Social Networking Going Global

June 2, 2011

Social networking websites such as Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn have become a part of the American culture, and while it may seem like anyone in the world who has access to a computer is on one, if not all three of these sites, there is growing international competition.  In the U.S. and most European countries Facebook still reigns supreme.  However, if the majority of your organizations target audience is in China where the government has blocked all access to Facebook, don’t discard your social media plans.  Use Renren instead.  This is the most popular social networking site in China, and the developers have even modeled the layout of the site after Facebook.

In Japan, Mixi with over 30 million users has cornered the Japanesse social media market.  According to online research 80% of social media users in Japan are active on Mixi.  China and Japan are not alone in developing their own social networks, Tuenti, was named the “Facebook of Spain” and is targeted specifically for Spanish speaking users.  Below is a map created by Italian blogger Vincenzo Cosenza, to help illustrate the diverse social networking tastes color coded by country.

As the map shows Facebook is still an international favorite, but when planning your social media strategy it is important to understand where your target audience is active and focus your efforts there.  Also remember that social media is a fast paced world that is always changing and networks are continuously being launched so be sure to set your RSS feed to catch anything new.

For more information about other international social networks and Vincenzo Cosenza’s map check out:

Lauren Swartz – Communications Assistant

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