Social Media Is Ubiquitous, Younger Demos More Active On Instagram, Snapchat

Digital content producers should be heartened by a study released Wednesday by Pew Research Center: It shows that 72% of all Americans have used social-media sites, a figure that has remained stable for five years. 

YouTube is the top social platform, utilized by 81% of consumers, up from 73% in 2019. Facebook, despite a wave of bad publicity, is next, chosen by 69%. In fact, 49% visit Facebook several times a day and 22% once per day, making it the leader in daily usage.

In contrast, Instagram is used by 40% overall, and Pinterest and LinkedIn by roughly 30% apiece. Snapchat claims 25% usage, and similar percentages use Twitter or WhatsApp. 

The big determinate is age.

Instagram is utilized by 71% of young adults and Snapshot by 65%. In addition, 48% in that cohort use TikTok. 

Drilling town to the 18-to-24 demo, 76% use Instagram, 75% Snapchat and 55% TikTok. But only 2% of consumers age 65 and older use Snapchat. 



YouTube is used by 95% of adults age 18 to 29 and 91% by those in the 50-64 group. But only 49% of those age 65 and older use it. 

Preferences also vary by race and ethnicity. For instance, 46% of Hispanic Americans use WhatsApp, versus 23% of Black Americans and 16% of Whites. 

In addition, 52% of Hispanics and 49% of Black Americans use Instagram, compared with 35% of White Americans. 

LinkedIn is more widely used by people with higher education, including 51% with bachelor’s or advanced degrees. But only 28% of those with some college and 10% of those with high-school diplomas or less. 

Separately, Reddit is now used by 18% overall, compared to 11% in 2019, making it the only site besides YouTube to post significant growth in that period. 

Pew surveyed 1,502 U.S. consumers from Jan. 25 to Feb. 8. 

2 comments about "Social Media Is Ubiquitous, Younger Demos More Active On Instagram, Snapchat".
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  1. John Grono from GAP Research, April 8, 2021 at 8:55 p.m.

    Ray, do you know what the question that Per asks to determine "that 72% of all Americans have used social-media sites"?

    If it is the all too communly worded "have you ever used...", then reporting it as being stable for five years is hardly surprising because once you "use" you can't "un-use".   In effect it is saying there is no real growth in social media.

  2. Ed Papazian from Media Dynamics Inc, April 9, 2021 at 8:06 a.m.

    John, the question was posed as have you ever used this site---which makes the results rather misleading. However, they also asked those who answered "yes" for each  site, about daily use and got considerable variations between sites---which goes to frequency and, I assume, the percieved value of each site to the user.

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