The Nature of Scholarly Social Media Usage

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Nature have done some interesting research on scholars use of social media networks including the network of choice for them – ResearchGate.

On the more well known and used networks they quizzed over 300 regular using scholars for each analysis whereas with ResearchGate this moved up to just short of 1,600.

They also interviewed a lesser number of users of  and Mendeley.

From our, very uneducated & superficial review it is clear that a majority of scholars/researchers don’t use Facebook professionally and that Linkedin has the closest profile to ResearchGate. Twitter almost as one might expect is used to follow comment and discover.

ResearchGate which was founded a couple of years ago boasts about 4.5 million subscribers and currently joiners are arriving at the rate of 10k a day. This for such a specialist network is impressive. For comparative purposes has around 11 million users and Mendeley around 3 million. Mendeley incidentally are London based and are part of Elsevier.

Much additional and insightful analysis on the Nature site.

The Apple Brand Tells the Best Story

Aesop in association with One Poll have just released their 2014 Brand storytelling survey results in which they “… asked 2,000 consumers to identify brands against 9 key storytelling elements.”

They asked which of these brands:

  1. Do you consider to have a unique character/personality?
  2. Have a clear opinion?
  3. Has vision or purpose?
  4. Are you intrigued to know what they’ll do next?
  5. Tell a credible story?
  6. Create their own world?
  7. Produce content you want to share or talk about?
  8. Are entertaining?
  9. Are memorable?

We’ve done our usual extraction of our wide Tech sector brands and list the total top twenty one!

The Top Tech Twenty one 2013 Media Spend
Tech Overall Overall
NE – New entry
Source: Aesop, Brand storytelling survey 2014

Interestingly, to us, is the media spend info (we guess the blanks indicate the unavailability of information rather than a nil spend!

Surprisingly, to us, no appearance for Sky or Amazon. We recall incidentally that Sky also had well over £100 million in advertising spend.

Finally outside the tech sector we were interested to see the inclusion of the, now 4, main political parties (all are new entries) with UKIP leading the way in position 11 followed by Labour (72) Conservative (89) and Lib Dem (93) brands. We noted that none of them figured in the top 10 of the 5th element above but UKIP came in at # 2 on the 2nd element!

Survey download

Featuring Facebook and Twitter for all

Not to mention Google talk.

U2opia Mobile provides this service via its Fonetwish product using Unstructured Supplementary Service Data (USSD) protocol to allow unsmart phones to connect to specific internet services such as Twitter and Facebook tailored for small screen and text-only functionality.

It’s available in seven languages Albanian. Arabic, English, French, Spanish, Malay, and Swahili.

As the majority of mobiles around the world are less than smart there certainly is a big market for this offering and they appear to be doing rather well.

Founded by two Indian entrepreneurs Sumesh Menon and Ankit Nautiyal in 2010 they already claim over 20 million users in 36 countries around the globe. As an example of the potential in India alone, out of the 900 million-plus mobile subscribers, 550 million can access Fonetwish services.

U2opia the company has its roots with Sumesh’s favourite rock band!

Sources: U2opia, QUARTZ India

A Third of Most Valuable Global Brands are Techs

BrandZ part of the WPP group  have just published their consistently excellent  Top 100 Most Valuable Global Brands 2014” which is  commissioned by them and conducted by Millward Brown Optimor.

All you need and more is available from the BrandZ 100 site!

Now on to the results (our Technology categorisation is, as ever, our broad definition which adds 13 brands to the BrandZ category – mainly from their Telecoms and online only retailers sectors):

  • The top 4 overall most valuable brands are from the technology sector
  • 6 of the overall top 10 are from the technology sector
  • 11of the overall top 20 are from this tech sector
  • 32 of the 100 are from this tech sector
  • Of the Top 20 risers (the greatest value increases over 2013)  a staggering 9 are techs (Tencent + 97%,  Movistar +56%, Facebook +68%, BT +61%, Baidu +46%, Yahoo +44%, Amazon +41%,  Google +40%  and Siemens +36%.)
  • 3 of the 7 newcomers to the top 100 are techs Twitter at #71 {the highest new entrant) Linkedin at #78 and PayPal at #97

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Nick Cooper, managing director of Millward Brown Optimor commented “Google has been hugely innovative in the last year with Google Glass, investments in artificial intelligence and a multitude of partnerships that see its Android operating system becoming embedded in other goods such as cars,”

Last year we thought Google might make #1 which has happened but our hoped for top 5 for Amazon just d out on a top 5 position.

Next year we reckon Google will stay there Apple & IBM could both move down the charts allowing some uplift for Amazon. Tencent will also likely make further huge strides.

We’ll leave you with their Top 100 countdown video.

UK & US Screen habits and 4 Myths for Marketers

GfK has done some research for Facebook on screen utilisation in the UK and the US which throws up few marked differences.

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In, almost, their words:

“Facebook commissioned international market research agency GfK to perform a study of more than 2,000 people in both the UK and the US, to explore people’s behaviour across multiple devices (including smartphones tablets and laptops or PCs) and the resulting implications for marketers.

The study of over 4,000 online adults across the UK and US found that people feel a different connection to each device, and that each plays a distinct role as people switch between devices during their daily routine”

The only significant difference seem to be that:

  • We share our tablets a bit more with others and
  • More of us use three devices in a day

The main reason for switching from one device to another during  a session/activity is to get a larger screen they reckon.

We’ll let you use your largest screen to accommodate their infographic!

Now those four myths. They come from the CEO of Chartbeat  Tony Haile in a Time article and are:

  1. We read what we’ve clicked on (apparently 55% of us spend less than 15 seconds on a page!)
  2. The more we share the more we read (On content visited among articles they tracked with social activity, there were only one tweet and eight Facebook likes for every 100 visitors.)
  3. Native advertising is the saviour of publishing (On a typical article two-thirds of people exhibit more than 15 seconds of engagement, on native ad content that plummets to around one-third.)
  4. Banner ads don’t work (66% of attention on a normal media page is spent below the fold.)

We certainly go with the length of time on a page scenario – we tend to ignore anything below 30 seconds! Which accounts for a little over 60% of our pages visited in the last year!

Valuing connectivity

As part of his address to the Mobile World Congress in Barcelona Mr Zuckerberg also mentioned Deloitte‘s report Value of connectivityEconomic and social benefits of expanding internet access which was produced for Facebook, basically in support of’s mission of extending the internet to the 2/3 of the world’s population who currently have no access.

As detailed in the important Notice from Deloitte, repeated in full below, this is an assessment and they go to some lengths in detailing its scope & limitations.

In spite of all the caveats it’s definitely worth reading.

The, sort of, headlines are :

  • Internet connectivity has already changed many aspects of the lives of individuals in developed economies and provided far-reaching economic and social benefits. Extending these opportunities is critical to accelerating economic and social growth in developing economies, while enabling the transition from a resource-based to a knowledge-based economy.
  • Deloitte estimates that the resulting economic activity could generate $2.2 trillion in additional GDP, a 72% increase in the GDP growth rate, and more than 140 million new jobs.
  • Internet-enabled devices are already transforming the way healthcare professionals operate in developing countries by allowing remote diagnosis and more efficient ways of treatment.
  • Deloitte estimates that by extending internet penetration another 640 million children may be able to access the internet and the wealth of information it makes available while they study.
  • Governments should recognise the importance of the internet in complementing the delivery of healthcare, education and other social services and should promote investment in the development of innovative solutions in these areas targeted to their communities
  • The internet allows all of the world to join the knowledge economy.

Important Notice from Deloitte

This report (the “Report”) has been prepared by Deloitte LLP (“Deloitte”) for Facebook Inc. (“Facebook”) on the basis of the scope and limitations set out below.

The Report has been prepared solely for the purposes of assessing the economic and social impact of extending internet access. It should not be used for any other purpose or in any other context, and Deloitte accepts no responsibility for its use in either regard including their use by Facebook for decision making or reporting to third parties.

The Report is provided exclusively for Facebook’s use under the terms of the contract between Deloitte and Facebook. No party other than Facebook is entitled to rely on the Report for any purpose whatsoever and Deloitte accepts no responsibility or liability or duty of care to any party other than Facebook in respect of the Report and/or any of its contents.

As set out in the Contract, the scope of our work has been limited by the time, information and explanations made available to us. Where information contained in the Report has been obtained from third party sources they are clearly referenced in the appropriate sections of the Report. Any results from the analysis contained in the Report are reliant on the information available at the time of

writing the Report and should not be relied upon in subsequent periods.

Accordingly, no representation or warranty, express or implied, is given and no responsibility or liability is or will be accepted by or on behalf of Deloitte or Facebook or by any of their respective partners, employees or agents or any other person as to the accuracy, completeness or correctness of the information contained in this document or any oral information made available and any such liability is expressly disclaimed.

All copyright and other proprietary rights in the Report remain the property of Deloitte LLP and/or Facebook and any rights not expressly granted in these terms are reserved.

This Report and its contents do not constitute financial or other professional advice, and specific advice should be sought about your specific circumstances. In particular, the Report does not constitute a recommendation or endorsement by Deloitte or Facebook to invest or participate in, exit, or otherwise use any of the markets or companies referred to in it. To the fullest extent possible, both Deloitte and Facebook disclaim any liability arising out of the use (or non-use) of the Report and its contents, including any action or decision taken as a result of such use (or non-use).

There’s strength / shakti in numbers

As Mr Zuckerberg was not only explaining his $19 billion acquisition of Whatsapp  at the Mobile World Congress yesterday but also extolling the virtues of’s vision Unilever were announcing a rather interesting, and we think highly relevant, partnership with It is likely one of the 3 to 5 partnerships Mark mentioned yesterday as taking place over the next few years.

As we previously pointed out 2/3 of the unconnected world are in Asia with likely 2.5 billion in India and China.

Unilever reckon that only 13% of  the Indian population has internet access and with 17.5% of the worlds population that’s a big number possibly in total terms some ¾ of a billion over 14 year olds. Over 70% of the Indian population live in rural areas.

The partnership will carry out a comprehensive study to examine the opportunities to increase internet adoption in rural communities.

Unilever or rather their Indian operation Hul (Hindustan Unilever Limited) already have developed a network around the estimated 640,000 small Indian villages most of which are “hard to reach”. As part of their “shakti” (meaning strength in Sanskrit) project started around the turn of the century they are looking to have around 75,000 micro-entrepreneurs operating a rural distribution initiative by next year. They had 48,000 in 2012.

They describe the business model as being “… centred on partnerships with the government-supported and microcredit-financed village self-help groups. The self-help groups composed predominantly of women.

This was not only because women tended to be its main consumers, but also because of the belief that giving additional income to women would result in greater benefits for the household as a whole and enhance livelihood for the family.

This model has been guided by the belief that the private sector can help create solutions to social challenges through innovative strategies that meet both business and social objectives. By promoting micro-enterprise, our initiative not only made great business sense but also had deep social impact.

Now Project Shakti has provided business opportunity to the male member of the family too, who could service outlets not only in their own village but also of the nearby villages.

In 2010-11, Shaktimaan initiative was introduced under which men of the Shakti families are given bycycles to cover surrounding villages to increase HUL’s distribution and sales as well as enhance the income of Shakti families. There are now 30,000 Shaktimaans across India.

Each shaktimaan covers 5-6 villages in his vicinity which is a larger area than a woman, Shakti amma, can cover on foot.”

Originally set up to distribute traditional Unilever products like Lifebouy Lux & Surf plus the local offerings such as Kissan Fair & Lovely and Wheel they are already branching out and are introducing alliances with telecom & banking companies.

This partnership we think will be really worth watching as it appears to be based on practical grass roots experience of a hugely significant market in terms of the unconnected.

We check our devices for updates at least every half hour

KANA software a leading customer service solution provider recently acquired by Verint have done some recent representative polling of UK adults to check the frequency that we  check our devices by age, gender and activity.

Unsurprisingly the younger you are, in general, the more frequent is your response apart from the 55-64 year olds who possibly haven’t got time as they prepare for retirement!

In terms of what we are checking on various devices and their frequency the dreaded email heads the list although Twitter is up there near the top well ahead of facebook.

Most frequently checked devices – all age groups
Email on smartphone  36.00
Twitter for replies 39.00
Phones for texts 48.00
Missed calls 49.25
PC or laptop for email 54.00
Facebook for messages 57.00
Checking voicemail  65.00
Source: Kana


Scarily we apparently spend 14 days a year complaining or waiting to complain. KANA explain “The average UK adult spends a “fraughtnight” — or nearly two weeks — each year waiting for service, making complaints and using digital channels to direct their ire at companies that provide poor service.

The average UK consumer has used 7.4 channels of electronic communication in the past six months. Amongst 18-to-24 year olds, this figure rises to 8.4 channels. The figure is lowest in the 65+ age bracket, but even this age band uses 6.2 methods of electronic communication.”

Long live facebook

The death of facebook has been greatly exaggerated according to GWI Social which is GlobalWebIndex’s quarterly report (Q4 2013) on the latest global trends in social platform usage.

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Their Q4 2013 report has facebook at the top of virtually every Social network statistic apart from the changes in active usage between Q2 and Q4 last year where the top five are:

  1. Instagram + 23%
  2. Reddit +13%
  3. Linkedin +9%
  4. Tencent Weibo +9%
  5. Yammer +8%

Facebook fell by 3% and the biggest looser was Myspace at -12%

Their study was conducted among 170,000 social media users in 32 counties which they reckon represents 89 percent of the global Internet population.

80% of the Global Top Ten Innovators are Techs

Booze&co. on Tuesday published their 2013 Global Innovation 1000 Study with the subheader/byline : Navigating the Digital Future. We think it could equally have used the present tense as (again using our broad definition) the top 5 and 8 out of the top ten qualify. (The logo you may not recognise is Tesla Motors)

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One, to us striking, increase is yet again the rise & rise of Amazon. It’s on an even steeper ascendancy than Samsung!

As far as we understand it Biooz&co. get together the highest R & D spend for 1,000 global quoted companies using published information through June of this year. They then survey 400 industrialists to quantify the ranking of the innovators.

Simply in R& D spend amongst the top 5 innovators they reckon their spend, its overall ranking and % spend of revenue is:


  • Apple $3.4bn / (42) / 2.2%
  • Google $6.8bn /  (12) / 13.5%
  • Samsung $12.4 / (2)  / 5.8%
  • Amazon $4.6bn / (30)  / 7.5%
  • 3M $1.6bn / (85) / 5.5%

Looking at it another way the top 1,000 they record as spending a total of $638bn so Samsung managed nearly 2% of this and Google just over1%. That’s a lot!

Using their definition Software & Internet companies had the highest increase in R& D spending this year increasing by 22.1%. This would include Google, Amazon, Microsoft, IBM and Facebook. Computing  & Electronics which includes Apple and Samsung grew a mere 2.%. They classify 3M in Industrials which had a 5.4% increase in the year.

Booz&co. highlight the use of digital enablers within R & D spend and have a rather clever interactive tool you can play with  which shows many of their features.

Their words say:

“Overall, companies spend an average of 8.1% of their R&D budget on digital enablers; the Software & Internet, Aerospace & Defense, and Health industries spend the highest proportions

These tools fall into two categories: “Productivity Enablers“ and “Market and Customer Insight Enablers”

  • Productivity Enablers are commonly used, must-have enablers to establish baseline productivity
  • Market and Customer Insight Enablers are emerging enablers focused on understanding market and customer needs”

We’ll leave you with their Digital Enablers video, which includes we thought some rather impressive graphics.