Mary Meeker’s Annual Tech Report Outlines Coming Shifts in Social Media and Digital Marketing

Every year, the tech sector keenly awaits Mary Meeker’s annual Internet Trends Report[1], which looks at the key industry shifts and developments to be aware of, in order to help marketers, and others, plan for the next major evolutions.

Meeker, a venture capitalist, and a former partner at Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers[2], has been heavily involved in the tech industry since the early 80’s, giving her significant insight, and oversight, into the development of the web and its subsequent offshoots.

This year, Meeker’s full report[3] is a whopping 333 slides, but here’s an overview of some of the key social media and digital marketing-related elements highlighted in this latest update.

First off, Meeker looks at the growth of internet adoption, which is slowing as regions work on new infrastructure to facilitate connection. It’s amazing to consider that around 50% of the world is still not connected to the internet, which highlights the opportunities for expansion, but also, the challenges now faced in getting the rest of the world online.

And if you were wondering why social apps like LinkedIn[4] and Facebook[5] are now increasingly keen to launch features that will appeal to Indian users, this may provide some context.

China remains largely walled off to outside operators, but India now not only has more users than the US, but far more opportunity for expansion to the next billion users. Similar opportunities also exist in the Asia Pacific region – next time you see a new feature being launched in another nation, this context may help you make sense of such.

Meeker also notes the increase in mobile device usage, which was also recently highlighted in a new report from eMarketer[6].

Interesting to note that, while mobile usage is growing, desktop usage is not declining at a rapid rate, while the growth in ‘connected device’ usage has ramped up significantly in the past couple of years.

In terms of social platforms specifically, Meeker highlights the rising usage of YouTube and Instagram, while most others remain relatively flat – with Facebook even seeing a decline.

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