European consumers top social charts

11 October 2011

NEW YORK: Consumers in Spain, the UK and Germany are among the most engaged social networking audiences worldwide, a multimarket study from McKinsey has shown.

The consultancy surveyed 5,000 people in eight markets, and found Spanish internet users spent 375 minutes per day using a personal computer, ahead of South Korea's 359 minutes and the 308 minutes logged by the US.

Germany and the UK each registered over 280 minutes here, sliding to 159 minutes in China, 136 minutes in Japan and just 64 minutes in India.

Similarly, Spanish consumers displayed the greatest interest in social networking, dedicating 68 minutes a day to this pastime, beating their UK counterparts on 61 minutes and German contributors on 42 minutes.

This figure reached 37 minutes for the US and 27 minutes in South Korea, but fell to 16 minutes for the Chinese sample and seven minutes apiece regarding India and Japan.

In contrast, instant messaging was more popular in South Korea and China, posting 39 minutes and 26 minutes per day respectively. Spain also yielded a total of 30 minutes here, followed by Germany on 20 minutes, one minute in front of the UK.

Email remained the leading communications tool in the US, on 41 minutes. The UK logged 40 minutes, with Germany on 37 minutes and Spain on 29 minutes, but China recorded just two minutes.

Meanwhile, adults in the UK, Germany and Spain spent over an additional 50 minutes browsing the web a day, with the US and Japan on slightly more than 30 minutes. China and India were both on around 25 minutes.

Turning to mobile, voice calls still command the most usage time in all markets. However, Spanish users devoted 16 minutes a day to social networks via this route, standing at 12 minutes for Germany, South Korea and the US, versus five minutes in Japan.

Aside from social networking, respondents dedicated approximately five minutes per day to surfing the net on a mobile, and a roughly equivalent amount of time to playing back video.

Exactly 33% of the UK panel frequently watch TV and go online simultaneously, as do 31% of Spaniards, 29% of Germans and 25% of Americans, compared with 17% of Japanese interviewees and 12% of Koreans.

Across these nations, 20% of people often worked on a PC while viewing broadcast material, reaching 15% concerning instant messaging services, 14% for sending text messages and 9% for email.

Data sourced from McKinsey; additional content by Warc staff