Russian Social Media – Becoming the Grown-ups: Part 1


The growth of communications in Russian digital space is ahead of the boldest predictions. A huge number of companies have  already realized the potential of the rapidly growing Social Media phenomenon. Other companies in Russia are only just getting acquainted with it but already have an idea ​​of the positive effect its application can have on business growth and spread rates.

The Russian market is still fairly young in this industry, but unique social platforms such as VKontakte and Odnoklassniki are already there. These were created to enable Russian inhabitants to have a dialogue with each other, but we are increasingly seeing it used for more commercial purposes. A statement in one of the articles (posted in Russian) in says: “The growth of social networking is a global cultural phenomenon” This accurately describes the modern trend. Even seven years ago the concept of social media was mainly talked about in in the realm of digital experts, and even then there was little understanding of the kind of potential  this industry could bring.


According to this study by Global Web Index in 2011, the number of active social network users in Russia are as follows:

On a Worldwide scale, Russia was looking the following way (also refer to global social network penetration diagram)

As is evident from the following diagrams, Russia ranked 5th with 26.06 million active users, just behind countries such as China, USA, India and Brazil. Penetration of social networks in the Russian market is about 65%, more than 10% above average – which is a very positive and fast-paced trend.

The same company conducted a similar study in 2009, with a slightly different format but the same focus. Here are the findings for Russia:

Analysing these figures we can say with certainty that the number of active users in Russia has increased markedly.

With the continuing growth of active users, social media share is increasing in both personal and business respects. Digital trends in the global market space rush forward with incredible speed and a growing number of companies in Russia are now using social media tools as major components of their marketing and advertising campaigns.


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