Social media in a global economy (for distribution)


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I presented this deck at a Social Media Leadership Forum event in London in February 2012 to put some context around what The Economist is doing in the social media space.

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Social media in a global economy (for distribution)

  1. 1. Social  media  in  a  global  economyFebruary  2012Nick  Blunden  |  Global  Managing  Director  &  Publisher  |  Economist.comE:  |  M:  +44  7968  838933  |  T:  @nickblunden
  2. 2. It  is  a  parOcularly  appropriate  Ome  for  us  to  be  talking  about  the  role  of  social  media “There  are  reasons  to  bet  Facebook  will   jus5fy  the  hype,  for  it  has  found  a  way  to   harness  a  prehistoric  ins5nct.  People  love  to   socialise,  and  Facebook  makes  it  easier.”   The  Economist  (Feb  2012)Source:  The  Economist
  3. 3. Clearly  The  Economist  is  not  the  only  major  internaOonal  organisaOon  interested  in  this  space “400  billion  tweets  and  not  one  useful  bit  of   data  was  ever  transmiCed.”   Onion  News  NetworkLink:  h3p://
  4. 4. But  let’s  start  with  some  history:  The  Economist  was  first  published  in  September  1843 To  take  part  in  a  "severe  contest  between   intelligence,  which  presses  forward,  and  an   unworthy,  5mid  ignorance  obstruc5ng  our   progress"  Source:  The  Economist
  5. 5. It  has  taken  us  169  years  for  our  global  circulaOon  to  top  1.5m Global  Print  CirculaOon:  1,487,010 Global  Digital  CirculaOon:  100,000 Combined  Total  CirculaOon:  1,587,010Data  source:  ABC  UK/US  July-­‐December  2011
  6. 6. But  less  than  5  years  to  reach  more  than  1.5m  Twi[er  followers @TheEconomist  established   May  12th  2007Source:  The  Economist
  7. 7. As  a  ‘tradiOonal’  media  business  this  could  be  seen  as  something  of  a  surprise “Among  the  audience  the  ‘here’s  the  way  it  is’   tone  appears  to  be  the  an5thesis  of  the  idea  of   par5cipa5on”.   The  Economist  New  Media  special  report  2006Source:  The  Economist
  8. 8. However  The  Economist  has  always  been  a  parOcularly  social  brand “Carrying  The  Economist  is  sort  of  like   wearing  a  shirt  that  says  ‘I’m  smart  and   worldly  and  interested  in  knowing  things   about  Ghana.”   Ezra  Klein,  Washington  PostPicture  credit:  h3p://
  9. 9. We  are  leveraging  this  inherent  socialability  to  build  a  social  ecosystem  not  just  a  news  site The  world’s  most  valuable  community  for   intelligent  analysis,  discussion  and  debateSource:  The  Economist
  10. 10. We  are  doing  this  because  we  believe  that  social  media  is  transformaOonal  not  just  a  fad “A  revolu5on  doesn’t  happen  when  society   adopts  new  tools,  it  happens  when  society   adopts  new  behaviours”   Clay  Shirky,  Here  Comes  EverybodyPicture  credit:  h3p://­‐media-­‐why-­‐its-­‐useless-­‐for-­‐democraYc-­‐poliYcs-­‐usipblogs-­‐arabspring/
  11. 11. Indeed  social  media  is  clearly  already  transforming  the  news  and  current  affairs  business Top  Twi[er  hashtags  of  2011 1.  #egypt  2.  #Ogerblood  3.   #threewordstoliveby  4.   #idontunderstandwhy  5.  #japan  6.   improudtosay  7.  #superbowl  8.  #jan25Picture  credit:  h3p://­‐weekly-­‐news-­‐review-­‐2011
  12. 12. It  is  also  beginning  to  radically  change  the  markeOng  landscape  for  our  adverOsers “We’re  going  through  a  revolu5on  a  whole   lot  like  the  Industrial  Revolu5on.  The  change   is  that  profound.” John  Hayes,  CMO,  American  ExpressSource:  h3ps://
  13. 13. And  although  disrupOve  for  us  social  media  is  unlocking  the  extraordinary  potenOal  of  ideas “Thinking  really  is  connec5ng.  It’s  connec5ng   ideas  together  into  a  network.  So  that’s  why  it’s   so  fun  that  we  live  in  the  age  of  networks.” Richard  Ogle,  Smart  WorldVideo:  available  from  The  Economist  on  request
  14. 14. As  a  result  we  have  changed  the  way  we  think  about  the  content  creaOon  process “The  blog  is  strong  on  reasoned  argument,  links  to   evidence  and  avoids  the  nasty  and  fruitless  polemics   that  bog  down  so  many  other  parts  of  the  Web.  Most   posts  have  a  sharp  and  thoughQul  point  about  a  public-­‐ policy  issue...  And  if  that  werent  enough,  the  comments   sec5on  aCracts  educated,  intelligent  remarks.”   Tyler  Cowen,  ’25  Best  Financial  Blogs’Picture  credit:
  15. 15. And  we  have  started  to  break  down  the  barriers  between  our  journalists  and  our  audience “The  role  of  journalists  in  this  new  world  is  to   add  value  to  the  conversa5on  by  providing   repor5ng,  context,  analysis,  verifica5on  and   debunking,  and  by  making  available  tools  and   plaQorms  that  allow  people  to  par5cipate” Jeff  Jarvis,  What  Would  Google  Do?Picture  credit:
  16. 16. This  enables  us  to  harness  extraordinarily  levels  of  social  engagement  and  parOcipaOon "I  enjoy  your  comments  sec5on  because  of  how  well   moderated  it  is.    It  is  a  much  more  civil  place  than  most   news  sites,  it  comes  as  close  to  true  discussion  than  any   other  news  site  (I  generally  just  avoid  the  comments  most   places  -­‐  reading  them  or  making  them!)"  userPicture  credit:
  17. 17. There  is  no  such  thing  as  a  social  media  expert  but  we’ve  learnt  some  lessons  along  the  way “A  journey  of  a  thousand  miles  begins   with  one  small  step” Chinese  proverbPicture  credit:  h3p://
  18. 18. Social  media  is  a  truely  global  phenomenon  not  just  a  western  one designed by Russia The Netherlands 26.06m 6.30m 56% 45% 62% 42% 46% Canada 18% 11.72m UK Poland Japan 54% 12.03m 19.27m 13.66m 43% 48% 44% 16% 26% 46% 40% 16% 28% 26% 8% Germany China 155.29m 18.81m 47% USA 47% 114.55m 53% 38% 34% South Korea 51% 32% 10.93m 51% 23% 20% Italy 33% France 12.66m 15.92m 38% 11% 57% 49% Hong Kong 45% 36% 2.56m 28% 39% Philippines 56% 14.43m Mexico Spain 33% 10.10m India 60% 12.80m 35.08m 73% 47% 52% 50% 46% 45% 63% 64% 37% 36% Malaysia 49% 11.50m Indonesia 18.93m Brazil 54% 57% 33.49m 63% 66% 54% 41% 52% 51% 34% Singapore 1.96m Australia 48% 7.05m 57% Global Map of Social Networking 2011 50% 32% 48% 27% About the Map Global Social Network Penetration This shows the universe size of active social networkers for each market and 80% then segments users into three behaviour types: Messagers, Groupers and Content Sharers. This behavioural data is based 70% on a number of detailed questions we conduct into the way that consumers use % Active Online Users 60% social networks. Because social networking is now so big and touches 50% every aspect of our internet experience, this detail is essential for the effective Behaviour Types: planning and implementation of 40% marketing activity across social active social networkers (millions) The most detailed study on the consumer adoption of the networks. This data reveals that users 30% internet ever compiled: across the world are very different in how messagers and mailers they utilise their network, with more focus PC /// Mobile /// Tablets /// TV sets /// Gaming on messaging and less on content 20% 100K+ surveys a year /// 3 waves a year /// 36 markets sharing in established markets like the content sharers US and UK but more focus on content and groups in fast growing markets like 10% Find out more /// joiners and creators of groups mail /// Indonesia and China. 0% do s M sia ia ng a ut any a Po e n th UK M d ng co ds Fr n G nce ng ve A Ca e da Au ina lia ly Ru il ia az ne or Si ndi re pa ai lan g l A US Ita ss ys ra lan Ho exi Ko na ne ra Sp Ch Ko ap Br pi So rm a Ja ala st I ilip er e h In Ph Ne ba lo Facebook  fans  top  10  countries  for  The   G Economist:  US,  India,  UK,  Canada,  Pakistan,   Italy,  Brazil,  Germany,  Turkey,  IndonesiaSource:  Global  Web  Index
  19. 19. But  Facebook  and  Twi[er  alone  do  not  consOtute  a  global  social  strategy Fastest  growing  social  networks 1.  Sina  Weibo,  2.  Pinterest,  3.  Google+,  4.   Tumblr,  5.  InstagramSource:  Sina  Weibo
  20. 20. Technology  clearly  has  a  criOcal  role  to  play  in  realising  the  global  social  media  opportunity “The  Economist  has  a  highly  ac5ve  and   engaged  audience  in  terms  of  both  clicks/ Tweet  and  Retweets/Tweet,  sugges5ng  a   high  level  of  alignment  between  content   posted  and  aCen5on  users  are  willing  to   provide.”  Social  FlowSource:  The  Matrix
  21. 21. But  social  engagement  is  as  much  an  art  as  a  science  so  human  involvement  is  essenOal “When  I  looked  at  tweets  from   @TheEconomist,  I  could  tell  immediately   that  they  were  handwriCen,  with  a  variety   of  approaches  –  some5mes  incorpora5ng  a   headline,  but  not  always  –  and  frequent  use   of  hashtags.”  Poynter.orgPicture  credit:  h3p://
  22. 22. There  are  no  hard  and  fast  global  social  rules  so  everything  should  be  tested  and  opOmised PosOng  frequency The  use  of  hashtags Headlines  v  body  copyPicture  credit:  h3p://
  23. 23. But  understanding  what  success  looks  like  from  a  social  perspecOve  is  sOll  fundamental Global  page  views  from  Facebook  up  148% Global  page  views  from  Twi[er  up  226%Picture  credit:  h3p://
  24. 24. A  good  place  to  start  is  to  forget  about  adverOsing  and  start  thinking  about  value  exchange “You  can’t  just  buy  aCen5on  anymore.   Having  a  huge  budget  doesn’t  mean  anything   in  social  media…The  old  paradigm  was  pay  to   play.  Now  you  get  back  what  you   authen5cally  put  in.  You’ve  got  to  be  willing   to  play  to  play.” Alex  Bogusky,  Founder  CPBSource:  Facebook
  25. 25. Because  in  the  world  of  social  media  complete  control  is  just  an  illusion “Conversa5ons  among  the  members  of  your   marketplace  happen  whether  you  like  it  or   not.  Good  marke5ng  encourages  the  right   sort  of  conversa5ons.”  Seth  Godin,  Permission  MarkeOngSource:  LinkedIn
  26. 26. Some  types  of  content  confer  instant  social  currency  so  are  naturally  more  social  than  others 37k  Facebook  likes,  2k  Tweets,  762  LinkedIn   shares,  732  recommends  Picture  credit:
  27. 27. And  not  all  social  planorms  perform  the  same  role Facebook  =  comment Twi[er  =  share Tumblr  =  like LinkedIn  =  discuss Reddit  =  linkSource:  h3p://
  28. 28. Despite  our  successes  we  sOll  have  plenty  more  lessons  to  learn “The  doorstep  to  the  temple  of  wisdom   is  a  knowledge  of  our  own  ignorance.”     Benjamin  FranklinSource:  Google+
  29. 29. But  we’ve  seen  enough  to  know  that  the  social  media  opportunity  is  too  good  to  wastePicture  credit:
  30. 30. Social  media  in  a  global  economyFebruary  2012Nick  Blunden  |  Global  Managing  Director  &  Publisher  |  Economist.comE:  |  M:  +44  7968  838933  |  T:  @nickblunden