Startups like SocialCam and Viddy, two of the fastest growing social networks for sharing video on smartphones, may be on a collision course with Google-owned YouTube. While initial indicators are far from conclusive, rumblings of a possible market tsunami are afoot.
From January to March, people spent 10% less time watching YouTube videos online, while users of mobile video apps increased their viewing time by 52%, according to San Francisco-based Flurry, a mobile advertising and analytics platform provider. In March, each active user averaged 425 minutes on YouTube and 231 minutes on mobile video apps.
While the numbers are interesting, Peter Farago, vice president of marketing at Flurry, acknowledges they do not prove that mobile apps are taking viewer time from YouTube. That kind of proof would have to come from a statistical study.
Nevertheless, Farago believes the numbers are a canary in the coal mine. With increasing processing power, higher bandwidth and high-definition cameras, smartphones are becoming a good platform for capturing memorable moments and then sharing them with friends and family. So, it is certainly possible that people are spending less time watching online video, and more time creating and sharing it. “When you put all that together with a Viddy or SocialCam, which are very cool, fun, editing, sharing tools, you start to get the perfect storm, or the planets align,” he said. (more…)
The title of this post may seem like a bold statement or an exaggeration. After all, TV has a penetration rate of over 90% in Brazil and commands most of the country’s ad spend. Magazines and newspapers are also flourishing in Brazil, setting new records for circulation, subscriptions and revenue. While Brazil now has 85 million Internet users, penetration is only at 44% since the population is estimated to be 192 million.
So how can the Internet be #1 in Brazil? A new survey of more than 2,000 Brazilians—done by comScore and presented at ProXXima Sao Paulo by IAB Brasil president Fabio Coelho—offers some reasons why we can draw this conclusion.
First of all, 42% of respondents say they spend 2 or more hours a day online—only 25% of them watch TV for this amount of time. When asked what they would do if they had an extra 15 free minutes during the day, 33% of them said they would surf the Internet. This was the #1 option, followed by going on social networks, at 13%. In contrast, only 11% of Brazilians said they would watch TV with those extra 15 minutes a day. As such, 3 times more Brazilians preferred to use this extra time for going online than for watching TV.
In addition, this kind of response wasn’t just limited to younger people. Among respondents who were 55 or older, 34% preferred to surf the Internet with those extra 15 minutes and just 15% said they would use that time to watch TV.
Coelho also said that the research shows that the Internet is the medium people use the most in a typical day, whether at work or in school. The data clearly supports this. In the morning, 14% of respondents said they read the newspaper, whereas 69% went online at that time of the day. In the evening, 78% of the respondents said they went online while only 46% watched TV.
Another of the study’s interesting findings had to do with receptiveness to Internet ads. In general, respondents said that they considered online ads to be creative and rich in content. TV seemed to outshine Internet in one aspect: 44% of respondents said that TV ads were memorable, more than the 36% who said that Internet ads were memorable. However, almost half of the respondents (49%) said that Internet ads are more creative and innovative than those on TV.
Makes sense: just as radio became one of the big purveyors of news because it was the medium that traveled with you, so should mobile.
But it is also a depressing development, portending, once again, the end of the world as we know it: the news business has been plunged into a crisis because web advertising dollars are a fraction of old media money. And mobile is now a fraction of web: the approximate conversion rate is $100 offline = $10 on the web = $1 in mobile.
In part, the reasons are purely mechanical: you can cram three or four ads on a web page, meaning an average web CPM (cost per thousand views) of $1.00 (if you’re lucky) can become a rate-per-page per thousand (RPM) of $4.00 (versus $20-$40 CPMs in traditional media). Mobile CPMs are running at something closer to $0.25 – and we’re only able to fit one ad on those miniature pages. (more…)
Mashable U.S. & World
March 27, 2012
by Sonia Paul
Ghana’s general elections are coming up this December, and to help streamline the voter registration process, the country is now implementing its first-ever biometric voter registration — in other words, using fingerprint technology to help verify identity. Ghana is also using social media to publicize the process, correct misconceptions and increase overall attention about the upcoming elections.
The non-partisan project Ghana Decides, launched on March 24, “aims to foster a better informed electorate for free, fair and safe 2012 Elections using online social media tools.” It’s an initiative under GhanaBlogging, which itself is a membership-based platform to connect bloggers both in and outside of Ghana who write about the country.
Getting potential voters to participate in the high-tech fingerprint scanning technology is a huge initiative for Ghana, and it’s costing the country $45 million. Other countries in Africa, including Nigeria, Kenya and the Democratic Republic of Congo, have already implemented similar voting procedures. These countries share Ghana’s frustration with disputes about election results, which come largely due to problems such as people voting more than once.
Using fingerprint technology to verify identity would help ensure that those who can vote are voting, and that they do so only once. But issues still remain. Many people are concerned, for instance, that the high-tech tools might cause cancer, a fear which Ghana’s Electoral Commission (EC) has been quick to disclaim.
Those fears are in part what prompted EC to broaden the scope of the voter registration education campaign. As Mr. Daniel Amertey Shah, one of Ghana’s Municipal Chief Executives, said in an interview with Ghana’s Daily Graphic, “They thought it necessary to summon the assembly with the motive of ensuring that necessary information on the biometric voters registration is disseminated for the electorate to be also educated.”
That’s where Ghana Decides and its outreach efforts on social media come in. The project’s organizers are using Tumblr (which serves as the project’s home base), Facebook, Twitter, YouTube and Flickr to put the spotlight on the voter registration process, which started on March 24 — the same day Ghana Decides officially launched — and ends May 5.
On Twitter, Ghana Decides is promoting the hashtags #iRegistered and #GhanaDecides to aggregate media about registering and speak out about the entire initiative. The #iRegistered campaign, in particular, is aimed at encouraging more people to register by sharing the experiences of those who have already been through the process:
The Ghana Decides Flickr account has more pictures of freshly registered voters with their brand-new voter I.D. cards, and its Facebook account combines pictures with articles and other media. Meanwhile, the organizers are using YouTube to feature interviews with voters as they register, and show what exactly the entire process is like.
The project does have some potential caveats, however, and Ghana Decides acknowledges them. The low level of internet penetration in the country raises concerns over just how much the online campaigns will affect voter registration turnout. But Kinna Likimani, the Project Lead of Ghana Decides, said in an official press release that projects would first be conducted offline, then promoted online to ensure that as many people are reached as possible.
However, part of the point of the online campaigns is to educate Ghanaian citizens about “the effective use of social media for social change.” An estimated 1.2 million Ghanaians are on Facebook, out of a population of about 24.4 million, according to public data from the World Bank. At just about five percent of the country, this is a tiny fraction, but the majority of those who are on Facebook are between the ages of 18 and 35. According to Likimani, it’s time for political parties, independent governance institutions and civil society organizations to actively engage with these online users.
Mashable reached out to Ghana Decides to get more specific feedback on the project, but organizers have not yet gotten back to us at the time of publishing.
Do you think Ghana Decides will help increase voter registration in the country? And do you think social media helps lay the groundwork for social change? Let us know your thoughts in the comments.
It’s become something of a mantra in the cinema and theater alike: Please turn off your cellphones before the performance begins. Depending on where you are, some of these warnings are a bit more lighthearted while others are a little more matter-of-fact, but either way it’s practically inevitable that whatever movie, musical, or play you are seeing, you’ll be asked to turn off your cellphone beforehand. Practically. A fad that bucks this trend is becoming more widely adopted. Commonly referred to as “tweet seats,” a phenomenon encouraging the use of cellphones during a performance is spreading, to mixed reviews.
The concept is simple. Much like restaurants with their increasingly rare smoking sections, some theaters are setting aside a section of seats where users can use their cellphones, ostensibly for tweeting, during a performance without disturbing less “connected patrons.” The idea has been around for a while. In 2009, the Lyric Opera in Kansas set aside 100 tweet seats during the final performance of Gilbert and Sullivan’s HMS Pinafore, and recently, tweet seats made the move to Broadway after being incorporated in the revival of the musical Godspell. The hope, it seems, is to try and get the younger generation more interested in the ancient art form that is live theater by allowing them to bring their vices with them. As a bonus, the performance the tweeters are watching is almost certain to get some free publicity. (more…)
Asian Americans were the fastest growing race group in the U.S. in the 2010 census, but their demographic influence is still mostly in the western part of the country, with a few exceptions.
According to the U.S. Census Bureau, about 5 percent of the country’s population now identifies itself as Asian, an increase of more than 45 percent between 2000 and 2010. The growth rate itself was strong across the country—the Asian population grew by at least 30 percent in every state except Hawaii. And Hawaii’s lower growth rate was most likely because of the already high Asian population there (currently 57 percent of the state’s population).
This fast growth rate is changing the look of a number of states in the West. In California, for example, Asians now account for 15 percent of the overall population. In Nevada and Washington state, they are 9 percent of the population. The two other states with high Asian populations were New Jersey (9 percent) and New York (8 percent). The top five states that experienced the most Asian growth were Nevada (116 percent), Arizona (95 percent), North Carolina (85 percent), North Dakota (85 percent) and Georgia (83 percent).
Interestingly, much of this shift has to do with where specific Asian groups are now settling. Among detailed Asian groups with a population of 1 million or more, Japanese (71 percent) and Filipinos (66 percent) had the largest proportions living in the West. Large proportions of Chinese (49 percent), Vietnamese (49 percent) and Koreans (44 percent) lived in the West as well. A much lower proportion of Asian Indians (25 percent) lived in the West.
The Asian Indian population was the largest in 23 states, of which 13 were in the South, six in the Midwest and four in the Northeast. For every state in the West, either the Filipino population or the Chinese population was the largest detailed Asian group. The Filipino population was the largest detailed Asian group in 11 states, the Chinese population was the largest in nine states and the District of Columbia, the Vietnamese population was the largest in five states, and the Hmong population was the largest in two states.
Among the 20 metropolitan statistical areas with the largest Asian, Chinese was the largest detailed Asian group in six of the 20 metro areas (New York, Los Angeles, San Francisco, San Jose, Boston and Seattle). The Asian Indian population was also the largest detailed Asian group in six of the 20 metro areas (Chicago, Washington, Dallas-Fort Worth, Philadelphia, Atlanta and Detroit). Filipinos were the largest in five of the 20 metro areas (San Diego, Riverside, Las Vegas, Sacramento and Phoenix), followed by Japanese, Hmong and Vietnamese in one metro area each (Honolulu, Minneapolis-St. Paul and Houston, respectively).
Grabbing a cup of coffee at my usual café recently, I had planned to steal a few minutes from my overscheduled day to troll some favorite websites. Instead, I got wrapped up in a conversation between a grandmother and her grandkids talking at the table behind me.
“Grandma, did you get my text about the Dead Space game I want for my birthday?”
“Yep, I did. But you won’t know until you open your present!”
They had my attention at “Grandma” and “text.” She knew about Dead Space too?
A quick glance over my shoulder revealed a petit, average older woman sharing a table with two teenaged companions.
I turned back to my smartphone and attempted to mind my own business. My attention was instantly diverted. “Grandma,” said one of the teens, “Did you know Mom surprised Dad and is taking him away for a few days for his 50th birthday?”
Grandma’s answer: “Of course, honey. Your Mom texted me her info so she knew I was available to stay with you.”
I smiled. The conversation sounded surreal to me. I’ve spent most of the last decade trying to understand consumer behavior with mobile devices, and still I questioned why this conversation was striking me as odd enough that I needed to fire off some texts of my own about it: “Dude, just heard convo about Grandma texting her grandkids!”
Mobile as a marketing technology is not even 10 years old. In 2006, the coolest phone on Earth was the Motorola Razr. It had a color screen and you could kind of go online with it, even if it was only to a carrier portal. In a mere five years, as the family behind me illustrated, we have gone from the Motorola Razr and really no ecosystem around it to having 50 percent of the population using smartphones. That’s not just 50 percent of millennials or 50 percent of Gen Xers. It’s 50 percent of everybody carrying in their pockets a computer that’s location-aware and runs software apps and is commerce-enabled.
The adoption of mobile by early adopters has forced traditionally late adopters, such as members of the 65-plus demographic, into participation. Exhibit A: Texting Grandma.
We’ve seen incredible growth in text messaging over the last four years because older generations had to pick up the technology in order to communicate with the early-adopting younger ones. Text messaging has essentially become ubiquitous. In fact, more than 200 trillion text messages are received in America each day.
As May marks the country’s celebration of Older American Month, hats off to the booming demographic (40.3 million 65+ in 2010 and projected to be 88.5 million in 2050, per U.S. Census stats) that is now a driver of tech-fueled conversations.
It also begs the question to brand marketers: If your Grandma is texting, why aren’t you?
In the world of media and entertainment, we are finally starting to see a positive shift in the portrayal of Hispanics. Cultural stereotypes are giving way to cultural authenticity. The attention usually given to Spanish-speaking Hispanics is turning to the English-speaking majority born in the United States. New Generation Latinos (NGLs) are making waves and changing the conversation. Not only are NGLs influencing traditional media, they are making Hispanics the biggest and fastest growing users of online and interactive technology, mobile devices, and social media.
This fact alone – their growing numbers online – makes them an important, if not the most important audience and consumer group. But also consider:
Hispanics account for more than half of U.S. population growth over the past ten years. In one state, Illinois, 90% of the growth was Hispanic.
The number of U.S.-born Hispanics has reached more than a million a year, for the first time surpassing immigration as the leading cause of growth.
Many Hispanic groups have doubled their population in the U.S. in the last ten years.
“The Walt Disney Company may join Univision, the dominant Spanish-language broadcaster in the United States, in starting an English-language cable news channel this year.” ~ From NY Times Media Decoder, February 6, 2012.
The Media & Entertainment industry has served the Hispanic community, when it’s served them at all, through Spanish language news and programming. But for the most part, the industry has overlooked bilingual/bicultural Hispanics born in the U.S. Now that this group of NGLs makes up the majority of Hispanics living in the country, they can no longer be ignored. (more…)
Hispanics likely will overtake whites as the largest ethnic group in California next year, a Register analysis of U.S. Census Bureau data shows.
The change is coming earlier than the state’s top demographer expected, the result of decades of rapid population growth among Hispanics and decline among non-Hispanic whites or “Anglos.”
Census data released Wednesday shows that California had 37.69 million residents last July 1, 353,000 more than a year earlier. Hispanics and Asians accounted for virtually all of the growth. The white population fell by 37,000.
At that rate Hispanics will eclipse whites, who have dominated California since statehood, sometime in 2013. Since 1990, the white population has declined by 2.1 million while the Hispanic population has grown by 6.3 million.
Bill Schooling, chief of demographic research at the state Department of Finance, had expected the tipping point to come later than 2013. But he agreed the Register’s calculations appeared correct.
“We’ll see some interesting changes to come,” Schooling said. In contrast with the 1950s, when most Californians came from other U.S. states, he said, today most Californians either are natives of the Golden State or are foreign-born.
According to the 2010 American Community Survey, 62 percent of California Hispanics are native-born Americans and another 12 percent are naturalized citizens. The remaining 26 percent, 3.7 million people in all, are not citizens.