The UK Leads Europe In Social Networking

    May 2, 2008

Close to half of all people in the UK will be members of a social networking site within four years, a new report indicates.

The study found that the UK has the highest number of users in Europe who are members of sites such as MySpace and Facebook. At least 9.6 million people in the UK use these sites and that is expected to increase to 27.1 million by 2012.

The report by Datamonitor, an independent market analyst, predicts that the UK will see healthy growth in numbers in Europe over the next five years. The growth is not only being driven by the young, but increasingly, older people are showing interest in social networking.

According to Datamonitor UK users are quick to embrace new technology and the growth in social networks is also attributed to the fact that when they launched they were only available in English.

"A lot of it is down to the English language," said Matthew Taylor, a consumer markets analyst at Datamonitor who wrote the report. "Myspace and Facebook started in English and that’s played a big part in it."

France had the second highest number of social networking users with 8.9 m million, which is expected to increase to 21.3 million by 2012. Germany was third with 8.6 million and is predicted to hit 21.7 million by 2012.

Overall in Europe social networking is expected to more than double from 41.7 million users to 107.4 million, making them an even more valuable marketing tool for advertisers.