Social media growth driven from Asia, apparently

Social media and blogging is soaring with Asia a key growth market, according to research conducted by Universal McCann as reported by Brand Republic on May 11.

While I have some concerns about this story (see below), some of the reported stats are quite interesting:

  • According to the report, China and South Korea lead the way in actively creating content and socialising online
  • In China, 72.3 per cent of blog readers also post online
  • More than 170 million people globally now post blogs
  • Blogs are read regularly by some 340 million internet users worldwide
  • The largest audience is the US, where 64 million people read blogs
  • The number of people watching video clips online on sites such as YouTube has doubled from 31 per cent to 62 per cent in the last nine months
  • Internet users are increasingly connecting to others across the globe with an estimated 194 million, or 36 per cent of the 16-54-year-old research sample, joining a social network

All that’s missing from this data is some means of validating it so as to provide a bit of credibility. I found it impossible to locate the research source for the report to confirm some simple facts such as when the research was conducted – try searching any of the McCann websites and see how far you get.

According to the Brand Republic report, “Universal McCann conducted research across 21 global markets.” I have no ideas what that means. Which markets? How many people were surveyed and in which countries? What’s the survey methodology?

If Brand Republic’s source was a press release, I couldn’t find it. If the report itself, ditto.

So if anyone has any details about this survey, I’d love to know.

I hope this doesn’t turn out to be like the Jupiter farce last year.

And by the way, McCann, it’s “social media such as blogging,” not “social media and blogging.” If you don’t agree, then please share your definitions of ‘social media’ and ‘blogging.’

Neville Hobson

Social Strategist, Communicator, Writer, and Podcaster with a curiosity for tech and how people use it. Believer in an Internet for everyone. Early adopter (and leaver) and experimenter with social media. Occasional test pilot of shiny new objects. Avid tea drinker.

  1. Social media phenomenon in Asia? « PR Speak

    […] Social media phenomenon in Asia? Published May 14th, 2007 Uncategorized Neville Hobson highlighted a Universal MaCann study that is the latest in a series reporting pretty phenomenal growth in the use of social media across Asia.  One earlier pan Asian study was by Windows Live Spaces .  Some salient numbers: […]

  2. Jonathan Marks

    These look like some of the fantasy figures you see for events like Live Aid, Eurovision Song Contest. In practice, divide by 5 to get a better handle on who is really active. I have the same problem with second life figures. If making a blog is free and inactive blogs are not cleaned up, then I take the claims with a pinch of salt. But why are we still impressed by numbers? No-one knows the number of webpages being added to the web each day. And 1.6 million mobile phones sold a day tends to dampen numbers like this a bit.

  3. neville

    Looks like the McCann survey does have some substance, Jonathan. I got a call from McCann yesterday and they’ve emailed me a full copy of the report.

    An update here as soon as I get a minute to study the report.

  4. Jonathan Marks

    Still suspicious. People start releasing figures about videos being watched when the technology is not (yet) in place to measure if the stream is watched all the way through. Or was it downloaded by RSS to remain unwatched on a video iPOD. Be interested to hear what you were able to read once you get a moment.

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