A recent Pew survey suggests that US teens choose TikTok over Facebook as their preferred social media platform en masse.
While Instagram and Snapchat have marginally improved their ratings, the sharp fall in Facebook users, especially in the teenage demographic, has sparked new discussion on whether Facebook is still a dying company.
What Does The Pew Survey Say About Teen’s Social Media Usage?
Image Credit: PEW Research Center
The Pew survey aims to study the US teenagers’ choice of social media platforms and their use of digital devices. The survey was conducted online with 1316 respondents in the 13-17 age group from April 14 to May 4, 2022.
- It has found some emerging trends and changing preferences from 2014 to the present. Some of them are listed below.
- TikTok has emerged as the most preferred social media application. Some 67% of teens used TikTok once in a while, whereas 16% admitted using it constantly.
- From 2014 to 2022, the share of teenage Facebook users has toppled from 71% to 32%. Compared to the rise of TikTok, it seems a large chunk of the users has shifted platforms.
However, TikTok is yet to achieve the top spot. Alphabet-owned video hosting and streaming platform Youtube has made its way to the top as 95% of teens are regularly using it.
Instagram and Snapchat follow TikTok’s popularity. Their teenage user base stands at 62% and 59%, respectively.
The remaining space is occupied by other social media platforms like Twitter, Whatsapp, Twitch, and Reddit. Tumblr is well on its way to oblivion as it assumes the last spot in the ranking.
The survey has brought out some essential demographic information as well. Teen boys are more likely to use YouTube, Reddit, and Twitch. On the other hand, girls are more inclined to use TikTok, Instagram, and Snapchat.
Furthermore, an increased number of Hispanic and African American teens prefer using TikTok and Instagram.
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The Rise of Video Format
Image Credit: PEW Research Center
Overall, the survey suggests a shift in the ongoing trend of how teens prefer social media content production and broadcasting. It’s the videos, and more specifically, short videos.
Users, more specifically, teens, are now intrigued by video content.
The Dominance of TikTok
The meteoric rise of TikTok with 67% user share and the top spot achieved by YouTube, which draws 95% of teen users combinedly, suggest that the new generation of internet users are more interested in video consumption and passive scrolling rather than posting and engaging.
TikTok does not use Social Graph; therefore, its algorithms do not prioritize the content posted by friends, family, and immediate acquaintances like Facebook and Instagram. The probability of user discovery is relatively higher, and the content is short and dynamic.
All of this contributes to the feeling of community and charm of TikTok.
Trouble For Meta
Whereas TikTok is on its steady ascent to become the most downloaded application of 2022, trouble is brewing for Meta-owned Facebook and Instagram.
Recently, it released a series of changes to upgrade the platform’s competitive edge. But it has drawn severe backlash from famous Instagrammers like Kylie Jenner and Kim Kardashian.
Despite upgrades and modifications to promote a better user experience, the prospects of Instagram do not appear to be future-proof.
73% of Gen Z teens aged 15 to 17 say they ever use Instagram, compared to 45% of teens ages 13 to 14. This 28-point gap is particularly concerning in the backdrop of the rise of TikTok.
However, the world of social media is ever-changing. So it is not yet over for Facebook or Instagram.