By Ogova Ondego
Published July 12, 2014
Though 3.8 million Kenyans use Facebook daily, more than half of registered users of LinkedIn and Twitter are dormant.
The State of Social Media in Kenya, a survey by Digital Rand that projects itself as a company that offers advanced tools to audit, manage, monitor and report one’s digital resources and online reputation, says that Twitter not only suffers a 65% dormancy rate in Kenya but that 19% of Kenyans on the 140-character tweet site haven’t used it in 2014. It says LinkedIn has the highest number of inactive users, closely followed by Google+.
The survey report released in Nairobi on June 30, 2014 says that 570 million tweets are expected by the end of 2014 and more than 50 000 new twitter accounts predicted at the same period of time.
That Facebook is the most popular social media in Kenya requires no research. That most users of social media are concentrated in the commercial and political capital, too, is self-evidend. And that LinkedIn (1.5 million users), Twitter (650 000 users) and Google+ (350 000 users) come far behind Facebook isn’t in dispute. Perhaps what could be new about the ranking are the numbers. But the survey doesn’t really present an accurate picture as underlying information is glossed over; for instance, the report doesn’t say that Google+ just joined the fray recently and that Google mail users are now registering for it.
The report says there is also a rise in the use of mobile applications which are starting to overtake web-based applications without, once again, providing an explanation for the trend. That the Twitter for Android app is the most popular feature with the social media network’s growth peaking between 2012 and 2013 could be attributed to the aggressive promotion of smart phones by mobile phone service provider Safaricom and handset suppliers like Samsung, Tecno and Nokia over the period of the survey. The Digital Rand would make its study authoritative if it provided possible explanation for any trend it identifies.
“Kenyans on Twitter cumulatively command a following of 120,199,588 followers and cumulatively follow 49,539,705 users,” the survey shows. “The average Kenyan follows 89 users and has 214 followers”.