Monday, August 17, 2009

Women Use Social Media to Network Professionally

The results of a research study (sponsored by the social network ShesConnected) were posted in a recent eMarketer bulletin. Participants were recruited through various social networks, who were encouraged to pass it along to their friends. The survey results provided much-needed data about the habits and preferences of female social networkers.

59% of respondents log onto social networks multiple times a day, and an additional 14% log on daily. Facebook was the most frequently used social network, with 83% of respondents reporting they use it. Surprisingly, LinkedIn (73%) was nearly twice as popular as MySpace (41%) and 55% use Twitter. Another notable result was that professional networking was the most compelling reason these women visited social networks, overtaking staying in touch with friends. (71% vs 62%, found it "very important", respectively.) Researching products and services (45% "very important" and 34% "somewhat important") and finding deals and discounts (25% "very important" and 39% "somewhat important") were also high on the list.

The report also gathered data on privacy issues and revenue generation preferences. 93% of respondents rated privacy settings as “very important,” and another 6% said they were “somewhat important.” When asked about using sites that sell data to advertisers, 41% were "not comfortable" and 36% claimed they would not use the site. Interestingly, however, charging a subscription fee proved to be a greater barrier to entry- a full 49% of respondents claimed they would not use the site.

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