Mobile Social Media Up Nearly Fifty Percent in Past Year

Mobile social networking, or mocial, is when you use your phone to access Twitter, Facebook, Foursquare or any other social networking site. People have been doing it for a couple of years, but now that smartphones and social media apps are so prevalent, it’s become one of the most popular categories in mobile usage.

The chart comes from a webinar delivered by comScore titled ‘The State of the U.S. Mobile Advertising Industry and What Lies Ahead” The bars show usage comparisons between March 2010 and March 2011. At a quick glance, you can see that every category showed growth, with social networking and map usage on mobile up nearly 50%. Weather and news of all kinds grew in the 30% – 40% range. Even IMing got a double digit boost.

LinkedIn User Base Expands After IPO

LinkedIn got more than a rise in stock prices when they announced their IPO in May. They also gained 6.7% more users over the prior month. This is especially significant since they showed a 2.5% decline in April.

According to Bloomberg, LinkedIn is now poised to take over the number two spot from MySpace, who had 34.9 million unique users in May compared to LinkedIn’s 33.4. MySpace’s number sounds nice until you see that it’s a 48% decline from the same period in the prior year. Facebook is still number one, but new reports claim that they’re losing ground as well.

Could LinkedIn not only take over the number two spot but move to number one as well? Yes, and no.

Entertainment Ad Spending is Going Up, Up, Up

Those who predicted that the internet would kill TV were probably the same people that said TV would put movie theaters out of business. A look at entertainment and media ad spending so far this year proves otherwise.

Earlier this month, all of the big five TV networks showed gains in ad sales during the Upfronts in New York. CBS pulled in a projected $2.5 billion to $2.55 billion in TV ad sales compared to the $2.4 billion they made last year. NBC took in $1.7 billion compared to $1.6 billion last year.

Today, the New York Times is reporting on new stats from PricewaterhouseCoopers which shows that entertainment and media ad spending in 2010 grew by 5.4% compared with 2009.

Fans Find TV Tweets Very Engaging

Ten days ago, Jared Padalecki, one of the stars of the CW series Supernatural got a Twitter account. He started it after years of saying he never would and couldn’t even get his own name because of there are so many imposters on Twitter. He settled on @jarpad, announced it at a fan convention, then took a photo of his co-star at the convention as proof that it was really him.

As of this morning, Jarpad has 94,132 followers and they aren’t just sitting idle. Many of them complied with Jared’s wishes to vote for a band he produces in a House of Blues contest, shooting them up to number one.

Then there’s Jared’s co-star Misha Collins. He has 219,000 followers and parlayed his Twitter fame into a charity that raised around $100,000 last year for an orphanage in Haiti.

Apple Loosens the Reins on Digital Subscription Sales

Earlier this year, Apple launched a program that allowed digital magazine publishers to easily sell subscriptions through iTunes. Unfortunately, the deal came with some hefty restrictions that made it hard for small publishers to make a profit. Now, Apple has decided to relax the rules and in turn, will probably make more money than ever.

The original rule required publishers who used iPad or iPhone apps to sell their subscriptions through the app, giving Apple a 30% cut. Under the new rules, this is no longer a requirement.

Even harsher was a requirement stating that publishers who did sell through iTunes, couldn’t offer a cheaper alternative anywhere else, including their own websites. The new rules allow publishers to set the price points any way they see fit.

When it Comes to Advice People Prefer Strangers Over Friends

We’ve all been told not to take candy from strangers, but advice is a whole different matter. According to a new report from Meebo, more than half the people surveyed went to someone they didn’t know when looking for advice on the web.

Here are some of the stats:

  • 53% of people said they want to get advice from someone who is knowledgeable about a topic, but whom they don’t know.
  • More than a third of the population (38%) turn to anonymous sources for product and service recommendations.
  • 41% of people would prefer to connect with “everyday experts” on travel information, whereas only 17% would turn to people they already know.
  • 43% would turn to unknowns for recipes or cooking-related content, while only 22% would connect with people they know.

Samit Says Social Gaming Killed the Soaps

For years, moms across the US took a break in the afternoons to watch the soaps on TV. It was their “me” time while the kids were in school and their husband was at work. A time to relax and drift away to another world where they didn’t have to worry about bills, dinner or family squabbles.

Now, says Jay Samit, CEO of SocialVibe, they turn to social gaming instead. He says social games have become the modern “Calgon Moment” for busy women who often feel life spiraling out of control around them.

“Now she can have the perfect farm or restaurant, a world that’s in order and it’s a very peaceful experience. That’s what killed the soap opera.”