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Only 40% of social networkers say they would be receptive to opt-in advertising on their networks, and an ever lower number (20%) find behavior-based campaigns appealing, according InsightExpress research,? reports MarketingVOX.

The survey, which was undertaken to determine how willing people are to see advertising on social networks, generally finds low levels of overall interest in all forms of social network advertising.

In contrast to opt-in and behavior-based ads, however, acceptance of randomly generated ads varies according to which network they are viewed on, the survey found.? Social networkers were least likely to say they wanted to see ads on sites where they already are prominent. Nearly one-quarter (23%) of users on Facebook, Myspace,, LinkedIn and would want to see randomly generated ads, but that number rises to 43% among users of CafeMom, Twitter and Flickr users, who appear to be more receptive.

“Recognizing the rapid growth of social networks and social networking audiences, advertisers have focused on creative engagement and how to apply their brands within a new environment,” said Drew Lipner, VP/group director-Digital Media Measurement at InsightExpress.

Facebook, MySpace are Gateways

InsightExpress found that 43% of the online population has reported using a social network site and 71% of these users maintain profiles on at least two or more. The research also reveals that Facebook and MySpace are the primary gateway social networks – the ones with which users begin exploring social networking before potentially branching off into other sites:

  • Of social networkers that have only one profile, 46% chose MySpace and 36% chose Facebook.
  • Those with two or three profiles were broken down thus: 78% are on MySpace, 71% on Facebook, 22% on and 11% are on LinkedIn.
  • Of those with four or more profiles, 92% are on Facebook, 89% are on MySpace, 60% have a, 40% use, 33% have a LinkedIn, 11% have Flickr, and 10% have Twitter.

“The broad and exciting acceptance of social networking also reinforces the distinct need to develop targeted and relevant campaigns for this channel with the help of advanced measurement tools,” said Lipner.

Last month Netpop Research predicted potential opportunities for social network advertisers during the economic downturn.

About the research: The research was conducted by InsightExpress between Dec. 15, 2008 and Jan. 12, 2009 using RDD telephone sampling methodology. A total of 1,593 respondents completed the survey, and the results were weighted to reflect the online population.

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