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Since 2007, Forrester has been tracking the growth of social behaviors. In an update of their Social Technographics Ladder, Forrester reports many social behaviors have reached a plateau, except for one.
The "profile" that keeps on growing are the Joiners, Forrester writes:
There is one behavior that is not plateauing, nor is it likely to stop growing for some time: Joiners. These are people who maintain a social networking profile. While growth in other behaviors have stagnated, Joiners grew again from 2009 to 2010.
As social media has become a major communication channel for many people, it becomes hard to avoid for others. Even those with no intent to share continue to join so they can keep in touch with friends, children and grandchildren.
Today, avoiding social networks is about as easy to do as avoiding email—it’s possible, but it comes at a substantial cost in terms of relationships and knowledge.
The fact that Joiners continue to grow means marketers must continue to focus their attention and budgets on social networks in 2011. More people will spend more time and get more information through social networks, and where consumer time and attention goes, so will marketer investment.
What does this mean for Social TV?
If we take the top four profiles of the Social Technographics Ladder: Creators, Conversionalists, Critics and Collectors, there are many opportunities for lean-in Social TV experiences. All "active" profiles that co-create experiences together with (other) content providers.
The fact that Forrester reports a growth in Joiners mean that eventually a part of these Joiners will climb up the ladder to more active profiles and will take part in the process of prosuming content and experiences.
In a previous article on AppMarket, we reported on the staggering figures that almost half of the British use Social Media while watching television.
These are important figures to understand the transforming (co-creational) industry, not only in hands of companies.
Transmedia and multi-screen concepts are part of the Social TV experience, offering users a companion application and extra entry in the TV content consumption.
A second more profound implication is the actual TV content creation with help of the viewers which can be accounted especially the Creators.
Not only will a part of the Joiners shift to more active profiles but the large percentage also indicates and sustain that people visit their social network profiles and keep a close eye on what's happening in their network. This sustains the result of another research that indicated the preference for Facebook ratings (Likes) so that friends could see what others found interesting to watch.
Another implication is the increasing importance of creating an interoperable social experience with -for instance- Facebook or any other exisiting social network.
Social behavior doesn't stand still, even if for most profiles a plateau is reached, technological innovations could spur new and/or enhanced social digital behavior.
To businesses: Partaking the television set into social ubiquity is a first step into transforming the conventional TV networks into social TV networks (Social TV).