Sahail Ashraf posted on 7 May 2021
The Pew social media report is out, and it shows some interesting insights. Facebook is still popular, but young people seem to be sticking with certain platforms.
The last twelve months have been very challenging in many different ways, but one area that has seen consistent growth online is social media. People needed to connect more and communicate while they were in quarantine, and social media helped meet that need.
Pew Research has released it’s 2021 social media usage survey, and it offers some intriguing insights into how social media is shaping up. For marketers there is plenty to chew over.
It really is. The report shows that these two sites continue to dominate among users. We do have to say that the Pew report is based on US returns, but it still shows a clear picture of these two platforms truly being part of people’s lives.
The report says that 69% of adults ‘ever use’ Facebook. That’s a phenomenally huge amount when you consider this is a social media platform that has been around (as in available to the public) since 2006. It just keeps going.
The nature of Facebook is what keeps it top of mind for so many people. It is literally the most effective (or at least the most established) tool for keeping in touch with people.This doesn’t just mean messaging. It means being reminded about birthdays, seeing photos that mean something to you, and generally having distant people remain part of your life. On top of all of that, it is also a genuine habit for people. Every day, people ‘check in’ to Facebook. When you’re doing something as regularly as brushing your teeth, it doesn’t leave your life that easily.
This data doesn’t talk about how long people spend on Facebook, but the research does show that 70% of Facebook users visit the site ‘several’ times daily. That’s more than Instagram, it’s nearest rival (even though Facebook owns Instagram), which sees 45% of it’s users on it several times a day.
What’s interesting is that YouTube has a bigger chunk of the attention pool, with 81% of US adults saying they ‘ever use’ it. That has risen by 8% since 2019, which shows that YouTube is genuinely growing in popularity. Facebook has stayed the same since 2019 (the last study was in 2019).
Yes,we have mentioned Reddit before. Let’s not get too excited, it isn’t blowing up the world with user numbers just yet. But like YouTube, it too saw growth in 2019. It pulled in 7% growth in the US and is now up to 18% of people ‘ever using’ it.
Reddit has some way to go, obviously. But it is growing. And as time goes on, expect it to boost its user base. Meanwhile, it has to pull away from the image it has, which is generally that of a group of communities, some of them quite toxic.
LinkedIn is growing still, and it is changing quite significantly. The report shed some light on the user base, which should help brands that are focused on gaining traction on the platform:
Those with higher levels of education are again more likely than those with lower levels of educational attainment to report being LinkedIn users. Roughly half of adults who have a bachelor’s or advanced degree (51%) say they use LinkedIn, compared with smaller shares of those with some college experience (28%) and those with a high school diploma or less (10%).
This is all about demographics, but knowing the audience always helps when planning campaigns. For example, check out what the report says about Instagram, Snapchat and TikTok:
Majorities of 18- to 29-year-olds say they use Instagram or Snapchat and about half say they use TikTok, with those on the younger end of this cohort – ages 18 to 24 – being especially likely to report using Instagram (76%), Snapchat (75%) or TikTok (55%).1 These shares stand in stark contrast to those in older age groups. For instance, while 65% of adults ages 18 to 29 say they use Snapchat, just 2% of those 65 and older report using the app – a difference of 63 percentage points.
If you’re looking at these demographics, you know what to do.
The Pew Report surveyed 1,502 US citizens about their social media habits,and you can see the full report here.
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