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Social networking: Part 4: User activities ranked
Which network activities matter most? The verdict is...
In 2010, social network users engaged in virtually all of their favourite activities more frequently than they did in 2009 - and they ranked them as being more important to them than they were last year. In the most recent tracking wave of ZINC Research's social networking survey, The Bridge, "Staying in touch with friends" still tops the list as the most important activity (87% of all users, compared to 83% last year). But there was a notable jump in the use of network-based email and chat (from 69% last year to 77% in 2010). If this trend continues, it could point towards far greater use of social networks, along with declining market share for Gmail, Hotmail and other email providers, particularly in light of Facebook's recently-announced intention to launch an integrated messaging feature.

Social Networking Activities - Very Important/Somewhat Important
The following table lists 12 of the most common network-based activities, showing the percentage of each user segment that rated them as either very or somewhat important.

  TOTAL  HEAVY USERS  BUSINESS USERS   SOCIALIZERS  FRIENDS,
FAMILY CIRCLES 
CASUAL USERS 

 
2009 2010 2009 2010 2009 2010 2009 2010 2009 2010 2009 2010
Organizing social life
 38%  39%  74%  74%  47%  43%  54%  62%  56%  54%  4%  5%
Distraction/
relieving stress
 58%   61%   91%   76%   69%   67%   74%   79%   76%   77%   26%   34%
Email/chat

 69%   77%   84%   86%   64%   77%   84%   93%   81%  89%    50%   56%
Being part of
communiities
 35%    35%   71%  73%    44%   46%   47%  45%   51%   48%   7%   6%
Developing new
business
 26%   27%   56%   67%   51%   50%   23%   29%   36%   30%   8%   8%
Dating

 17%   11%   25%   34%   8%   8%   30%   21%   25%  10%    3%   2%
Staying in touch
with friends
 83%   87%   93%   96%   92%   90%   93%  98%    92%   97%   65%   73%
Making
new friends
 69%   41%   66%   72%   35%   31%   65%   62%   55%  55%    10%  23% 
Defining my identity
 29%   25%   67%   62%   27%  19%    44%   39%   38%   32%   4%  3% 
Sharing ideas/
blogging
 37%   38%   81%   79%   51%   45%   46%   50%   44%  49%    9%   9%
Playing online
games
 37%   49%   46%   49%   27%   31%   43%   54%   39%   57%   21%   31%


































Is The Bridge right for your organization? For information on this and other syndicated surveys conducted by ZINC Research, contact Brian Singh at: zincresearch.com/contact