Adam T. Sutton

Social Media Marketing: Opportunity knocks worldwide

February 24th, 2012

Living in the U.S., we often use social media to reach domestic customers. Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn were popular here first, and that sticks with us. But as social networking expands worldwide, the size of the audience we could be reaching has multiplied.

Focusing exclusively on the U.S. would ignore 80% of the people on Facebook and Twitter, according to “It’s a Social World,” a report from comScore. On LinkedIn, it would ignore more than 60% of the audience (Note: You’ll need to provide an email address to download the report. It’s worth it.)


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The report is full of mindboggling stats like, “social networking captures nearly 1 out of every 5 minutes spent online worldwide,” and “social networking sites now reach 82% of the world’s online population, representing 1.2 billion users.”

If your company sells anywhere outside the U.S. (or ever hopes to), and you’re marketing through social media, then the report points to a world of opportunity. Social penetration among online audiences is above 90% in 35 of the 43 countries measured.

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Many of these countries have English-speaking residents who can link to content, retweet offers, and visit your website. Even if you do not sell to them, these people can improve your SEO and online authority, but you have to engage them.

“The importance of Facebook cannot be overstated,” the report declares, noting that Facebook is the largest social networking site in all but seven of the countries measured. Since Facebook provides marketers with a wealth of metrics, this is good news.

Ask yourself:

  • Are your products popular in a foreign country?
  • Could your content help someone in a foreign country?
  • Could you engage people outside the U.S. in any meaningful, helpful way?

If you think you spot an opportunity, you can market to this group as a segment of your audience. You can send status updates that are targeted by region on Facebook. You can target display ads by region on various social networks. In short, you can extend your social media marketing beyond the U.S. border.


Related Resources:

Getting Started with Social Media Marketing: How one company went from 0 to 630,000 Facebook post views

Social Media Marketing: GNC’s strategy for courting online influencers and adding 383,000 Facebook fans

Email Summit: Brian Solis on the connected consumer and the digitally evolving world

Email Summit: Integrating mobile, social and email marketing channels

Social Media Marketing: Going viral is so easy it’s hard

Adam T. Sutton

About Adam T. Sutton

Adam T. Sutton, Senior Reporter, MarketingSherpa
Adam generates content for MarketingSherpa's Email and Inbound Marketing newsletters. His years of experience in interviewing marketers and conveying their insights has spanned topics such as search marketing, social media marketing, ecommerce, email and more. Adam previously powered the content behind MarketingSherpa's Search and Consumer-marketing newsletters and carries that experience into his new role. Today, in addition to writing articles, he contributes content to the MarketingExperiments and MarketingSherpa blogs, as well as MECLABS webinars, workshops and summits.

Prior to joining MarketingSherpa, Adam was the Managing Editor at the Mequoda group. There he created content and promotions for the company's daily email newsletter and managed its schedule.

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