Social Networks and Blogs Take Up Most of Our Internet Time

When you’re cruising around the internet, how much of your time is spent on a social network or blog? According to a new study published by Nielsen, those two categories eat up 23% of internet usage overall. This is double online gaming, which comes in at number two and after that, it takes 75 different categories to account for the remaining 35% of time spent.

Battle of the Sexes

Talking boys against the girls, the girls rule social media with the exception of LinkedIn and Wikia. It doesn’t look like Google+ was part of the survey and though I have no proof to back it up, that feels like it’s leaning more toward the men than the women. (Does anyone have numbers on that?)

Apps and Video Rise to the Top of Mobile Marketing Mix

Earlier this week, Frank took you through the MillennialMedia S.M.A.R.T report for Q2. Now I’m here with a closer look at the month of July, specifically the Post-Click Campaign Action Mix.

“Watch Video” showed the biggest growth with a 69% jump month-over-month. This is likely due to the heavy push from movie studios promoting their summer blockbusters and it made it one of the top three actions along with “Enroll /Join/Subscribe”.

Also tying for the top spot was “Application Downloads” which grew 12% month-over-month.

Coming right behind the leaders is “Mocial,” with growth of 34% month-over-month. It’s fun to note that “Place Call” dropped from 42% in May to only 21% in July. In the next ten years, I imagine we’ll have to drop the word “phone” all together and simply go with mobile device.

17 Percent of Photobucket Users Upload Video Once a Day

I have a digital movie camera, but for the life of me, I can’t remember where it is. It’s not that I’ve stopped taking movies, I just use my phone to do it.

A TNS survey says that 46% of all mobile phone owners use the video camera app and 62% use the still camera. That’s up a smidgen over last year, but growth is growth.

eMarketer reports that online photo sharing service Photobucket is bursting at the seams with 45% of members saying they upload at least one video a week and 17% uploading one video per day. 9% of their members said they upload multiple videos a day. That’s pretty amazing when you realize that as recently as 2001, we were using cassette tapes to record our home movies.

Layaway Returns to Wal-Mart

78% of people who responded to Fannie Mae’s latest survey said they thought the economy was headed down the wrong track and for the fourth month in a row, there’s been an increase in the number of people reporting a financial decline.

Wal-Mart believes it, because they’re doing something they haven’t done in awhile — offering holiday layaway on toys and electronics.

When I was a kid, layaway was as common as the bank Christmas Club. It was the perfect way to spread out gift-buying expenses albeit a strain on the gas tank as you drove back to the store every week to plunk down the payment due. As credit cards became more popular, layaway faded into the background and Wal-Mart discontinued the program in 2006.

Bloggers Miffed by the Old Bait and Switch

A few weeks ago, a select number of food bloggers were invited to take part in a special event hosted by celebrity chef George Duran. The event was to feature a “a delicious four course meal” at an exclusive, underground Italian restaurant. They would talk about food trends, sample good wines, and though it wasn’t mentioned, promote a new product.

Bloggers aren’t dumb. Everyone who accepted the invitation knew that it was for PR purposes and they all expected a pitch. What they didn’t expect was a bait and switch and their reactions captured on hidden cameras.

The entire stunt was to promote Marie Callender’s frozen dinners. The bloggers, after talking extensively about fresh ingredients, natural foods and even food allergies, were served boxed lasagna and pie.

Marketers See Triple-Digit Rise in Mobile Coupon Use

Coupons are my life but mobile coupons. . . not so much. Like many Americans, I’m just beginning to navigate those choppy waters. According to stats from eMarketer, 15.6 million smartphone users will redeem a mobile coupon this year which is a 117% change from the prior year.

And though the numbers will continue to rise, the triple-digit returns are expected to level off by next year.

Part of the reason for the rise is that mobile coupons are becoming more common and thus easier to use. This week, I had a Buy 1 Get 1 meal special from a local restaurant that said I could print the coupon or simply show it to the waiter on my phone. I printed it because the phone has been an issue in the past. Waiters know how to deal with paper coupons but digital ones? Not so much.

One Quarter of American Adults Use a Location-Based Service

Though only a small percentage of adults use a check-in service like Foursquare, around a quarter of all American adults do use some kind of location-based service on the web or through their mobile phone.

The numbers come from our old friends at Pew and it points to a slow but steady rise in location, location, location.

When it comes to check-in services, only 4% of all adults or 5% of mobile phone owners use such a service. The number jumps up to 12% if you look only at smartphone owners, which makes sense, since they’re the primary target.

28% of mobile phone owners allow the phone to use their current location in order to get directions or recommendations. That number climbs to 55% when you look at just smartphone users. Pretty impressive.