There is a growing number of people who are deciding to stay away from Facebook. What are their mean reasons and how should we adapt our marketing strategies while targeting them?
There are more than 2 billion monthly active users on Facebook. It is still the most popular social media platform but not everyone is using the platform as much as before. Organic reach is becoming harder but at the same time, it’s also more challenging to find your target audience on Facebook.
There seems to be a trend of people spending less time on Facebook over the last couple of years. This is an important change that we need to be aware of when planning our marketing strategy for the next 12 months.
Edison Research and Trinity Digital have released their latest Infinite Dial study offering useful insights on the changing habits of people using social media.
Despite Facebook’s domination in the social media landscape, there seems to be a drop in the channel’s usage compared to the previous users. More specifically, Facebook usage among Americans declined from 67% to 61%. This means that 15 million users have stopped using the platform over the last 2 years.
The biggest drop seems to take place in the people aged 12-34 years old falling from 79% to 62%. Meanwhile, there has been an increase in Facebook users aged 55+ moving from 49% to 53%.
Looking at the younger demographics and their use of Facebook, there has been a big drop in their usage of the popular social media platform. Back in 2017, 79% of Americans aged 12-34 were using Facebook. The updated stats see the percentage falling at 62% of people using Facebook.
This means that there are currently 65 million Americans aged 12-34 who use Facebook. There is a loss of 17 million people in the younger demographics that don’t seem to use Facebook anymore.
Except for Facebook, it’s also interesting to look at how younger demographics use other social media platforms. Instagram is the social media app with the best (positive) change. 64% of Americans aged 12-34 used Instagram in 2017 and this percentage has now increased to 66% of them. Overall, there doesn’t seem to be one platform that gained the people who abandoned Facebook.
Facebook is still the social media app that Americans use more often. However, there is a significant drop in the number of people who picked Facebook as their most frequently used app falling from 65% to 52%. This means that Facebook is still popular but it’s losing ground compared to similar demographics back in 2017.
A closer look at the younger demographics and their habits indicates an even more interesting story. Although Facebook used to be the first option for people aged 12-34 back in 2017 with 58%, its percentage has now plummeted to just 29%. Meanwhile, Snapchat is following with 28% of the respondents using it more often than the other apps. Instagram is also following closely with 26% of the younger demographics considering it as their most frequently used social media app. These stats indicate that younger people are now splitting their time between different apps with Facebook constantly losing ground.
We’ve already mentioned the rise of Instagram for brands and the popularity of Snapchat among younger people before. Now, these stats bring out an additional confirmation of how younger Americans use social media platforms.
The next big question is, why do they stop using Facebook?
It’s not enough to know that a growing number of people is spending less time on Facebook. What’s more important is to understand the reasons behind their decision.
According to The Social Habit, these are the main reasons that people stop using Facebook:
Thus, the main reasons have to do with the content in the platform, the negativity and the privacy.
When it comes to specific groups of people, the older demographics seem to focus more on rants and privacy concerns. Younger Americans aged 13-34 seem to have a way higher percentage in the preference of other sites although they still seem to agree with the other responses.
In addition to these, women are more prone to taking a break from Facebook due to the negativity that is on the platform.
All these findings can be very helpful for marketers who try to plan their strategy on the right social media channels to reach their target audience.
It’s important to pay attention to the changing trends in online habits for different demographics. For example, if you want to run a social campaign targeting young adults, you might want to focus on Instagram and Snapchat.
However, if your next campaign is focusing on elder demographics, then Facebook can be a great channel to start with.
It is still useful to remember that the trends shouldn’t end up in generalizations that can ruin your campaign. Not all young users prefer Instagram over Facebook. Not all older people have no idea how to use Snapchat.
Your strategy should start from your current metrics and personas for each channel to ensure that you are listening to what your customers expect from you and how these findings are matching the latest online trends.
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