Growth is slowing down: The New York Times reported that growth in Facebook visits was a “mere” 10% in the 12 months ending in October, down from 56% a year earlier. Meanwhile, Facebook is preparing for an IPO early next year. As George Colony, CEO of Forrester Research, said at the LeWeb conference, “Social is running out of hours. Social is also running out of people.” Companies are not able to generate value (aka return on investment): I wrote about the holy grail of social media ROI more than a year ago, and eMarketer published a flurry of research this month. Some of the mind-numbing statistics are that only 8% of marketers could attribute ROI for all of their investments in social media, while 60% still count fans, followers and “likes.” This translates to 2 in 5 marketers having little confidence in their ability to measure social media campaigns, according to a Chief Marketer study. Corporate investments are decreasing: According to a University of Massachusetts Dartmouth study, “social media use among America’s largest companies is losing steam.” Their study, which focused on the Fortune 500, found no growth in corporate blogs, while use of Facebook and Twitter grew only 2%. This certainly is consistent with discussions with my peers in the industry.
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