Facebook is not just for Baby Boomers
Facebook has gone through many iterations in its lifetime–from its insular origins as a college student site to the Metaverse. Despite its various changes, it has remained one of the most dominant websites globally.
As times change, so do demographics. Since Facebook is generally more representative of the U.S. population as a whole, changes observed on the site can shed light into how people are gathering, interpreting, and sharing information. According to Pew Research, approximately 70% of U.S. adults are on Facebook, whereas 40% are on Instagram, 25% on Snapchat, 23% on Twitter, and 21% are on TikTok.
At CN4 Partners, we strive to keep up with the ever expanding landscape of the digital world. Social media is an increasingly integral campaign tool. If used well and depending on your goals, it can greatly elevate your campaign.
Younger people are much more active than assumed.
Contrary to popular belief, Baby Boomers, the generation of approximately 56 to 76 year olds, are not the most active users on Facebook. The platform has seen an uptick in Millennial users, the generation approximately of 25 to 42 year olds, which now makes them the most dominant generation on the site. Even as they’re active on other sites like Instagram and Twitter, Facebook is still their number one used platform.
Gen Z or “Zoomers,” people ages 12 to 25 approximately, are less thrilled about Facebook compared to all generations. In 2022, 35% of teens in the US were on Facebook, a decline from 71% in 2014-15. A recent survey conducted also revealed 25% of the Zoomers interviewed said they want to decrease their use of Facebook in 2023, and seven percent said they will completely leave the site. Gen Z’s departure won’t kneel the internet giant, but it does shed light on how to best reach younger people. Zoomers are using other Meta products like Instagram, and are loving Snapchat and TikTok.
Gen X, people ages 43 to 58, are already a relatively small generation in the US, but 90 percent of them that use social media are on Facebook. Social media users from this generation are more likely than others to stick to what they know and not use newer platforms. Less than half Gen X social media users are on Instagram, and even less on Twitter and Snapchat.
Getting concrete numbers on gender is hard. More and more internet users in general are identifying as non-binary, but Facebook has not kept much data on these users. For the purpose of our report, we’re working with the binary categorization of gender.
Women in the US overrepresent men on Facebook, 54.3 to 47.7, though there has been a slight decline in active women users; in 2018, 56% of active users identified as women, whereas 44% of active users identified as men. Within some age ranges and groups, men may overrepresent women; for instance, in a recent survey asking about social media preference, men 25-35 years old in the US reported Facebook as their favorite platform, while women in that age group reported Instagram as their favorite. This presents a unique opportunity to target Millennial men, and considering the integration of Instagram on Facebook, women too.
Level of income can correlate with what social media platform is used
Many have noticed a correlation between income and voting turnout; the higher the income, the more likely they are to vote. Or more importantly, the higher the income, the less barriers to voting occur.
Facebook started as a college site, and in a way it has retained that spirit. Reportedly, 73% of college-educated US-based Internet users, and 70% of people earning more than $75k a year, are on Facebook regularly. Probably due to its ubiquitous presence on the internet, members from other socioeconomic demographic areas are also represented at around 70%. On other social media sites, there’s more divergence between socioeconomic status and active users.
For instance, 47% of people making more than $75K a year are on Instagram, compared to 39% of people making $50K-$74,999. The divide and percentage of users in different demographics is even starker with Twitter. 34% of $75K yearly wage earners are on Twitter, whereas 22% of $50K-$74,999 yearly wage earners are on the site.
Everyone’s on Facebook–you should be too, then.
Without a doubt, Facebook is still the main star of the internet. Despite the proliferation of other social media platforms gaining popularity and its decline in active users, Facebook has remained powerful. Its adaptability to the changing internet and media landscape has extended its life.
If your campaign is not on Facebook, you’re missing out on reaching voters where they are. There’s an even split of Democrats and Republicans on Facebook, meaning multiple opportunities to sway voters. Curious about how to integrate Facebook into your campaign? Reach out to us.