Lately, society have been quick to shout that Google Plus has mostly inactive users, and I’m here to say, “yeah, so?”. One of these shocking pronouncements came about in August 2011, when Bimeanalytics put out an infographic that swept the tech news and had everyone shouting that 83% of Google Plus users are inactive, or on the flip side, only 17% are active. Bimeanalytics later withdrew that stat from their infographic, mentioning that it might not be accurate suitable. Still, it wouldn’t surprise me to think it is accurate. Or at least as accurate as these things ever are. But I still say, “Yeah, so?”
In any case, every moment someone releases stats about some social network, in regards to active users, there’s a great hubbub about it. I think everyone reading about these stats needs to do two things:
Take the numbers with a mountain of salt. Most of the stats presented will be guesstimations at best, and possibly so far wrong, that it’s simply a load of [place your favorite “load of x” word here].
Remember that a low instance of active users is the norm for any social group – online or offline – past or present. folks join things, and thereupon fail to participate. It happens. Raise your hand whether you know anyone who has joined a gym, only to stop going soon afterwards. whether you want some stats to visualize that real-world group activity, various reports by the years have declared that 40% of folks who join health clubs stop going soon afterwards, with 90% stopping within the first 90 days.
People Are Lazy
Pick any activity online or off that requires any effort at all, and you’ll probably find a statistic that claims a large percentage of participants are really inactive.
People tend to jump on things they think they might enjoy doing, and thereupon quickly fall back into their previous routine. Face it. humans are lazy and most society may be comfortable following or lurking but rarely lead or even participate in the smallest of ways – in anything.
So before you condemn Google Plus or any other social network that may be involved in the “Stat of The Day”, keep in mind that the same kinds of things have been shouted about every other social network – even those that are popular. Let’s take a quick look through the short history of Twitter, just to lay the foundation.
- In the summer of 2009, Hubspot reported (pdf) that about 55% of 4.5 million Twitter accounts had NEVER TWEETED, and nearly 53% had NO followers.
- In January of 2010, Marketing Pilgrim informed us that according to a study put out by RJMetrics, the percentage of active Twitter users was 17%. (There’s that 17% number again – just like the one recently thrown around about Google Plus).
- Just two months later, in March of 2010, Mashable reported that a study by Barracuda Labs showed that only 21% of Twitter users were active and 34% had never tweeted even once.
- That same month, Business Insider reported that of 175 million accounts in February 2011, 56 million Twitter users followed no one, and 90 million had 0 followers.
- Skip ahead to August of 2011, and an infographic reveals just 5% of Twitter users create 75% of the content but 52% of Twitter users update their status every day, so the active users have seemingly risen to more than 52% – possibly much more.
We could probably all find many of these same types of stats on nearly any popular or once-popular social group, but I think that is abundant to manufacture my point.
Stop jumping on every hyped-up stat that someone throws out about how many active users Social Network X has or Social Network Y doesn’t have. The shocking numbers are probably just more of the same load of [place your favorite “load of x” word here] that you’ve seen umpteen times before.
Yes, Social Network X has mostly inactive users. So does Social Network Y, Local Community Group Z, and School Groups 1, 2, and 3. All the noise about that news is not news. It’s just noise.
Stats That Matter
- What stats should you really be concerned with? Your own.
- Which social networks manufacture the most difference to you as an individual, and which makes the most difference to you as a solo or small business owner?
- Where are the conversations taking place about your niche or product?
- Monitor your stats. Set up search alerts to inform you of make or niche mentions so you know which social networks have the most active users that you specifically care about.
- Then realize that even the non-active users might still be influenced by your participation there, either directly or indirectly, so be active where it makes sense for you personally, and disregard all the rest of the noise.
When you’re done with that, go lurk somewhere. You know you want to!
Yes, I realize the title of that post is a tad bit misleading, but it was designed to be that way to invent a point. Oh hey, be certain to connect with me on Google Plus, Twitter, and Facebook. There’s a good chance I’m an active user at one, some, or all of them, at one instance or another. possibly even 17% or 83% of the instance.
© Donna for DazzlinDonna, 2011. |
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Post tags: Google Plus, social networks, stats, Twitter
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Original post by Donna