The 2011 Social Media Landscape [Infographic]

As Social Media continues to boom and evolve, it’s sometimes difficult to keep up with the latest trends and changes. What could have worked last year and the year before, may not necessarily work as well this year.

I think anybody in their right mind will tell you that a Social Media Marketing strategy is a must if you’re in business. Seeing that you go about it properly that is – and not just “be everywhere, for everyone”. Depending on who and where your target audience is, it’s usually best to have a clear focus of what channels to use and how.

Today, marketing platforms and tools can no longer afford to dismiss or neglect the magnitude of the social component – a way for consumers to actively engage and have a two-way or multi-way conversation with brands.

But then again, if you’re reading this, you probably know that already.

The good folks at recently updated their practical Guide to the Social Media Landscape to reflect 2011. This fantastic roadmap can help marketers better understand each tool as well as how (and where) it can help them execute a successful online campaign.

In an effort to simplify the results for you, I’ve categorized the best Social Media tools (sites) for each of the 4 main groups – according to CMO’s Guide.

  • Customer SatisfactionFacebook, Twitter, YouTube, Tumblr
  • Brand Exposure – Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, YouTube, Digg, Tumblr
  • Traffic to Your SiteDigg, StumbleUpon
  • SEO – Flickr, YouTube, Digg, StumbleUpon, Tumblr

What surprised me most with these results is to see that Twitter isn’t included as a main source of Traffic. I speak for myself and many I’m sure, when I say that the little birdie has flown quite a few people my way – actually, it’s my #1 source of traffic.

Another interesting observation is that compared to last year’s chart,, who was then one of the best tools for SEO, has completely been omitted from this year’s guide – along with Yahoo’s Buzz. In all honesty, this doesn’t surprise me too much, as I rarely hear of either these days. But again – I speak for myself.

It’s rather interesting to see the evolution of each of these platforms in the last 12 months. I’m beginning to wonder who and 97th Floor, the SEO and Social Media firm behind the analysis, will put to the guillotine in 2012. Reddit maybe? What do you think?

In any case, take a look at this detailed infographic and let me know your thoughts. For a larger view, click here.

Do you agree with the analysis and findings?

Is there another tool that’s working better for you?

What’s your #1 source of traffic?

social media landscape The 2011 Social Media Landscape [Infographic]






If you enjoyed this post, make sure you subscribe to my RSS feed!
You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.

About the Author

Ingrid Abboud aka 'Griddy' is a whole lot of things with a ridiculous amount of interests. For one, I'm a Social Media enthusiast with a tremendous passion for writing and blogging. I'm also a pretty cool Copywriter but a more serious MarCom Consultant. But most of all, I'm the proud owner and driving force behind - A Kinda Social Media Journal with Net News & more.

  • Travel! Round the Globe

    very nice put up, i actually love this web site, carry on it

  • chaitanya battaluri

    This is a great article . I never know were you get such great images for your post. I have to praise the images. The Image here depicts all what you want to say in the best possible way. great post

    • Ingrid Abboud

       Hey Chaitanya,

      Thanks so much. I do spend quite a bit of time looking for not only for the idea but for the best image to go with it. In this case – I found the infographic and all I needed were the “right” words to accompany it :).


  • Fast Printing

    I am not a creative person who can design something or plan strategies.If I plan to go for social media marketing profile, will I have problems in it?Is SEO knowledge required in this field?Thanks

  • nursery furniture manchester

    The daily bleeding of thousands of jobs will soon turn our economic crisis into a political crisis. The street protests, strikes and riots that have rattled France, Turkey, Greece, Ukraine, Russia, Latvia, Lithuania, Bulgaria and Iceland will descend on us.

  • Waterford crystal

    With social media being a prominent mode to gain popularity, companies streamline their efforts to build an entire presence through twitter, face-book & other popular social media outlets.

  • Brandon Yanofsky

    I agree with you Ingrid

    I get a lot of traffic from Twitter, and most people I talk with agree.

    I wonder why they think twitter isnt as great at driving traffic?

    • Ingrid Abboud

      Hey Brandon,

      I’m truly sorry for my very late reply. I’m not getting a lot of the email notifications – they’ve all been going to junk lately – I have no clue why – so I’m just trying to catch up and go through posts and my WP dashboard seeing who I’ve left hanging unintentionally :(.

      I get a ton of traffic from Twitter as well. I was surprised by that. I have no clue why they wouldn’t consider it as a main source of traffic for sites and especially blogs.

      Strange – but I guess they must have some reason through their findings – although I’m not really convinced. Oh well….

      Just goes to show – that not everything is right for “us”. Each one has to do what works best for them.

      Cheers Brandon and thanks for being so  patient on this one. My bad entirely. 

      • Brandon Yanofsky

        You’re lucky. I was this close to never reading your blog again >:(

        Just kidding. :)

        • Ingrid Abboud

          In that case…phewww! 😉 

  • AllieRambles

    I am looking at the chart and wondering what are the demographics these findings are based upon? Are they for CMO’s demographics or just in general. If they are generalized I can’t take them as serious.

    Obviously, SEO factors won’t change much, either the site gives you good SEO or not. But as for traffic to your site, demographics of a feeding site really matter. I don’t use Reddit because my audience doesn’t seem to present there. For me, the Traffic to my Site column would read closer to red.

    Am I missing something?

    Also, I agree Twitter is a great traffic generator. It is fast and social and easy. Perfect for small conversation and teasers to get people back to your site.

    LMK if I am off my rocker with this demographics thing?

    • Ingrid Abboud

      Hey Allie,

      Appreciate your analysis on this.
      I think that although it’s a great infographic which clearly explains each tool – I believe that each blogger may have different results than the one’s provided. For me – Twitter is my number source of traffic – as is the case with most people who have commented here – and yet it isn’t included as a source of graphic in the image.

      I use to have a little Reddit button – just because that little robot fella was so cute haha but in all honesty, I don’t think I’ve ever seen much traffic – or any for that matter – from there. I recently removed it as it seems not many people use it. I am seeing however more and more traffic from StumbleUpon even though I haven’t been giving it the importance it deserves. I’ve started to use it a little more now though – but still not the way I should or that many people do.

      The introduction to the infographic that came with it – from CMO – doesn’t really state the demographics they are basing these results on. My best guess would be that they’re in general although I would find that hard to believe – so there must be some kind of more detailed information that I may have missed – maybe on the part of 97th floor – the company that analyzed and designed this graphic. If you look at the one from last years – you will notice some differences in that some tools no longer exist – such as Buzz and Delicious – and that the categories for each have sometimes differed. So I can only presume that they’ve conducted a thorough study to come up with the results.

      You’re definitely not off your rocker’s hahaha. I tend to look into these just as much sometimes when I’m in doubt or if I’m curious to know how they came about the numbers or information.

      Thanks again for your great comment.
      Wishing you a happy Friday.


      • WebMechanix

        The reddit robot is pretty cool looking — I’m surprised that Reddit didn’t get as much love in this post.

        I’m not a reddit junkie or anything, but whenever we post to it, there is nice influx of traffic for that day. If you segment that traffic in Analytics (I <3 Analytics btw)… you'll find they are definitely NOT the most productive users of your site (high bounce rates, low pageviews, etc..) —

        BUT – (I think) the reddit community can be great for certain industries and types of blog posts, namely anything that has viral potential. Funny/painful videos, cute cats, and celebrity impersonation come to mind.

        I'd love to hear more reddit success or horror stories… please reply to this comment if you have one!

        • Ingrid Abboud

          Hey Arsham,

          As I was just telling Brandon up there – I’m so sorry to keep you waiting for a reply. For the last few weeks all my email notifications have been going to junk and it’s been pretty tough keeping up and trying to make sure I’ve replied to everyone in a timely manner. So thanks for your patience – I know you’ve been chilling here a while :(.

          To tell you honestly – I rarely use Reddit and although I love their little robot logo dude lol – I took it off my floater several weeks ago as I realized people barely use it here. But I guess – it’s different for each blog and person. I think Digg seems to have taken the reigns in that field and if I were to have to guess what tool would be left out of next years landscape infographic – I would say Reddit. But again – I’m no expert – I’m just calling it the way their stats are seeing things and the way I see it around the blogosphere.

          I’m curious to know Reddit stories as well now :). I’d love to keep that little fella’ haha.

          Thanks again for being such a good sport and hanging out here. I’m doing my best to try and fix the junk folder issue but so far… :( Grrrrrr….


  • Thomas

    Hi Ingrid
    Very interesting infographic. It is a great way to compare the different services. Of the services mentioned above I would say that Twitter, digg and StumbleUpon is my best traffic sources.

    Cheers Ingrid

    • Ingrid Abboud

      Hey Thomas,

      Thanks for sharing your power tools. Infographics are always a great way to showcase information. I’m a big fan of them – but in this case here – I think each blogger has their own thoughts on the different groups and how they work for them.

      Have a good weekend.

  • web marketing

    Thanks for these priceless directions..

  • Kavya Hari

    Actually, it’s one of the latest info-graphic points to all the folks. Thank you so much for given valuable post on here :)

    • Ingrid Abboud

      Hey Kavya,

      Glad you liked this. Hope it’s useful to ya.
      Thanks for stopping by.


  • Erica Allison

    Hi Miss Ingrid! I loved the infographic, but like you, John and Davina find it surprising that Twitter is not a major traffic source. I’ve not been at it as long as you guys, but for me, it’s #1 for driving people to my blog. What is very interesting to me is the blog/traffic connection. Personally, I only began really blogging in January of this year. I looked back at my traffic stats just now (I LOVE #s) and saw a huge shift from pre-blogging days to today. Facebook and direct links in my email signature (big pet peeve of mine when folks forget their web address in their email signature) were the number 2 and number 1 traffic sources for Dec/Jan. Fast forward to Feb and March and Twitter moves into 2nd place behind direct links and bumps FB to 3rd in Feb and then completely off the map in March. Best of all, since I began blogging my website traffic jumped by 90% (WOW). Dang, that’s a case for blogging!

    Sorry for the tangent on my own personal analytics review, but your post and the infographic inspired it. And to Howie’s point, those infographics are light on data and seem a bit more qualitative than quantitative, but they do make you scratch your head and think. For me, that’s always a plus. Thanks!

    • Ingrid Abboud

      Well hello there Erica :),

      Glad you liked this infographic – I’m a big fan of them in general.
      I think just about anyone who blogs and uses Twitter so the way it was meant would be surprised to see that the tool wasn’t listed as a main source of traffic. I’m not sure if that means bloggers (many) aren’t using it properly or if we’re just the lucky few lol.

      It’s funny that you mentioned email signatures – although I had my blog site included in mine I recently updated and use Wisestamp – not sure if you’re familiar with this email signature tool or not but it allows you include several things including your Twitter handle, your FB profile or group page, you last blog post or tweet and all the other Social Media tools and so forth. It’s pretty cool.

      It’s awesome to see your growth in such a short period of time – great of you to share what’s working for you. As for me – my first and second place are still Twitter and direct links or search engines.

      Thanks so much for your super comment. And yes – although infographics generally showcase a lot more quantitative info – this one purely shows the qualitative side – but again – it doesn’t mean it’s accurate for everyone as we can clearly see – to each his own tools 😉 lol.

      Hope you have a great weekend.
      Sorry for the late reply by the way.


  • davinabrewer

    Loves me pretty infographics, so helpful to have it all in a snapshot view.

    That said IDK about some of these. I mean, SU, Digg and Tumblr get lots of greens but then, I use neither. I’ve seen plenty of Tumblr pages, but mostly people just reblogging fun stuff with minimal interactions other than likes. have not seen much by way of strategic business use. The graphic mentioned Questions for Tumblr, but I have not seen that either. I know LI does and Quora is trying to tap that Q&A crowd, offer high level discussions that answer a certain topic on a specific question.

    A lot of these I think success goes back to strategy, how much you use something, how often, to what ends. Which is why I don’t think there will ever be ‘one tool to rule them all.’ Different audiences and users will be on different networks, so the crowd you’re trying to woo via FB may share the YT vid, but it’s not always going to attract the LI or Twitter influencer. So it’s probably a matter of integration, knowing which combo gives the most bang for the buck. FWIW.

    • Ingrid Abboud

      Hey Davina,

      I love infographics as well :). They’re such a great way to learn and remember information. I actually have an entire section/category on this blog that’s dedicated to them. Maybe when my stupid categories section will start working again properly – I can link to them again! Grrrr… Ever since I upgraded my WP last time – something went bezerk and I could no longer search through individual categories and now get a 404 error when I do! Okay enough of my rant hahaha. All that to say – I love them perrrrrty grahics too :).!

      Although I found this particular chart very useful, I too questioned a few of the findings. First and foremost Twitter of course. I honestly couldn’t believe that it wasn’t considered as a main source of traffic. Heck, I owe my most of my blog’s readers to Twitter.

      As for Digg and SU – I have accounts with both – but until very recently – I didn’t bother with them too much. Although I still don’t – I am making more of an effort as I know how beneficial they can be when it comes to traffic. I’m seeing more and more people coming my way via SU. Digg – not so much yet.

      Tumblr – Never used it. Don’t even know how really. I found it a bit confusing actually and much like you – I didn’t really see the benefits. But I may be mistaken as I don’t know much about it and have never given it the time of day.

      I actually thought of Quora when I came across this roadmap. But I figured it was still too new and wouldn’t appear until their update next year if it’s still going strong. Again – I have an account there but never made use of it. I joined to see what all the hype was about and got bored. Maybe I should take the time to go through it more thoroughly. You never know – as I’m sure there has to be something great about it. But the concept in itself and the engagement I came across (although I’m sorry to say I haven’t participated in any yet) is rather impressive.

      As you implied – Knowing which combo to use, how, for who and even when – is what will make or break your online campaign. Different methods work for different people – depending on their goals, their target audience, their strategy and so forth. But it was still interesting to compare last year’s landscape to this years and see how each tool has evolved or taken a step backwards.

      Thanks so much for your input here. I really appreciate it and it’s always nice to have you drop by.
      Enjoy the rest of your week.


  • Jk Allen

    HI Ingrid!

    Very informative for me, because unlike most – I’m pretty new to the Social Media landscape in general. It was our friend Mufasa that told me that I need to step my game in (in a very friendly manner of course) and get with the program. So, I’m Twitter so far – but still have some catching up to do.

    But let me admit that I see the light. I get it and I understand now. Being able to feel first what an impact its done for my traffic alone makes me a believer.

    You know what’s crazy, even though I don’t don’t have an FB account (yet) I get an equal amount of traffic from FB as I do from Twitter. It must be from “shares”.

    I haven’t spent much time with Social Bookmarking sites like Stumble Upon and Digg. I do have accounts and use them from time to time, but it seems like I’ve been more focussed on Twitter.

    Well, thanks for the inf Griddy! I’m sure this is good for the pros, but it’s really really good for the rookies like me!


    • Erica Allison

      JK, I find it incredibly hard to believe that you’re new to the SM landscape. You’re a natural! And oh my goodness…no FB account, yowza. Keep on doing what you’re doing – it rocks!

      • Ingrid Abboud

        I have to agree with you on both those counts Erica :)! JK certainly seems to know what he’s doing and it’s great that he’s learned the SM ropes so quickly. But I do think that an FB account or at least a page for his awesome Hustler blog would come in handy :).

    • Ingrid Abboud

      Hey JK,

      For someone who’s quite knew – I’d say you certainly know what you’re doing and how to conduct yourself – and then some!!! I find it hard to believe and I applaud you for what you do online and how you do it :).

      Our mutual mane friend lol has some great advice so I’d definitely mimic what he does or take what he says into consideration. He’s just amazing – all round!

      As for Twitter – I only started putting it to good use a few months ago as well – and boy am I glad that I did. The learning and meeting never stops! It’s truly a blast and beneficial in every which way.
      I owe a big part of my traffic and online friends to Twitter. No doubt about that!

      As for Digg and SU – much like you – I have accounts with them and I recently integrated the buttons here. Although I rarely use them – I know it’s a big mistake not to – so I am making an effort to take them into consideration as I am seeing the traffic pour in from SU. I also make the effort to SU people’s posts if and when I see a button similar to the one I have hear. I don’t really like to search for things so as long as they’re clearly visible and I like the post enough, then I’ll share the heck out of it lol.

      Glad you enjoyed this infographic. Rookie or not – I think it’s a good roadmap for folks to look at and understand. Regardless of whether we agree with the findings there. To each his own. What works for you make not work for another – something I like to keep in mind at times.

      Thanks so much for your rockin’ comment – as always :).
      Have a great week.


  • Joey Strawn

    Awesome stuff, Ingrid. I love the infographic you posted and am appreciative of your summary as well. I’m with you on being surprised that Twitter is left off as a traffic source. I can honestly say that almost everything that’s happened to me over the past 2 years has had a strong grounding in my audience and following on Twitter.

    Things change from year-to-year and it’s important to stay on top of things. It’s even more important to see where we’ve been and see what constants hold firm. Those are the areas and ideals that can really build a lasting business and community.


    • Ingrid Abboud

      Well hello there Oh great storyteller ;),

      I’m glad you liked this infographic Joey. As for the summary – I kept it really simple along with my observations in order not to end up with a 2000 word analysis lol.

      But yes – I was very surprised that Twitter wasn’t mentioned a s main traffic source. If I’m not mistaken – it wasn’t mentioned in last year’s infographic (this one is an update) either. Hmmm…

      Much like you – I owe Twitter a hell of lot! Whether its for promotion, connecting, readers…the list goes one. Not to mention the incredible friends (such as yourself) I’ve made because of it. As for traffic – as I said – it’s been my number 1 source so far and I expect it to remain that way for some time.

      You’re very right – the Social Media spectrum changes every year if not more so than that. It was interesting comparing last year’s chart to this years – whether I agree with everything or not. Knowing where we’re going and what tools to use to get there and attract our target audience is what will allow us to grow and build communities of loyal readers, customers, fans…

      Thanks so much for sharing your thoughts here Joey. Awesome of you to drop by. You might want to check out today’s Bring IT! post as I’m asking folks to leave their blog information and posting schedule so that I can produce a guide that people will be able to refer to. Would be great to list you in it.

      Have a good week.

  • Gabriele Maidecchi

    It’s good to see how a relatively niche service like StumbleUpon is getting so much exposure lately. After a generous round of funding, they say they have a lot more wonders ready in their arsenal, so I am kinda curious to see where this will lead. For example, their shortening service – tightly linked to the StumbleUpon’s philosophy – is already an excellent example of how to benefit both traffic and content quality.

    • Ingrid Abboud

      Hey Gabriele,

      I’ve been noticing more and more traffic coming to my site from SU and yet – I admit to rarely using it. Although now I do make an effort to Stumble a post if I see the person has that button available as I do on my floater.

      I wasn’t aware of their funding – thanks for letting me know. I too am curious now :).
      Hope you found this infographic useful in some way.


  • Gabriele Maidecchi

    It’s good to see how a relatively niche service like StumbleUpon is getting so much exposure lately. After a generous round of funding, they say they have a lot more wonders ready in their arsenal, so I am kinda curious to see where this will lead. For example, their shortening service – tightly linked to the StumbleUpon’s philosophy – is already an excellent example of how to benefit both traffic and content quality.

  • Fran Aslam

    How can you do so many post and each one better and longer than before. Where od you get all this energy from. I was getting tired looking at the post. Topic is elite, everyone loves it, information is great.
    The list of sites to read more is also great.

    The Social Landscape, infographic is very attractive. I did read it on the next page. Thanks
    Fran A

  • Fran Aslam

    How can you do so many post and each one better and longer than before. Where od you get all this energy from. I was getting tired looking at the post. Topic is elite, everyone loves it, information is great.
    The list of sites to read more is also great.

    The Social Landscape, infographic is very attractive. I did read it on the next page. Thanks
    Fran A

    • Ingrid Abboud

      Hey Fran,

      I’m glad you’re enjoying the articles you find here :).
      Oddly enough, the energy comes from a lack of sleep lol.

      Thanks for stopping by with your kind words.
      Have a great day.


  • John Falchetto

    Twitter not a source of traffic? Strange just like you Ingrid it is one of my top 3. Really strange. The problem with this, is once I see a hole in something I start to think, what are they talking about in the other boxes? What’s the deal with FB and bad for SEO? I’m no SEO expert but I use Google and I get FB pages as result to searches.

    I love the approach but I think like Howie says that they are expressing opinions rather than facts. Where is the data people?

    Ingrid love how you bring us all the latest infographics, I’m still amazed at how you find all these great things online.

    • Ingrid Abboud

      Hey John,

      Yeah, you can imagine my surprise when I realized that as well! I know that for a lot of people – Twitter is easily in their top 3 traffic sources – like you.

      All in all – I think the detail in this graphic is great – but it lacks numbers. Ans like I said – I think marketers can benefit from this and use it as a roadmap. But we often say, what works for you may not work for others. So although I would definitely rely on the information of each tool – I would take their good, okay and bad statuses with a small grain of salt – although I’m sure it’s as close and accurate as they could make it.

      It would have been nice to see some kind of data that could back up the the groups and the SM tools that are in them.

      As to how I find these – well – I’m a huge fan of infographics as you might know – and I have an entire category in this blog called infographics. Unfortunately, since my WP 3.1 upgrade (and I know you almost killed them too after your upgrade mishap) my categories can’t be linked to and accessed. So if you click on a category – you will get a 404 page or something else. Annoying!!

      Thanks so much for your thoughts on this one John. I appreciate it :).

      Have a great Tuesday.

  • Howie at Sky Pulse Media

    I love that you posted an infographic not data heavy knowing I can slice and dice things to show they are wrong! I like it!

    • Ingrid Abboud

      LOL Chief Alien,
      You’re right though – this one is a little light on precise data. I think they might have somehow figured out that I would post and that you would stop by and tear it apart so they kept it number-less hahaha.

      Glad you like it :).
      Cheers Howie