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Mobile Users Check Facebook Often and From Everywhere. . .Even at the Gym

Facebook recently released the results of an IDC survey they sponsored called “Always Connected: How Smartphones and Social Keep Us Engaged.”

From the title and the fact that it was sponsored by Facebook, you can see where this is going. But this is one of those times where the potential bias doesn’t really matter because I don’t need a survey to tell me how connected we are to our mobile phones and social media.

But let’s talk about this interesting point:

facebook idc checkin

The people who figured into this number were 18-44 year-olds who owned either an iPhone or Android phone. 70% of the pool said they use their mobile phone to access Facebook and 61% did it daily. And not just once or twice, either. On average, they accessed Facebook nearly 14 times per day. The only thing they did more often was text.

Once they hit Facebook, they spent an average of 2.22 minutes before moving on to bigger and better things. What are we to make of this? Well, first we have to look at how they spent their time on Facebook:

facebook idc activitiesThe good news for marketers is that they spend the majority of their time reading their news feed. I’m surprised to see that the next most popular activity is responding and posting comments. Posting their own updates isn’t that important in the grand scheme and posting photos is barely a blip. What’s that all about? Photos and videos are a huge part of the Internet social scene and it’s even easier to post pics from a smartphone than from a computer because you’ve got the camera right in your hand.

Playing games is also near the bottom, but that’s likely due to the fact that Facebook games aren’t made for the small, mobile screen. And it looks like Facebook’s app center is a bust.

What really blew me away was this chart:

facebook when

Facebook is the dark blue bar, Twitter is the lighter blue and LinkedIn is orange.

Nearly half of the people surveyed are using Facebook while they run errands, shop, make dinner and while they workout? I’d guess the reason behind this is boredom. We’re so used to multitasking that we can’t just cook or stretch without seeing what our friends are up to. That’s sad.

The survey also found that 50% of mobile users hop on Facebook while at the movies. I’m okay with that as long as its pre and post movie but every time I go to the theater at least one person lights up the room with his cell while the movie’s running. There oughta be a law. . .

The Facebook / IDC survey is 25 pages of examples that show how attached we’ve become to both our mobile phones and social media. When asked why, most people said because it made them feel connected to family and friends. But social media also pushes a few other emotional buttons:

facebook feelings

You probably think I’m going to end this post with a sarcastic remark about how social media gets people excited. I would, but over the weekend, I got a personal Tweet from my favorite TV actor and excited doesn’t begin to cover it.

I may not check Facebook 14 times a day, but I do love my social media.