The 2011 Social Media Matters Study: Everyone is an Early Adopter...Are You?
By Elisa Camahort on April 18, 2011
BlogHer Original Post
This week BlogHer released its fourth annual in-depth look at women in social media, the Social Media Matters Study, co-sponsored by Ketchum.
As always, we compared a sample of women from the general population (via partner Nielsen) to a sample from the BlogHer community. After four years of gathering, analyzing and presenting this data, here are just a few teasers to the most interesting findings:
1. Everyone is an early adopter
While certain media, including blogs and Facebook, continue to grow at a steady pace, we're also seeing more volatile and rapid growth and decline amongst newer applications, tools and services. The gap between the average woman online and the BlogHer community member has been compressed in many cases. Our theory: The introduction of increasingly sophisticated (but user-friendly) mobile devices has lowered barriers and enabled everyone to be an early adopter.
2. For the 40% of American online women who read blogs, blogs are their #1 passion
It goes without saying that the women in the BlogHer community favor blogs for almost every purpose, and participate in the blogosphere with incredible passion. But after four years of tracking the behaviors of the general population of American online women, we see that blogs continue to suck women in and not let them go. We turn to blogs for every purpose. we don't just read blogs, we love, trust and even need blogs.
3. Social Media has an overwhelmingly positive impact on the lives of those of us who use it actively
We asked you to share how you felt about social media's role in your lives, and you told us stories of how it brought information, support, opportunity, connection into your life. Turns out we don't buy into the nay-saying that the Internet is degrading our human relationships...it's actually helping us build more of them!
4, Finally: The economy is still the #1 concern for all of us. But blogging brings with it a sense of empowerment
Every survey is based on what people are willing to tell you. And what we learned is this study is that the BlogHer community reports less than half the unemployment of the general population and more than twice as many BlogHer community members report "managing their own business" vs. the general population. We can't know if any survey taker meets the government's definition of either "unemployed" or "business owner," but here's our theory: We feel a sense of pride of ownership about our blogging...whether we make our living with the blog or not.
There's a lot more, so I hope you'll click through, check out the presentation, and let us know which part resonates most with you. Stay tuned to our Research Center, too, because our director of Market Research, Jane Collins, who spearheaded the project, will be back next week digging into more details...including fun graphs and charts! Yes, I'm a little bit of a data wonk :)
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