Parks Associates Blog

Thursday, June 21, 2007

Survey Finds Social Networking Users Have Little Loyalty

Network-hopping, widgets & links connect, cross-pollinate the social networking market

MySpace users are chronically unfaithful, according to Parks Associates' "Web 2.0 & the New Net," a new report that focuses on the social networking market. Nearly 40% percent of MySpace users keep profiles on other social networking sites such as Friendster and Facebook. Loyalty among the smaller social networking sites is even lower, with more than 50% of all users actively maintaining multiple profiles.

These trends highlight a peculiar aspect of the market for social networking services. Nearly half of all social networkers regularly use more than one site; one in six use three or more. The result is an increasingly interlinked environment tied together by links, widgets, and the users themselves. "MySpace is a growing ecosystem and one that ironically now extends beyond MySpace itself," said John Barrett, the lead author of the report, "Web 2.0 & the New Net."

In Barrett's view, this environment creates fertile ground for new social networking sites and application providers. "A handful of users are all it takes to connect new services to the MySpace-centered environment. From there it can begin to spread virally, assuming of course that it offers something people want."

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