Social media and segmentation led the rankings of the most popular unbranded search terms or phrases entered on in 2011.

The continued worldwide growth in social media usage was reflected in its prominence among the search terms favoured by Warc clients. (For more details about the most popular material featured on Warc in 2011, click here.)

It was more than twice as popular as the next most widely-used unbranded search term: segmentation.

"Social media marketing" was also the ninth most popular search term over the last 12 months.

A little further down the list of most used search phrases came "paying the agency" and "choosing an agency", two perennial concerns of Warc clients.

Product placement and sponsorship were the next most popular channel-based search terms.

Elsewhere, some clients took a broad-brush approach, searching terms such as "advertising", "branding" and "marketing" - all likely to prompt large numbers of results from the Warc database. 

At the opposite end of the spectrum, some very specific searchers looked for "A journey to the centre of the earth", ostensibly a hunt for a 2004 Esomar paper by Nic Hall.

Perhaps it featured on a university reading list somewhere? Time for an updated version?

Data sourced from Warc