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Grow Your Business Social Media

Wake-Up Call for Marketers: Social Media Has Reached Saturation Point

If your business has jumped on the social media bandwagon to reach customers, you’re going to have to up the ante to keep them engaged, a new report suggests. That’s because social media use has reached a saturation point. Your mere presence in the digital realm will no longer cut it.

Social networking now reaches the most Internet users in the U.S. and has become an integral part of their lives, according to eMarketer’s new report on social media usage and demographic and behavioral trends.

An estimated 150 million Web users in this country will use social networking at least monthly this year, eMarketer estimates. But as social networking reaches a saturation point, the days of double-digit growth in users are over. The reach of these sites today is 63.7 percent of the online population; by 2013, that figure will have inched upward by only a little more than 3 percentage points.

“With fewer new users signing up, social network users will be more sophisticated and discerning about the people and brands they want to engage with,” said Debra Aho Williamson, eMarketer principal analyst and author of the report.

“In 2011, social networks will need to cement their relationships with their users, particularly people ages 35 and older, in order to keep them engaged,” she said. “Marketers and media companies can contribute to this effort by creating compelling user experiences that make people want to stay connected to social networks so they can gain access to experiences, deals or content they may not be able to find anywhere else.”

Reach BusinessNewsDaily senior writer Ned Smith at nsmith@techmedianetwork.com. Follow him on Twitter @nedbsmith.

Ned Smith
Ned Smith

Ned was senior writer at Sweeney Vesty, an international consulting firm, and was Vice President of communications for iQuest Analytics. Before that, he has been a web editor and managed the Internet and intranet sites for Citizens Communications. He began his journalism career as a police reporter with the Roanoke (Va.) Times, and was managing editor of American Way magazine and senior editor of Us. He was a Captain in the U.S. Air Force and has a masters in journalism from the University of Arizona.