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Twitter Fade? Edison and Arbitron Report Growth in Twitter Usage Slows.

Twitter Fade? Edison and Arbitron Report Growth in Twitter Usage Slows.

Edison Research teased a social media research report to be released later this spring. The conduct the research every year with Arbitron and the teaser had to do with the growth of Twitter. Research is showing that although the awareness of Twitter is nearly universal growth in usage has slowed. Growth from 2010 to 2011 was 7% to 8%.  From 2009 to 2010 the increase was 2% to 7%. 8% of Americans 12+ is approximately 20 million people.

Tom Webster is Vice President, Strategy and Marketing for Edison Research. He says he is not ready to say that Twitter usage has stalled. "However, one cannot escape the fact that usage growth appears to be slowing, even before Twitter’s long-awaited revenue model has found a foothold. I think content creators took to Twitter pretty early as a natural outlet to share and promote their work. In a way, it’s not really fair to compare Twitter and Facebook, in that they serve different roles. I would say, though, that Twitter has yet to really articulate its value to mainstream consumers – we are bombarded with media messages to “follow us on Facebook and Twitter” without articulating the difference between the two, and why one would want to do both."

Webster says most of the social network usage that we and other sources have measured is driven primarily by Facebook usage. "Facebook’s symmetrical network design encourages people to share elements of their lives under the premise that those updates are only visible to people they actually know. Sharing elements of our lives with friends is a universal drive. Twitter is a different dog, clearly – based upon the data I have seen (and we have collected) about bloggers and other content creators, I suspect there is a hard cap on the percentage of Americans who have a predilection to create content for people they don’t know."

Later this spring, Edison and Arbitron will release an update to a 2010 report, The Social Habit, which is said to have new insights on social media usage, behaviors and trends.

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