Things That Happen In Social Media In 2 Hours

January 6, 2011 - 23 Comments

I was traveling last week. I decided to order a shuttle service for the one-hour trip from San Jose to the San Francisco International Airport. Last week, however, the trip took 2 hours. Our super helpful driver tried his best to speed up our travel time by taking a different route and changing freeways – but with not much success.

As I was looking out the window admiring the long parking lot on the freeway (insert sarcasm here), my mind started wondering: “I wonder what’s going on out there while I’m sitting in here”.  Fueled by curiosity, I later jumped on the Internet to do some research and got my calculator out. Here is some fascinating information on what 2 hours means in the world of social media and web 2.0.


The moral of the story? If you are using social media for business,

  1. Your updates, uploads and tweets will need to really stand out to be heard and seen.
  2. Your tags need to be intuitive to web users. You need to tag your content using THEIR language to help them quickly discover and locate it.
  3. Keeping an eye on what people are saying about you is a must. Information on the web spreads faster and to more people than ever before. 


Many thanks to Dennis Mancini (@snapini) of Cisco for the cool visual.


All calculations have been rounded, averaged and/or estimated based on publicly available information and don’t take into account the number of people that generated those tweets, video uploads, etc. These data points are to be used for fun rather than as an aid in decision making.

Information Sources:


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  1. Thanks for posting this, Petra and thanks to @snapini for creating it. I just joined this group, having managed social media products and a large online community, with moderating team, for years and already I get this great visual that hits home the competition for social media eyeballs. I’m happy!

  2. Nice color choice on the blog. It is really easy on my eyes and I have bad eyes too so that’s a really big compliment lol

  3. Great article! Thanks for sharing.

  4. Social media sometimes is better than SEO, we can get instant traffic without confusing SEO strategy.

  5. Social media owns. You can’t do marketing nowadays without it.

  6. Social media can be seen in both lights as there is always a polar opposite to everything. It does have its advantages in the marketing community, but again, as said earlier in another comment – “what’s the point” There is a point but again, going back to the original blog posting, you have to make it stand out there with everything that is going on. You have to find that right balance for you, your life, your career, and what you need for all of them!

  7. Wow, what a creative way to show what happens online in only 2 hours. The 242 million searches via google is astounding. With so much to choose from, I agree that any social marketing really needs to stand out.

  8. It’s hard to imagine what life was like before the age of instantaneous communications, updating and sharing your life story online. How did the world or business get by when updates had to be processed overnight or on the weekends? Imagine digging for change and looking for a filthy phone booth to make a call. What would life be like if text messages required a stamp and 3 to 5 days to get there?

    Now the challenge is for the baby-boomers to understand, embrace and master the social media/networking opportunities.

    Great points and thanks for sharing! Made my day.

  9. Thanks so much for this resource. I need a miracle!! This could be the one.

  10. Social media is a really great way to boost marketing for business.

  11. This reminds me of Business at the speed of thoughts by Bill Gates.

  12. Social media is very important now a days to boost marketing efforts, fantastic work done.

  13. Great Post! My three year old daughter was proficiently navigating her way through my iPhone whilst listening to the radio I had left on in the background. She asked, “Daddy, can the man on the radio hear what I say?”.
    I told her, “No, he talks and we just listen.”
    And she replied, “What’s the point of that?”
    And therein lies the heart of social media.

  14. Lovely visual which closely aligns to my infamous counter 🙂 and it’s sources – spotted this as I was tagged in Facebook version of the image?! Good job folks…

  15. The money exchange question has come up a few times, thanks for that. I wish we could find more information on that topic.

  16. I wonder how many of these exchanges and / or FB messages, Twitter, etc. actually carry money is exchanged or offered added value services. Your point about stress among all the noise is white there. His work is so over. Thanks

  17. This graphic makes me wonder about all the unrecorded transactions and dealings in that same amount of time. If one were to have a complete feed on the human race it would make these numbers seem minuscule I’m sure. There is still something very magical about symbols, and writing, and pictures that are recorded. Are we any closer to having the map equal the territory?

  18. A few weeks ago I went to see the opening of Tron. Back in the day I remember how the anticipation of seeing a great Movie would strike up a ton of conversation before the Movie actually started. That seems to not be the case anymore. As I looked around the Theatre I saw at least 100 Smartphones and I’m guessing half were on Facebook and the other half on YouTube. That’s not an exaggeration. I heard the Trailer of Tron at least 10 times. People are staying connected on unprecedented levels. Oh and It would have been 101 but my Phone was dead. :p

  19. Wow. Nice. So, average usage of FB in 2 hours is 5 Million vs. 246M Google searches. Someday we will look back and see this relationship as reversed? Hmmm 😉

  20. Good tips and a most interesting set of suggestions on the importance of keeping up to date and aware of what others are saying about you via social networks. I wonder how many of these exchanges and/or posts via FB, Twitter, etc. actually lead to money being exchanged or value added services being offered. Your point about standing out from all the white noise is spot on. Your illustration above is one such way. Thanks.

  21. Its really surprising to see that Google is still inactive in this social media competition!

    God knows what happened to them! May be they are taking a deep winter hibernation!

  22. Social media is a great way to boost marketing efforts. Excellent Post!