The amount of time spent on social media sites has nearly doubled from around 800,000 hours per month in August 2008 to 1.6 million hours per month in June 2009.
Online measurement company Nielsen has found time spent on social media sites was just behind entertainment, which had just over 1.6 million hours per month.
The number of Australians accessing social media sites has continued to grow in the past year, with Facebook’s unique audience surpassing eight million for the first time in August 2009.
Twitter was up 979% to 1.5 million in August 2009.
Mark Higginson, director of analytics at Nielsen, said the company has seen a growing focus by agencies on measuring and understanding what consumers are saying online about their clients.
“Previously, most social media monitoring was undertaken only in the case of a crisis or to monitor specific campaigns. However, as the power of social media continues to increase, agencies as well as brand managers are seeing the value in gaining an ongoing barometer of what consumers are saying to each other online,” Higginson said.
Nielsen is currently preparing its Social Media and Internet & Technology Reports, which detail social media usage trends, available from early 2010.