through rates on banner ads are very low. Why? 31% of users say they are worried if they click on an ad that their behavior will be tracked, while 57% fear they will receive spam from advertisers. (Get Elastic)

68. The average person is more likely to apply and be accepted by Harvard or be dealt a full house in poker than to click on a banner ad. (Get Elastic)

69. There are more tweets each month that include “PPC” (282,000) than there are that include “SEO” (248,000), though there are most searches on and blog posts written about SEO. (Search Engine Journal)

70. Click-through rates (CTR) on search ads for keyword phrases with “high commercial intent’ are up to 600 times greater than average CTR for ads on a typical Facebook page. (e-Strategy Trends)

Mobile Marketing Statistics

71. There are about four billion mobile phones in use. Of those, 27% (1.08 billion) are smartphones.  (HubSpot)

72. 50% of all smartphone users use their devices to search the web, and 49% use them for social networking. (HubSpot)

73. 8% of web hits worldwide are from mobile phones. In the US, 25% of mobile Web users are mobile-only. Further, 80% of this traffic will leave if your website isn’t optimized for mobile–a good case for having a mobile-friendly website. (Heidi Cohen)

74. Do some research and consider carefully before investing in design and creation of a mobile app for your business. A quarter of all mobile apps are used only once. (Heidi Cohen)

75. 74% of Americans are unfamiliar with the concept of checking in to a location via mobile device, and only 3% have ever checked in. (Convince & Convert)

76. One in four employees use personal smartphones at work. (Earnest B2B)

77. Almost 40% of social media users access social media content from their mobile phone at least occasionally. (MediaPost)

78. Mobile and video are the two hottest growth areas in marketing. 17% of marketers say they’ve been using mobile marketing for less than a year, while another 17% plan to start using it in the coming year. The figures are 14% and 10%, respectively, for video marketing. (eMarketer)

79. In a July 2012 survey, 26% of respondents said they were interested in the iPhone5, while 74% said they were “over it”–just not that intrigued by another new Apple device. (SodaHead)

Email Marketing Facts

80. Nearly one billion Internet users are on Facebook. But 3.1 billion use email. (HubSpot)

81. Less than one out of five email marketers include social sharing links in their emails. Of those, 91% include a Facebook link while nearly half include Twitter.  (HubSpot)

82. 19% of all time spent online is spent on reading and responding to emails. (MindJumpers)

Other Social and Marketing Stats

83. Instagram tripled its user base from 10 million in September 2011 to 30 million by April 2012. Its Android app had one million downloads on the day it was released. (Jeff Bullas)

84. 97% of Pinterest’s Facebook “likes” are from women.  (Jeff Bullas)

85. Google+ adds 625,000 new users each day.  (Jeff Bullas)

86. 67% of Google+ users are male.  (Jeff Bullas)

87. A majority of marketers worldwide say that less than half of all the analytics data they collect is actually useful for decision-making, and 34% say analytics are not integrated at all with their business plans. (eMarketer)

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33 (of the) Best Social Media Guides, Tips and Resources of 2012 So Far

Tuesday, August 28th, 2012

Given the widespread adoption of social media marketing practices, the “if” and “when” questions seemed to have now been resolved by most midsized and larger companies (and a lot of small companies as well).

Many social media marketing questions remainHowever, as the posts and articles highlighted below show, plenty of questions remain, such as how much should we budget for social media? What’s the best process for developing a social media marketing plan? How should we staff for this and train current employees to contribute? How do we demonstrate the ROI of social efforts?

Find the answers to those questions and many more here in almost three dozen of the best social media tips, how-to guides, lists and reports of 2012 so far.

Social Media Marketing Tips, Tactics & Techniques

Dr. Seuss’ 7 social media lessons by Ragan’s PR Daily

The delightful Heidi Cohen presents seven social media marketing tips in Dr. Seuss style, among them “‘Today you are you, that is truer than true. There is no one alive who is youer than you.’ Be yourself on social media platforms and reveal your true essence…Show who you are with your avatar and profiles. Include information that proves you’re human.”

9 social media hacks you need to embrace now by iMedia Connection

Astutely noting that “Social media isn’t inexpensive, it’s just different expensive. To do it well requires a tremendous time commitment, and regardless of what your life and lifestyle entails, the time you spend on social comes with an opportunity cost price tag,” Jay Baer offers six tips for getting more done in social media in less time, such as listening to podcasts while commuting or working out, and utilizing tools like Buffer and If This Then That.

Five Types of Social Media Influencers by Intelegia

Raymond Morin presents both Klout’s 12-type matrix of social influencer types as well as Lisa Barone’s simpler model of five types, including the networker (“one who has the biggest contact list and found on all platforms. He or she who knows everybody and everybody knows him or her”) and the sharer (“one who distributes information to the bloggers to journalists through the specialized webzines. He or she usually amplifies messages”).

Brands Face Stream Fatigue as Consumers Look Beyond Gimmicks in Social Networks by Brian Solis

“Businesses are interacting with consumers to socialize rather than learn about customer expectations to in turn, deliver tangible value, improve product experiences, and invest in long-term relationships,” writes Brian Solis, who then details an experiment by Andrew Blakeley in which he spent a week as a “social consumer.” Blakeley concluded that “the online experience for consumers was undefined or uncharted, leaving consumers to fend for themselves to find relevance within the engagement without any reinforcement to brand value or story.” Don’t be one of those brands.

What Marketing Questions Are Worth Asking in Social Media Listening? by MarketingProfs

David Rabjohns says that the top five questions Fortune 500 companies are asking about social media are:

  • • Where are people talking about my brand?
  • • How should I change my messaging?
  • • How much buzz do I have vs. competition/trend?
  • • How do they feel about us vs. the competition?
  • • Quantify the biggest brand topics.

Why Now Is The Time To Build Your Personal Brand by B2B Marketing Insider

You want loyalty? Get a dog. Michael Brenner notes how recession, downsizing, the end of pensions and other developments (the accelerating pace of technological change) have made the implicit employment “contract” that existed for much of the last century obsolete, and offers four tips for building a brand that will enhance your professional success and influence.

29 Social Media Leaps of Faith by Heidi Cohen

Heidi lists 29 helpful “leaps of faith to help you build your social media presence and activity,” such as building your social media tribe, introducing your connections to each other (where is may be mutually beneficial), and guest blogging.

3 Steps to an Effective Social Media Strategy by Social Media Examiner

Amy Porterfield outlines a “three-step plan designed to help you develop an effective, streamlined road map for social media success,” beginning with an assessment of where you are at today and working through ongoing monitoring, measurement and continual improvement.

How to create and edit articles for Wikipedia by Web Ink Now
***** 5 STARS

Wikipedia is one of the most popular sites on the web, so getting exposure there is incredibly valuable. But the site is not of course, and shouldn’t be, a marketing tool. Content needs to be informational and neutral in tone. David Meerman Scott explains how to properly write for Wikipedia here.

How to Train Employees to Manage Social Media [infographic] by WordPress Hosting SEO

This infographic explains why existing employees may make the best social media managers, how to divide employees into different training groups most appropriate to their skills, and recommendations for handling personal social media use at work.

How To Write Your Social Media Plan in 8 Steps by Social Media Today

Mike Thimmesch lays out an eight-step process for drafting a social media plan, starting with painting “The Picture of The Big Opportunity of Social Media” and finishing with an urgent call to action (“While similar to how you started your plan, you want to finish with some more strident points that create a sense of urgency”).

7 tips to take social to the next level by iMedia Connection

Erick Mott walks through the definitions of and process of creating owned, paid and earned media followed by seven tips for developing and implementing a social plan, among them “Staff up your social media roles with a distributed workforce that can collaborate and perform in real time. Plot where your organization is, which will help inform strategy and budget and hopefully help you secure what you need for the next phase.”

21 Tips to Balance Social Media Addiction, Tweets, Life and Real Work! by The Marketing Nut

Pam Moore supplies 21 tips for keeping the “social” in social media marketing, developing “a plan that includes objectives, goals, and knowing your audience” without spending excessive time (though noting that sometimes such activity will necessarily take longer than you expect). Among her tips: “Use time blocks. If you struggle with controlling your time enjoyed (or wasted) on social media then set time blocks for engaging, writing blog posts and other tactics.”

14 Ways to Build Strategic Relationships With the Who’s Who of Social Media by Copyblogger

Tom Treanor shares 14 “secrets” to building relationships with industry influencers, though he acknowledges the simple truth that “Networking is 98% about being a nice person and having good manners.”

What exactly is a social graph? by Biznology

Writing that “one thing I don’t like (about social media) is that technical people like to make up new fancy words to describe what they make, even if no one knows what they mean,” Mike Moran explains in plain words what a social graph is and what its limitations are.

Social Media Metrics and ROI

101 Examples of Social Business ROI by Dachis Group

Despite the fact that “quantified results in social business and brands willing to stand behind them are difficult to find,” Peter Kim manages to compile a list of more than 100 real-life examples of social media ROI, such as Blendtec (“Viral videos increased company sales +700%”) and Epson (“Reviews drove 98% higher revenue per visitor for Epson”).

The Social Media Metrics That Truly Matter by iMedia Connection

Kent Lewis proposes a matrix model for identifying and monitoring meaningful metrics for your company, based on which platforms are most relevant to your target audience, your objectives and goals for each, and important secondary KPIs to consider.

The Real Secret To The ROI Of Social Media by Social Media Today

Koka Sexton explains why “The real ROI of social media is the moment you realize that you can’t stop the spreading of your content even if you tried. It would be like trying to unpull a trigger…ROI is most importantly the cultivation of relationships and capturing the positive word of mouth recommendations from your community. It’s the gift that keeps on giving.”

CMOs Say Social Media Spending Will Surge 46% in the Next Year by Mack Collier

Mack reports that although spending on social media marketing is set for another year of strong growth, many companies still struggle to measure or prove the ROI, because, in Mack’s words, “shockingly, most customers don’t want to be marketing mouthpieces for brands.” Therefore, transferring traditional value measures from other media won’t work in social networks; that doesn’t mean ROI can’t be measured, it just can’t be measured using the same criteria.

Social Media Facts and Stats

Companies Struggle To Manage Social Media by MediaPost

Mark Walsh reports the findings of an Altimeter Groups study showing that “global corporations are now struggling to manage an average of 178 business-related social media accounts, spanning Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, YouTube and Foursquare, among others…Social media has often been harnessed haphazardly for marketing, sales, customer support and product development. While 70% of businesses said social media efforts met company objectives, only 43% had a formal strategy to address how social will meet specific business goals…(social media management is) exacerbated at a scale CMS didn’t have to deal with (as large) companies typically oversee 39 Twitter accounts, 32 blogs, 30 Facebook pages and 29 LinkedIn accounts.”

Social Media Jobs Salary Guide by Onward Search

Promising “a comprehensive look at the best US job markets, the most in-demand social media jobs, and the corresponding salary ranges for each profession,” this informative infographic reveals findings such as that Minneapolis ranks #13 in number of social media job postings (New York is #1), the highest salaries are generally paid in San Jose, and the most common position is content writer.

Digital Smackdown: “digital dinosaurs vs. digital natives” by Forbes

Reporting that “77% (of consumers) are more likely or much more likely to buy from a company whose CEO uses social media to clearly define company values and leadership principles (and) 94% say C-suite social media participation enhances a brand image,” according to a recent Brandfog survey, Rhonda Hurwitz advises senior C-level executives to learn social media tools instead of over-delegating.

Search and Social

Using Social Buttons to Enhance Search Engine Optimization by Practical eCommerce

It’s no secret that social signals are playing an increasing role in search engine rankings, but Jill Kocher provides additional detail behind the trend and recommendations for how to capitalize on it.

Social Media Tools

New technologies to manage social by iMedia Connection

Josh Dreller lists almost 200 tools for every aspect of social media marketing from managing multiple social networks, managing Twitter and searching social networks to apps for social analytics, media relations and video/photo sharing.

YouTube Tips & Tactics

Set Up Your YouTube Channel for SEO Success by The YouMoz Blog

Pointing out that “YouTube is now the world’s second largest search engine,” Joel Chudleigh steps through the process of optimizing a YouTube channel for usability and findability, from properly setting up your profile and editing your channel to sharing videos through social networks and measuring results.

B2B And A Resistance To Video Marketing by B2Bbloggers

Observing that “B2B companies have long resisted video as a means of marketing, but that medium is gradually becoming more accepted,” Chris Peterson provides half a dozen valuable tips for technical optimization as well as four practical suggestions for producing effective, non-cheesy b2b videos.

Pinterest Tactics & Techniques

Why Pinterest Should Be of Interest to Brands by MarketingProfs

Amanda DiSilvestro explains how Pinerest works, how to get started with it, and four ways that brands can benefit from the visual social sharing site, including “Visibility and SEO: Every image that is pinned will include a link back to the website where it originated. This helps to spread the word about your company and what your company can offer” (in addition to building links, though these are now no-follow).

10 Tips for Pinterest Search Engine Optimization by ClickZ

Sage Lewis first explains why optimizing for Pinterest is important (e.g., to ” take up greater search engine results pages real estate) then provides 10 optimization tips such as posting original images, giving them search-friendly file names and using keywords in your description.

6 Compelling Reasons You Should Use Pinterest for Marketing by HubSpot

Claiming that Pinterest is “not ‘just another social media site.  This one is different. Pinterest is doing a great job of driving traffic, leads, and sales,” Jesica Meher outlines six benefits of Pinterest, from generating inbound links to integration with existing Twitter and Facebook accounts.

103 Resources For Becoming a Pinterest Expert by KISSmetrics

Zach Bulygo shares more than 100 tips for capitalizing on Pinterest, helpfully arranged in categories like Background and Basics, How-To Articles, Lessons to Learn, Marketing with Pinterest, and Similar Sites.

Why I’ve Resisted Pinterest by MediaPost

The brilliant Ryan DeShazer likely speaks for more marketers than he knows in this thoughtful essay outlining his personal and professional reasons for not yet jumping on the Pinterest bandwagon. Among his personal reasons: “#1 – My guy friends would make fun of me. I’m serious. You will never catch me at a dinner party commenting that, ‘I just pinned the most incredible thing today.’ #2 – This smells like social scrapbooking. I don’t scrapbook. My mother does.”

Tumblr and Google+ Tips & Tactics

How to (Properly) Use Tumblr to Market Your Brand by Search Engine Journal

Writing that “According to comScore’s State of the U.S. Social Network Market, Tumblr is one of the most consistently growing social networks out there…But this is not just about sheer number of visitors. The amount of time that visitors spend on Tumblr averages around 2.4 hours a month, making it only second to Facebook in terms of user engagement,” Neil Patel explains what Tumblr is, who uses it, how to get brand exposure there and how to use Tumblr to drive traffic to your other social media platforms.

10 Brands Who Stand Out on Google+ and How They Do It by GigCoin

The prolific Debbie Hemley showcases 10 major brands (including ESPN, Wired magazine, Starbucks, Pepsi and Android) that stand out from the crowd on Google+ and what makes each brand page remarkable.

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79 Remarkable Social Media Marketing Facts and Statistics for 2012

Saturday, August 18th, 2012

Note: a slightly shorter version of this compilation was recently published as a guest post on Jeff Bullas’ blog.

Social media and inbound marketing techniques have been a boon for marketers. Not only do leads generated through social and content marketing cost half as much as traditional outbound-generated leads (see below), they also close at higher rate (again, see below).

Social Media Marketing Facts and Statistics 2012And social media isn’t just about lead generation of course. While prospective buyers are using search and social to research products and services before making purchase decisions, marketers and PR professionals can use those same tools to research buyer wants and needs. And their competition. And…even social media itself.

Which brings us to this post. Wondering which social network is most effective at generating b2b leads? What marketing technique generates leads with the highest close ratio? What the best day of the week is for Facebook posting? Which U.S. city produces the largest share of “pins”on Pinterest?

Find the answers to those questions and many, many more in this collection of 72 fascinating social media marketing facts and stats for 2012.

Social Media / Social Networking

1. The average midsize or large company (1000 employees or more) has 178 “social media assets” (Twitter handles, employee blogs, etc.)–yet only 25% of companies offer social business training to their employees. (Marketingeasy)

2. B2b marketers believe social media is critical to organic search success. Marketers rate social media as the second-most imporant factor (64%) in search, behind only strong content (82%). (BtoB Magazine)

3. Although Facebook is the most important social media lead generation tool for b2c marketers (with 77% saying they had had acquired a customer through Facebook, compared to 60% for a company blog), among B2B companies, LinkedIn was the most effective, with 65% having acquired a customer through the professional network, followed by company blogs (60%), Facebook (43%), and Twitter (40%). (Marketing Charts)

4. The best way to “go viral” is to engage millions of users, each of whom share through small networks. “Online sharing, even at viral scale, takes place through many small groups, not via the single status post or tweet of a few influencers…Content goes viral when it spreads beyond a particular sphere of influence and spreads across the social web via ordinarily people sharing with their friends…the median ratio of Facebook views to shares (is) merely 9-to-1. This means that for every Facebook share, only nine people visited the story. Even the largest stories on Facebook are the product of lots of intimate sharing—not one person sharing and hundreds of thousands of people clicking.” (Ad Age)

5. LinkedIn generates more leads for b2b companies than Facebook, Twitter or blogs. Yet only 47% of b2b marketers say they are actively using LinkedIn vs. 90% on Facebook. (Social Media B2B)

6. One-third of global b2b buyers use social media to engage with their vendors, and 75% expect to use social media in future purchases processes. (Social Media B2B)

7. “Best in class” b2b companies are significantly more likely than average firms to integrate their social media efforts with their email marketing (65% vs. 51%), SEO (61% vs. 49%) and webinars (47% vs. 31%). (MarketingProfs)

8. As for “best in class” practices, 51% of best-in-Class companies use website social sharing tools, compared to 36% of average firms while 49% use keyword-based social media monitoring, compared with 39% of their more average peers. (MarketingProfs)

9. Top executives need to be involved in social media. 77% of buyers say they are more likely to buy from a company whose CEO uses social media. 94% said C-suite social media participation enhances a brand image. And 82% of employees say they trust a company more when the CEO and leadership team communicate via social media. (eMarketer)

10. 70% of marketers plan to increase the number of different social platforms they use in 2012. (ClickZ)

User Experience

Want more registrations on your website? Consider offering a social login (i.e., the ability for visitors to register at and log in to your site using one of their existing social network profiles rather than creating a new login):

11. 86% of people say they are bothered by the need to create new accounts at websites. (MarketingSherpa)

12. 77% responded that social login is “a good solution that should be offered.” (MarketingSherpa)

13. 21% of “best in class” companies use social sign-in, compared to 8% of average-performing firms. (MarketingProfs)

Lead Nurturing

14. Only 27% of B2B leads are sales-ready when first generated. This makes lead nurturing essential for capitalizing on the other 73%. But 65% of B2B marketers have not established lead nurturing campaigns. (MarketingSherpa)

15. SEO-driven leads have the highest lead-to-close rate (15%) among common lead generation sources. Paid search leads average a 7% rate, while outbound marketing leads (e.g., direct mail, telemarketing) close at a 2% rate. (Econsultancy)

Facebook

16. B2C Facebook interaction is 30% higher than average on Sundays. (Mindjumpers)

17. Though nearly every large charity and university in America has a Facebook presence, less than 60% of the Fortune 500 do. (Mindjumpers)

18. 95% of Facebook wall posts are not answered by brands. (Mindjumpers)

19. Though Facebook continues to add users, U.S. members are becoming less active there. Between mid-2009 and late 2011, “messaging friends declined 12%, searching for new contacts fell 17% and joining a group of Facebook users dropped 19% in the U.S.” (MediaPost)

20. 70% of local businesses use Facebook.The U.S. has the largest number of Facebook users. The country with the second-largest Facebook population: Indonesia.  (Jeff Bullas)

21. Facebook is the leading source of referred social media traffic to websites, at 26%. Twitter is second at 3.6%. (Pooky Shares)

22. Facebook marketing is a specialized skill. For those looking to outsource this function to a professional consultant, expect to pay $500-$1,500 for initial page setup and anywhere from $1,000 to $3,000 per month for ongoing content management and curation. (Mack Collier)

23. 52% of consumers say they have stopped following a brand on Facebook because the information it posted had become “too repetitive and boring.” (SMI)

Twitter

24. There are now roughly 100 million active Twitter users (those who log in at least once per day). (Mindjumpers)

25. 34% of marketers have generated leads using Twitter, and 20% have closed deals. (Mindjumpers)

26. 40% of Twitter users rarely post anything but primarily consume content there. 55% access Twitter via a mobile device. (Mindjumpers)

27. 92% of retweets are based on “interesting content.” Only 26% are due to inclusion of “please RT!” in the tweet. (Mindjumpers)

28. Twitter now has 200 million users, including 8% of the U.S. population. About one-quarter of all users are considered “extremely active,” checking in several times per day. (Jeff Bullas)

29. 55% of all Twitter users use the service to share links to news stories, and 53% retweet others. (Jeff Bullas)

30. 77 of the world’s 100 largest companies maintain a corporate Twitter account. But media outlets are the most active users. (Jeff Bullas)

31. Meanwhile, 62% of the Fortune 500 have an active Twitter account. (Business Insider)

32. Most professional consultants charge $500-$1,000 to set up a Twitter account (optimized bio, custom background etc.) and $500-$1,500 per month for ongoing management (dependent on level of activity and amount of content). (Mack Collier)

Google and Google+

33. Google’s search engine is used by 85% of global Internet users every month. (MediaPost)

34. Google+ is expected to reach 400 million users by the end of 2012. It’s membership is 63% male, with the largest cohort in their mid-20s. While the largest block of users by country are in the U.S., the second largest is India. However, only 17% of users are considered “active.” (Jeff Bullas)

35. Google+ is the tool that most marketers (70%) say they want to learn more about in 2012, following by blogging (cited by 59%). (ClickZ)

Pinterest

36. The image-based social network has grown 4,000% in the past six months, now boasts more than 4 million users, and keeps those users engaged: the average Pinterest user spends nearly an hour-and-a-half per month on the site, behind only Facebook and Tumblr. (Jeff Bullas)

37. 83% of Pinterest users are women. In the U.S., the most popular categories are Fashion, Desserts, Clothes and Birthdays. (MediaPost)

38. But in the U.K., the five most popular topics on Pinterest are Venture Capital, Blogging Resources, Crafts, Web Analytics and SEO/Marketing. (Pooky Shares)

39. 22% of all pins come from New York, followed by Los Angeles at 15%. A higher percentage come from Minneapolis (10%) than from San Francisco (8%)–even though Pinterest is based in Palo Alto. (MediaPost)

40. Pinterest is virtually tied with Twitter (at 3.6%) for the amount of referred social traffic it sends to websites. (Pooky Shares)

Tumblr

41. Tumblr grew 900% in 2011 and now has 90 million users. However, just 2% of members account for more than 40% of all traffic. (Jeff Bullas)

42. The five most popular tags for Tumblr posts are GIF, LOL, Fashion, Art and Vintage. The U.S. has the largest share of users, followed by Brazil. (Jeff Bullas)

Mobile Marketing

43. 4.8 billion people now own mobile phones. Just 4.2 billion own a toothbrush. (Mindjumpers)

44. One-third of smartphones globally use the Android OS. (MediaPost)

45. The number of tablets in use in the U.S. rose from 34 million in 2011 to 55 million this year and is expected to reach 108 million by 2015. (TMGmedia)

46. Mobile commerce is projected to ten-fold from 2010 ($3 billion) to 2016 ($31 billion). (TMGmedia)

47. While three-quarters of b2b marketers are aware of the growing importance of mobile devices, only 23% rate mobile search as either “important” or “critical” to their search marketing objectives. (BtoB Magazine)

48. Just 16% of b2b marketers are producing mobile-specific content as part of their content marketing efforts. (Smart Insights)

49. Although the percentage of visits to b2b websites coming from smart phones has increased nearly 50% in the past year, they still represent only about 1 out of every 24 sites visits on average. (Webbiquity)

SEO and Search Marketing

50. 57% of B2B marketers say SEO has the biggest impact on their lead generation goals. (Mindjumpers)

51. Though half of all b2b digital spending is focused on search and most websites are organically optimized, only 65% of b2b marketers have ever used pay-per-click advertising. (BtoB Magazine)

52. Search provides the highest quality leads. According to research by HubSpot, “SEO leads have a 15% close rate, on par with the close rate for direct traffic, and ahead of referrals (9%), paid search (7%), social media (4%), and outbound leads (2%).” (Marketing Charts)

Blogging

53. Social media sites and blogs reach 80% of all U.S. internet users. (Mindjumpers)

54. Social networks and blogs account for 23% of all time spent online — twice as much as gaming. (Mindjumpers)

55. “Increased frequency of blogging correlates with increased customer acquisition, according to…HubSpot. 92% of of blog users who posted multiple times a day acquired a customer through their blog, a figure that decreased to 66% for those who blogged monthly and 43% for those who posted less than monthly.” (Marketing Charts)

56. The most popular frequency for blog posting is weekly (60% of bloggers). Just 10% post daily. (Marketing Charts)

57. Blogs are the single most important inbound marketing tool. “When asked to rank the importance of the services they use, 25% of users rated their company blog as critical to their business, while a further 56% considered them either important (34%) or useful (22%)” for a total of 81%. (Marketing Charts)

58. B2B companies with blogs generate 67% more leads per month on average than non-blogging firms. (Social Media B2B)

59. For those looking to outsource, a professional consultant will generally charge $1,000-$3,000 for setting up a blog, $1,000-$3,000 per month for ongoing content development/editing, and ballpark of $200 for a single guest post. (Mack Collier)

60. The average budget spent on company blogs and social media has nearly doubled in the last two years, and two-thirds of marketers say their company blog is “critical” or “important” to their business, since 57% of businesses have acquired a customer through their company blog. (Business2Community)

61. Only 23% of the Fortune 500 (largest companies) maintained a blog in 2011, while 37% of the Inc. 500 (fastest-growing companies) did so. (Business Insider)

Video and SlideShare

62. 52% of b2b marketers use video as part of their content marketing mix. (Smart Insights)

63. Video production costs vary widely, depending on length, quality, type of content and other factors. High-end animated videos can cost $20,000-$30,000, while simpler interview-type videos can be under $1,000. Common 2- to 3-minute videos with a mix of live action and simple animation typically cost $2,000-$5,000. (Mack Collier)

64. SlideShare draws 60 million visitors per month; but most importantly for b2b marketers, it attracts 3X more traffic from business owners than any other social media site. (Jeff Bullas)

Social Demographics

65. On social networking sites, men and women are about equally willing to share their real names (both about 87%), political and religious affiliation, and the brands they like (~77%), but men are far more likely than women to share their physical address (11% vs. 4%), their current location (35% vs. 20%), their phone number 15% vs. 4%), and their income level (16% vs. 5%). (AllTwitter)

66. Contrary to what you’ve probably been told, longer format video may actually drive higher engagement: “different types of content yield different sharing behaviors. Breaking down video behavior within StumbleUpon, videos viewed between two to three minutes found a spike in sharing out to social media, whereas videos viewed beyond four minutes see direct shares increase by five times. Longer, arguably more involved, content may drive viewers to more intimate sharing routes.” (Ad Age)

Inbound and Content Marketing

67. 90% of b2b marketers do some form of content marketing. 26% of b2b marketing budgets are invested in content, and 60% of b2b marketers say they plan to spend more on content marketing in the coming year. (Smart Insights)

68. The most popular content marketing tactics used by b2b marketers are article posting (used by 79% of b2b marketers), social media excluding blogs (74%), blogs (65%) and enewsletters (63%). Just 10% use virtual conferences. (Smart Insights)

69. The average cost to generate a lead through inbound marketing ($143) is about half the average for outbound marketing ($373). (Econsultancy)

70. Small businesses, on average, spend twice the share of their lead generation budget (43%) on inbound marketing as do large companies (21%). Small organiations spend more than twice as much on social media and 3X as much on blogging as their larger counterparts, while big businesses spend three times as much on trade shows and nearly twice the share of their budget on direct mail as do smaller firms. (Econsultancy)

71. More is (often at least) better. Businesses with 40+ different landing pages/offers generate 10X more leads than those with five or fewer landing pages, and those with 200 or more total blog posts generate 3.5X more leads than those whose blogs have 20 or fewer posts. (Econsultancy)

72. 84% of b2b companies are using some form of social media marketing. However, “best in class” companies generate over 3X their share of all leads (17% vs. 5%) from social media as do average performing companies. (MarketingProfs)

73. 90% of b2b marketers are doing some form of content marketing, and b2b marketers spend on average 26% of their marketing budgets on content. The most effective content marketers spend twice as much as their less effective peers on content development, and consider buying stage when developing content. (B2B Marketing Insider)

74. It shouldn’t be a surprise, but content has to be good in order to be effective. B2b buyers say that less than half of vendor content is useful–and vendors who produce such low-value content are 27% less likely to be considered and 40% less likely to win the business. “Good” content is concise, entertaining (includes stories), more educational than promotional, and is contextually personalized. (B2B Marketing Insider)

75. 59% of marketers plan to increase their frequency of content publishing this year. (ClickZ)

76. Why content marketing matters: 44% of traditional outbound direct mail is never opened, which is a waste of budget, paper and postage. 86% of people now skip through television commercials with a DVR. And 84% of 25 to 34 year olds have exited a favorite website because of an irrelevant or intrusive ad. (Business2Community)

Media and Online Advertising

77. Most “national” newspapers are still quite regional: the Chicago Tribune gets socially shared at above average levels only in Illinois, the Washington Post only in Virginia, D.C. and Maryland, and the New York Times only in a clump of northeastern states and Hawaii (though the Wall Street Journal is very popular in Arizona). Fox News is most popular in the southeastern U.S. plus Nevada and Alaska, while the Huffington Compost is widely share along the Interstate 35 corridor (Minnesota to Texas), Florida, Oregon, Maine and the rustbelt. (Forbes)

78. Online CPM rates have little correlation with actual advertiser value delivered. Nearly one-third of all display ads are never seen (defined as 50% of the pixels in view for at least one second). But contrary to popular belief, “below the fold” ads don’t necessarily have lower impression rates than those placed high on the page. (MediaPost)

79. Leaderboard (728 x 90 pixels) and medium rectangle (300 x 250) ad sizes have the highest view-in rates. Coupon and directory sites have the highest ad view rates, both over 80%. In contrast, a sponsor’s ads had just a 27% likelihood of being seen on pet-oriented sites. (MediaPost)

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6 Reasons a Blog Should be the Center of Any Social Content Strategy

Monday, June 4th, 2012

Despite the many business benefits of blogging, it remains an underutilized tactic. Recent research shows that only 37% of the Inc. 500 fastest-growing companies and just 35% of the Fortune 100 enterprises maintain blogs. While blog adoption is actually slightly higher among small to midsized businesses (SMBs), roughly half are still not taking advantage of this medium.

Here are six compelling reasons for organizations of all sizes to make blogging the center of their social media and content marketing efforts.

Blog as Center of Social Media EffortsSearch engine optimization (SEO). Blogs are naturally great for search because they enable a company to rank for a much higher number of keywords, they can organically attract diverse high-quality links, and blog posts are far more likely to be shared in social media than standard website content. And presuming that blog is hosted on your company domain (e.g. blog.company.com or company.com/blog), the benefit of all of that link and social signal authority also accrues to your corporate website.

Fresh content. A blog is one of the best ways to continually produce fresh content for your website. Search engines love fresh content, and a steady stream of new information is what keeps visitors coming back to your site.

Flexibility. Every other type of social venue imposes limits on the length, format or type of content you can post. Twitter gives you only 140 characters, LinkedIn limits you to a corporate profile and product descriptions, Facebook limits you to whatever Mark Zuckerberg decided this morning. But blog posts can be short or long, visual or text-heavy, and incorporate virtually any type of media. You can post a video on YouTube, pin an infographic on Pinterest, upload a presentation to SlideShare, and embed any of these in a blog post.

Ownership. On social networking sites, you give up significant control over your information. There’s no easy way to find or search old tweets. Facebook changes its layout with annoying frequency. Smaller social networks have been know to disappear entirely, taking your content with them into the ether. With a blog, you own the content, control the platform, and decide on the format.

Leads. According to research from HubSpot, “Businesses with websites that have 401-1000 web pages get six times more leads than those with 51-100 pages. By creating more offers and blog articles, you create more opportunities to rank in search engines.” Unless your company or product line is very large, blogging is the most practical and valuable way to expand your website content.

Content that makes all other tactics more effective. Integrating a blog makes a static corporate LinkedIn profile into a dynamic company information page. A blog provides content for Facebook postings. And blogging makes Twitter use much more successful. Another HubSpot study found that “”companies that blog have 79% more Twitter followers than those that don’t…The relationship between blogging and Twitter followers is particularly strong for small businesses…small businesses that blog on average have 102% more Twitter followers than those who don’t.”

Given all of the benefits, why have so many firms still not embraced blogging? Many will cite the ongoing cost and effort required. But using figures from Mack Collier on the cost of blogging, a typical setup cost is $3,000 or less, and common ongoing cost is $3,000 or less per month for 1-2 blog posts per week. Those costs assume using an external writing resource, but the internal cost equivalents of using your own staff are likely close.

That works out to an ongoing cost of $36,000 per year for an appreciating asset (blog traffic builds over time as more content is added and authority is built). Considering the average cost to exhibit at a single trade show is around $25,000, blogging seems like a no-brainer bargain.

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