Social Is Becoming A “Mainstream Media Channel” For Brands: We Are Social

Social Is Becoming A “Mainstream Media Channel” For Brands: We Are Social

Australia is among 229 countries profiled in a report on the world’s digital, social and mobile use, issued this week by socially-led creative agency, We Are Social.

Kym Druitt
Posted by Kym Druitt

It shows that of Australia’s 24.14 million population, 88 per cent of people are active internet users, with 21.18 million accessing the internet via fixed and mobile connections.

“We’re a connected and highly social nation. We were relatively early adopters of social media and have continued to embrace it over time. This is why social has become a mainstream media channel and brands are only just beginning to realise the power of social to really drive growth in their businesses,” We Are Social’s managing director, Suzie Shaw, said.

We Are Social has produced its global report for the past three years, with last year’s analysis being read almost two million times on SlideShare.

The Digital in 2016 report charts the global rise of both M-Commerce and private messaging apps like Facebook Messenger and WhatsApp.

Report author Simon Kemp is We Are Social’s Regional Managing Partner, Asia. He says his 2016 report is a richer, more comprehensive report than ever before. It offers what Kemp calls “a healthy dose of global context, plenty of regional overviews and comparisons, followed by in-depth profiles of 30 of the world’s most important economies”.

This year’s profiles include new data on Facebook usage by age and gender, rankings of the top 10 social media platforms in each country and a slew of other internet, social and mobile stats.

One remarkable finding of the report is the pace of growth seen in digital, social and mobile globally – a somewhat surprising result considering global internet penetration is already approaching 50 per cent.

The key statistics for digital, social, and mobile media in 2016 are:

  • 3.42 billion internet users, equalling 46 per cent global penetration;
  • 2.31 billion social media users, delivering 31 per cent global penetration;
  • 3.79 billion unique mobile users, representing 51 per cent global penetration;
  • 1.97 billion mobile social media users, equating to 27 per cent global penetration.

To put this into context, since We Are Social’s January 2015 report, the numbers have increased as follows:

  • The number of reported internet users is up by 10 per cent, growing by 332 million;
  • The number of reported social media is up by 10 per cent, an increase of 219 million;
  • Unique mobile users increased by 4 per cent thanks to 141 million new users;
  • Mobile social media users leapt 17 per cent, adding 283 million new users.