July 8, 2009
Online PR Trendspotting.
Michael Jackson – an internet story
Following last night’s Michael Jackson memorial, stories continue to emerge about the King of Pop’s tangled financial situation, but those managing his estate will surely take some comfort in the astonishing surge in download sales of his back catalogue:
Prior to his death download sales were averaging fewer than 50,000 a week. This has since shot up to a remarkable 2.6m in the last week alone. Combined with the fact that the story was broken by a gossip website, news that Google itself buckled under the weight of the surge of Jackson searches on the day of his death, and the undoubted impact of Twitter as an emerging news service, all add up to put an interesting digital spin on the whole story.
The video below shows how the news of death spread across Twitter on the day he died, with the words representing trending topics on the site:
Popjustice blogger is ‘most influential’ in the world of music
The Hospital Club have just announced the results of their annual rundown of the most powerful movers and shakers in the creative and media industries, with Peter Robinson, creator of Popjustice.com, taking the title of ‘most influential – emerging’ in the Music category. We’ve known Peter for a while now, and are slightly surprised to hear him described ‘emerging’, as the site has been recognised as a powerful voice in the world of pop music for years.
Anyway, congratulations Peter! In honour of his receiving this recognition, here’s our favourite Popjustice interview ever:
Julian Perretta’s 3D webcam video
Widely tipped as one of 2009’s hottest new musical talents, Julian Perretta (signed to Columbia Records) this week played an intimate performance to lucky competition winners and industry insiders, and unveiled tracks from his upcoming debut album. We’re very excited indeed about the album, and look forward to working with Julian over the next few months, but the purpose of this story is to highlight the fantastic interactive 3D video available on his website – fans with webcams can insert their own faces into the video for the song:
10 Twitter Facts
Some interesting stats about Twitter, taken from research by a social media analytics provider named Sysomos:
1. 21% (One Fifth) of Twitter accounts are empty placeholders. These are the percentage of Twitter accounts that have never posted a single tweet. They may either be registered simply to hold a username for later use, or be experimental accounts started up but never used.
2. Nearly 94% of all Twitter accounts have fewer than 100 followers. In a finding perhaps consistent with the newness of the tool as well as the fact that many people may currently have an account simply to start experimenting with the tool, the vast majority of Twitter users have an extremely low followership.
3. March and April of 2009 were the tipping point for Twitter. During these months, Ashton Kutcher launched his quest to get to 1 million followers faster than CNN, Oprah started using Twitter, and the steady flow of new users to the site continued. For many, it offered a safer and easier way to get their feet wet with social media, 140 characters at a time.
4. 150 followers is the magic number. In a particularly interesting data point from the survey, Sysomos found that Twitter users tended to “follow back” all their followers up until about 150 connections. Then the reciprocation rate fell off dramatically, which seems to indicate that this number may be the crossover point where people shift from using Twitter for more personal use to using it more for “lifecasting” their thoughts and actions to a community of people who they feel varying levels of connection to.
5. A small minority creates most of the activity. A steep curve of a small minority of actively engaged content creators generating most of the activity on a site is common among social networks, but it is steeper and more pronounced on Twitter. 5% of users account for 75% of all activity, and 10% of users account for 86%. This seems to suggest that the site has managed to engage a mass audience beyond those who typically engage with social media.
6. Half of all Twitter users are not “active”. If you take a general description of being “active” on Twitter to mean that you have posted a tweet at some point in the last 7 days (1 week), then the survey learned that 50.4% of all Twitter users fit this category. If you remove the 21% from point #1, this leaves about 30% of users who have an account and have tweeted before, but happen to be inactive now.
7. Tuesday is the most active Twitter day. One of the most useful data points from the report is that it clears up the common question of which day of the week is the best day to tweet something. The research found that Tuesday stood out as the most popular day for tweets and retweets, followed by Wednesday and then Friday.
8. APIs have been the key to Twitter’s growth & utility. In terms of tools that people are using for Twitter, more than half (55%) of all Twitter users use something other than Twitter.com to tweet, search and connect with others. This may, in part, be due to Twitter’s notorious reputation of failing/crashing, but also is a credit to all the third party applications that have been built on top of Twitter and do their fair share to bring new users to the service.
9. English still dominates Twitter. Twitter is, extremely English-friendly. As the report found, the top four countries on Twitter are all English speaking (US, UK, Canada, Australia). Of these, US makes up 62% of all Twitter users, followed by UK with nearly 8% and Canada and Australia with 5.7% and 2.8% respectively. The largest non-English speaking country on Twitter? Brazil with 2%.
10. Twitter is being led by the social media geeks. This particular finding should likely come as no surprise, but 15% of Twitter users who follow more than 2000 people identify themselves as social media marketers. These individuals are more likely to post updates every day (sometimes more than once per day) and also use Twitter more actively for direct communication.