Mary Meeker Kleiner Perkins Caufield and Byers

The Changing Face of Marketing: Mary Meeker’s Internet Trends Report

Gee RanasinhaMarketing

Every year Mary Meeker from Silicon Valley venture capital company Kleiner Perkins Caufield and Byers publishes a report about how the way internet use is evolving, and the opportunities our changing patterns of behavior present to marketers.

While much of the data can be picked up from reading a bunch of websites, it’s nice to see a report that consolidates data from various sources released over the past year into a single point of entry. While the report doesn’t offer any ground-breaking insights, it does a pretty good job of outlining in snapshot form how consumers are using the internet.

If you want to read the report for yourself – and I urge you to take the time to do so – then make your way over to the KPCB site. If you’re interested but too darn lazy and just want some of the key take-aways from the report, then keep reading.

The Changing Face Of Marketing

The report shows that Europe and/or North America are no longer the be-all and end-all of internet traffic.

Any guesses as to the country with the fastest growth in online users? China perhaps? Nope.
India, you say? Wrong again.

The answer? Iran, with 42m internet users – up 205% on a year earlier. Indonesia comes second, with 58% growth year-on-year.

top countries for internet traffic 2012
The USA shows up at Number 10 (understandable, since with 78% population penetration any grow percentages are bound to be marginal). No European country appears in the top 15. If you’re in Europe and looking for the country closest to home with the biggest opportunity, look at Turkey: 12m new internet users in the past four years.

Advertisers Are Wasting Their Money

More and more people are spending time on their mobile devices – tablets and smartphones – rather than on their PCs and laptops. Today 15% of all internet traffic is from mobile devices – up from just 1% in 2009 – and by next year is forecast to hit 25%.

Advertisers are wasting their money
People are abandoning desktop and laptop PCs in favor of smartphones and – especially – tablets. For example over the same period after launch, iPad sales grew THREE TIMES faster than the iPhone did. One reason why you probably need to redesign your website.

OK, so we get it that mobile is where it’s at. So why are advertisers still throwing their money in the wrong direction? Mobile devices get only 3% of advertising spend, despite accounting for 12% of media comsumption time. In contrast our love affair with print media is plummeting – down to just 6% – yet printed materials take 23% ad share.

The Internet is Visual – Now More Than Ever

Broadband landline and cellular internet connections have seen an explosion in us sharing content, especially images and video. The amount of global digital content created and then shared has grown nine-fold in just five years to nearly 2 zettabytes. How big’s 2 zettabytes? That’s two trillion gigabytes.

dropcam website
Over half a billion images are shared across the internet every day – mostly on Facebook – an increase of 100% in just two years. 4 billion hours of video are watched every month on YouTube. Wi-fi monitoring camera manufacturer Dropcam only launched in 2009, yet has already surpassed YouTube in terms of how much new video is uploaded to their site per minute.

Business Rules and Processes Are Evolving

In the old days if you had a business idea and needed funding you went to a bank, or maybe to a venture capital company. Today more and more startups are using sites such as Kickstarter to raise funds via crowd-funding.

There’s a bunch of innovators out there who are changing certain business processes that, until recently, we all thought were pretty much unchangeable. Think how companies like Airbnb have changed the hotel business, how Uber reinvented how we thought of taxis, or how 3D printing is changing…well…pretty much everything.

Social Continues To Grow, But In New Channels

Consumer use of social media channels continues to grow, with networks such as Google+, Tumblr, Instagram and Pinterest showing sharp rises. Facebook shows a small decline, but that will probably reverse once we start seeing more development in what they’re doing regarding Facebook on mobile devices.

Most popular social media networks 2012/13
Interestingly Google+ is showing as nipping at the heels of Twitter. I’ve mentioned before how important I believe it is for your business to have an optimized presence on Google+, outside of simply customer engagement. If there’s one thing you take from this, please get your Google+ page(s) sorted ASAP.

What’s a Business To Do?

The way that we consume, interact, and share information and content continues to change, as our media consumption tools evolve at an even faster rate. The challenge for marketers and business owners is to overlay such trends data in the context of their own value message and customer buying experience. The goal is to (continue to) deliver useful and meaningful communications touchpoints that help to maintain an organization’s relevance in the minds of their customers.

Are you up to the challenge?

About the Author
Avatar for Gee Ranasinha

Gee Ranasinha

Gee Ranasinha is CEO and founder of KEXINO. He's been a marketer since the days of 56K modems, lectures on marketing and behavioral economics at two European business schools, and was noted as one of the top 100 global business influencers by (those wonderful people who make financial software).

Originally from London, today Gee lives in a world of his own in Strasbourg, France, tolerated by his wife and teenage son.

Find out more about Gee at Follow him on X/Twitter at KEXINO, on Facebook at, or on LinkedIn at


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