Is the “Shiny New Toys” era of social media coming to an end?  Has the marketing community finally come to an agreement on how to measure success in social media?  Just how important is mobile marketing anyway?

These are just a few of the questions raised at BlogWorld New Media Expo in New York City, a major conference and tradeshow for bloggers, podcasters, and social media leaders.  We spent much of last week at BlogWorld and a grand old time was had by all, but, more importantly, we came away with some fantastic information on the latest in digital communications technology, marketing trends, consumer data, and much more.

We’ll be posting about what we learned at Blogworld all week, but we’ll start with some basics: the latest data on social media use in America.

On the opening day of BlogWorld, Tom Webster of Edison Research presented a new report on social media use titled “The Social Habit 2012: How Americans Real Use Social Media.”  Some of the best tidbits from Webster’s research were:

  • More than half of social networkers are between the ages of 12-34, but the greatest growth is being seen in the 45+ age group.
  • 54% of Americans 12+ have a profile on Facebook (80% of all 12-17-year-olds have a Facebook profile)
  • 13% of Americans have a LinkedIn profile
  • 10% of Americans are on Twitter (an estimated 26 million people)
  • 71% of LinkedIn users have four-year college degree
  • 22% use a social networking site several times a day (around 58 million people)
  • 4 in 10 Twitter users use it nearly every day or more frequently.
  • 76% of Twitter users are posting updates, up from 47% in 2010
  • 43% of Americans say they hear Twitter mentioned “almost every day.”
  • The majority of social networkers own smart phones.

Tomorrow we’ll expand on some of this data and provide some new research on mobile marketing.  We’ll also post our interview with mobile marketing expert and author, Simon Salt.

In the meantime, check out this word cloud based on the notes we took throughout the conference.  This should give you an idea of the conference’s most-discussed topics and ideas (Looks like “social” and “content” were pretty important, no?):

Wordle: Blogworld Notes