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How do Gender, Ethnicity, and Income impact Social Media Use among Teens?

Are Teens your target audience? With their high use of social media … do you know which platforms to connect with them on?

According to a PEW Research study (Aug'22), the social media habits of American teens ages 13-17 are constantly evolving, requiring brands to stay up to date.

📲 They surveyed teens on their use of 10 different platforms.

Here's what they found:

  • YouTube reigns supreme: 95% of teens used the site or app at least once.

  • TikTok, Instagram, and Snapchat have widespread adoption, with 67%, 62%, and 59% of teens using them respectively.

  • Facebook use has declined significantly with only 32% of teens saying they use vs 71% in 2014-15.

  • Twitter (23% vs. 33% in 2014-15) and Tumblr (5% vs. 14% in 2014-15) also decreased use among teens.

👭 There were some notable differences in platform usage across Teens’ demographics:

  • GENDER: Teen girls were more likely to use TikTok, Instagram, and Snapchat, while boys were more likely to use Twitch and Reddit.

  • RACE AND ETHNICITY: Black and Hispanic teens were more likely to use TikTok, Instagram, Twitter, and WhatsApp than White teens.

  • Black teens used TikTok more than other ethnicities, more Hispanics used WhatsApp.

  • AGE: Older teens (ages 15-17) were more likely to use social media platforms than younger teens (ages 13-14). E.g., 73% of older teens used Instagram, vs 45% of younger.

  • INCOME: While Facebook use has decreased, Teens in low- and middle-income households use more vs higher income (used by 44% of teens in households earning <$30,000 a year, 39% earning $30,000 to $75,000 , 27% earning >$75,000).

As the social media landscape continues to shift, it's crucial for businesses to engage on the right platforms to more effectively reach and communicate with their target audiences.


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