Time spent on social networking and blogging sites accounted for 17 percent of all time spent on the internet in August, nearly triple the percentage of time spent on the sector a year ago, according to a report from The Nielsen Co.
Perhaps even more significant, year-over-year estimated online advertising spend on the top social networking and blogging sites increased 119 percent, from $49 million in August 2008 to $108 million this past August.
The share of estimated total online ad spend on these sites also grew from a 7 percent share in August 2008 to a 15 percent share in August 2009, according to Nielsen, a New York-based information and media company.
While some industries decreased their overall online ad spends year-over-year in August, all industries across the board increased spending on leading social networking sites. The entertainment industry, for example, increased ad spending on the top social networking sites by 812 percent in August. Travel advertisers followed suit, increasing their ad spends on these sites by 364 percent.
The growth of social networking sites has been fueled in part by the explosive growth of Facebook, Nielsen said in its report, as many industries head to Facebook when planning their online ad dollars. In August, Facebook was the leading social networking site, advertised on by 10 of the 13 industries when ranked by display ad impressions, while MySpace led in the other industries.