Social media has its serious side for business
There is a thriving Lloyd’s List page on LinkedIn so please feel free to sign up and join the debate
THE number one film in the US right now is The Social Network, which dramatises the birth of Facebook and the early tensions between its founders Mark Zuckerberg and Eduardo Savarin.
The two geeky Harvard students, along with some of their college room mates, launched the social networking website in February 2004, since when it has taken the world by storm. Some 500m people — around one human being in every six currently on the planet — has signed up.
Yet social media still has a reputation for being the province of teenagers and students. It is, for instance, blocked in many workplaces, for fear that the cubicle rats will idle away too much time chatting online with friends rather than maintaining the accounts receivable ledger.
That is far from the case, if a new survey conducted by this newspaper is anything to go by. Many serious business people, including those in the maritime industries, find that Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, MySpace and YouTube can have serious professional uses.
There is also evidence of widespread addiction to iPhones and Blackberries across the shipping sector. According to our research, over 90% of respondents use a mobile device for work. Some 54% say that this helps them to keep up with breaking news, while 35% browse industry news and 15% access Twitter or other social platforms.
Interestingly, the split between respondents who use applications and those who do not was almost even, with 48% saying yes and 52% saying no. But news apps and social network apps are most commonly used in leisure time.
At present, 84% of respondents do not use Twitter. That said, slightly more than half can anticipate doing so at some point in the future. Respondents use microblogging most commonly to keep in touch with friends and family (58%), keep in touch with work colleagues (39%), and to access breaking news (39%). You can follow this newspaper’s output at the Twitter handle @LloydsList.
LinkedIn and Facebook are the most commonly used professional social networks, used by 40% and 34% of respondents respectively. Some 27.5% said they used them daily, and a further 30.5% used them weekly. Some 13.7% log on at least once a month, while 28.2% do so rarely.
There is a thriving Lloyd’s List page on LinkedIn so please feel free to sign up and join the debate. You might also want to look at a number of other maritime-related forums on that platform.
This social media survey has now been made available for non-subscribers. To complete the survey click here.
Posted by social media marketing