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Harnessing the Power of Social Applications by Josh Bernoff and Charlene Li

Reading Time: 2 minutes

Before I delve in to Harnessing the Power of Social Applications I need to get something out of the way. Normally I don’t highlight articles in the same way I will review a book, they would normally appear in links of the day, but I really liked Bernoff and Li’s article in the latest edition of MIT Sloan Management Review. I know that it is designed to help build up a head of steam before their book launch ‘Groundswell’ however it is a great article to put in front of the noses of business people about the value of social media and taking online marketing beyond search engine marketing (SEM).

Their simple guide on how different business functions can be impacted and how success can be measured is something that social media types should have as a laminated card on their cubicle wall.

Groundswell diagram by Li and Bernoff

Click here to read the article.

Some of the data points that Li and Bernoff used in the article additional items of interest that weren’t covered by article. Whilst in the UK we think that social networks like Facebook are having real take up and impact that is nothing compared to the level of online engagement by Japanese and Korean web users. Much of this engagement is likely to driven using mobile devices. Overall PC penetration was lower than the US, mobile device adoption was higher in Asia. The handsets were more sophisticated in terms of networks and access to online services.

Social media participation internationally

It is also interesting to see how low the level of adoption of social media is in Germany.  The bulk of activity being focused on consumption and anonymous participation in traditional forums. This is down to the experience of privacy invasion that happened during the Nazi era and in East Germany with the Stasi’s network of informants.

All the images are owned by Forrester Research. More on marketing here.