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Twitter Driving Most Online Conversations About Fortune Global 100 Brands

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On average, the companies listed on the Fortune Global 100, an index of the largest corporations in the US, Europe, Asia-Pacific, and Latin America, generate a total of 10,400,132 online mentions per month, mostly via Twitter, according to a report by Burson-Marsteller and Visible Technologies.

During February 2012 (the four-week study period*) each of the Fortune Global 100 companies was mentioned an average of 55,970 times on Twitter. Online forums and blogs also offered social engagement opportunities for the leading global brands, but at far lower levels, generating an average of 19,739 and 19,610 mentions during the month, respectively: 

Below, additional findings from the 2012 Burson-Marsteller Global Social Media Check-Up, which examines the social media activity among the Fortune Global 100, including brands such as Ford, Sony, AT&T, Honda, and Walmart.

Followers Numbers on the Rise


The average number of followers per corporate Twitter account nearly tripled in the previous year, from 5,076 in 2011, to 14,709 in 2012.

Similarly, the average number of accounts each Global company follows increased 182%, from 1,860 in 2011, to 2062 in 2012.

Twitter Most Popular Social Channel

Overall, most (87%) Fortune Global 100 companies are using at least one of the major social platforms to communicate with online stakeholders. And by far, the biggest bump in corporate social media adoption over the past year has occured on YouTube.

Even so, Twitter is now the most widely adopted social channel among the Fortune Global 100 companies:

  • 82% have at least one Twitter account, up from 77% that did so in 2011.
  • 79% use YouTube, up from 57% a year earlier.
  • 74% use Facebook, up from 61% in 2011.

Nearly one-half (48%) of the Fortune Global 100 have an account on Google+.

Multiple Social Accounts

Multiple accounts on social media platforms (which give companies the ability to target audiences by geography, topic, and service) are also on the rise.

On average, Fortune Global 100 organizations have an average of 10.1 Twitter accounts, 10.4 Facebook Pages, 8.1 YouTube channels, 2.6 Google+ pages, and 2.0 Pinterest accounts:

Other key findings:

  • Video content creation is up: The number of Fortune Global 100 companies with a branded YouTube channel grew 39% over the past year.
  • Engagement is becoming second nature to companies: 79% of corporate accounts on Twitter attempt to engage with other users by retweeting and using @mentions.
  • Stakeholders are following global companies closely: Since 2010, the average number of Facebook likes per company page has increased 275%, to 152,646 likes in 2012.
  • 93% of corporate Facebook pages are updated weekly.

*Data was collected in February 2012; however, Pinterest data was collected in July 2012.

About the study: Findings are based on the Fortune Global 100 companies social media activity on Twitter, Facebook, YouTube, and Google Plus gathered in February 2012, and on Pinterest, gathered in July 2012. Sample size for countries/regions: US: 29 companies; Europe: 45 companies; Asia-Pacific: 23 companies; and Latin America: 3 companies. Comparisons were made to Burson-Marsteller's first Fortune Global 100 Social Media Study, The Global Social Media Check-up 2010, published on February 23, 2010, and The Second Annual Global Social Media Check-up, published on February 15, 2011. Data was collected by Burson-Marsteller's global research team. Visible Technologies also provided new data on how much consumers and other stakeholders discuss companies online.


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