Trying to figure out — and stay up with — what’s going on with social networks requires some dedication, and keeping your ear to the streets. If you’ve been paying attention, then you’ve probably noticed a shift in the conversation. Previously, the dialogue was fixated on growing Fans, Followers, and building a creative presence on social sites. Now, the dialogue has shifted into a conversation about driving real engagement and measurable business value.

The first generation involved the important transformation in the way people interact. People connected in a whole different way, building networks all around the web and participating like never before. People didn’t have to be reliant on their immediate friend group anymore. They were able to find people around the world who shared the same interests, and connect in meaningful ways with those individuals.

Now, the second generation looks to understand who those Fans, Followers, and Friends really are. There have been four unique market segments identified that are most likely to look to customer communities when making purchasing decisions: Fashionista Professionals, Knights with Shiny Macs, Web-Building Techies, and Bargain-Hunting Mamas. See the stats below, and read up on why each segment matters in consumer communities.

via: Get Satisfaction