Rick Bruner, who contributed to the study, posts the following on Business Blog Consulting:
Just to get bloggers all wet, we actually produce a list of the top 25 blogs in the (English-language) blogosphere, by unique quarterly visitors (Q1 2005) and by number of visitations (i.e., user loyalty). It's sure to generate controversy, as the top bloggers by traffic and visitation are not necessarily the ones that show up at the top of everyone else's lists by number of in-bound links (or at least they're not in the same order), but that's just a question of understanding comScore's methodology: actually tracking of hundreds of thousands of blog readers and making statistically sound projections accordingly.
Perhaps the more important findings, however, will be those about the size and demographic and behavioral make-up of blog readers. Highlights include:
- 50 million U.S. Internet users visited blog sites in the first quarter of 2005. That is roughly 30% of all U.S. Internet users and 1 in 6 of the total U.S. population
- Five hosting services for blogs each had more than 5 million unique visitors in that period, and four individual blogs had more than 1 million visitors each
- Of 400 of the biggest blogs observed, segmented by seven (nonexclusive) categories, political blogs were the most popular, followed by "hipster" lifestyle blogs, tech blogs and blogs authored by women
- Compared to the average Internet user, blog readers are significantly more likely to live in wealthier households, be younger and connect to the Web on high-speed connections
- Blog readers also visit nearly twice as many web pages as the Internet average, and they are much more likely to shop online
MarketingVox picked up on the last bullet point, noting that there is an audience for marketers in the blogosphere. I might add that it will be a tricky audience - and a tricky group of publishers - but heck, that's never stopped us marketers before, has it?
Here's a link to the study. Can't wait to read the whole thing myself!