May 7, 2018
New studies reveal never-before-seen trends in social media
Research into changing trends in social media is nearly as old as social media itself. Two new studies, however, reveal never-before-seen shifts in user habits that hint at changing realities for social media marketers.
Last month saw the release of the 2018 Pew Research Center’s study of social media use, the latest in an annual series, and The Infinite Dial, a well-established study of consumer behavior in the digital space published each year by Edison Research and Triton Digital. Perhaps the most interesting finding was that collective use of three major platforms—Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter–is down overall among individuals age 12 and older–from 80 percent in 2017 to 77 percent today. The primary cause is a downturn in Facebook use. At a time when the platform is making headlines for all the wrong reasons, 62 percent of individuals 12 and older say they use Facebook, a drop of five percentage points from 2017. Among younger consumers, the news gets even worse for Facebook, with usage dropping 12 points, from 79 percent to 67 percent. While Facebook is still the only conventional social media platform to reach a majority of Americans 12 and older, it is showing signs of decreasing influence–likely resulting in part from declining trust in Facebook and other social media sites. According to the Pew Center, more than half (51%) of us do not trust social media companies when it comes to protecting our data.