- Forrester Councils
- Councils Overview
- log in
Posted by Augie Ray on December 12, 2010
One common complaint I hear from marketers is that social media is not (yet) a mass medium. For example, the circulation for Cosmopolitan is 3 million, while the magazine counts just 700,000 fans in Facebook. And while it seems (almost) everyone is creating, using or consuming social media today, it is a highly fractured channel. Thirty years ago, almost every person watching television was tuned into one of three networks; today, 550 million people use Facebook, and each and every one of them is their own network.
However, the fact that social media is fractured and personalized does not mean that it isn't a mass medium; it just means it is a challenging mass medium. Here is the evidence for social as a mass medium:
I find the debate over whether or not social media is a mass medium rather silly. Consumers have already decided this with their habits and actions; it's up to marketers to shift their budgets and plans accordingly. It is tough to achieve scale in such a fractured medium, but it's hardly impossible. Hawaii Five-O, the most popular new show of this television season, averages approximately 11 million viewers live plus same day while Coca-Cola’s fan page on Facebook counts almost twice as many fans. In 2011, we'll see more brands like Coke and Old Spice reach and influence the masses via social media.