And the topic of conversation today is…? ‘Conversation’ – with Forrester and Hubspot releasing new research.

Forrester have released an update to their Social Technographics Ladder (a way of understanding and categorising different social media behaviours) that includes a new category: ‘Conversationalists’.

They explain this introduction to their model as follows:

Conversationalists reflects two changes. First, it includes not just Twitter members, but also people who update social network status to converse (since this activity in Facebook is actually more prevalent than tweeting). And second, we include only people who update at least weekly, since anything less than this isn’t much of a conversation.

At the moment the data on Conversationalists is for the US only, but it will surely only be a matter of time before this data is available for more countries and is included in their Groundswell Tool.

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Hubspot have also been busy, releasing their “State of the Twittersphere Report” (PDF), summarised here by TechCrunch.

Hubspot’s analysis is based on over 5 million user accounts that have been registered on their Twitter Grader tool and over 6 million tweets.

Highlights of the report include:

  • User growth has declined – from a high of 13% in March of 2009 to 3.5% in October 2009
  • The average user is following more people, followed by more people and has posted more updates – ie. the user base is maturing.
  • 40% of the top 20 Twitter locations in January 2010 are outside North America (with 65% of Twitter members stating their location in their profile)
  • London is the top self-reported Twitter location followed by Brazil with the US in third

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