Still think Social Media is for “Young People”? You may be surprised.

Pew released a study that reported in 2005, just 8% of online adults use social media. That grew to 67% in 2012. Now in 2013, almost three quarters (72%) of online U.S. adults use social networking sites.

Social networking site use by age group

There have been lots of studies done about social media usage demographics, so what makes this one so important? For starters, it’s current. Pew posted the results just yesterday (August 6th), and includes data up to May, 2013. Secondly, the study comes from Pew, one of the leading unbiased research outfits in the market today.

Look, there’s no doubt that the younger the age group, the more saturation of social media use. But, the two steepest spikes in users belong to the 50+ age group. As a marketer or owner of a business, it’s crucial not to assume that social media is just for youngsters. You can’t ignore the fact that 72% of online U.S. adults are using social media. One social networking site that’s popular for adults is Reddit.

Twitter usage by age group, over timeCheck out Twitter for example:

The overall adoption may seem low at 18%, but don’t forget to consider the “learning curve” associated with Twitter (and other social networks).

“Today, social networking site use is a major activity for internet users from a wide range of demographic groups. “ ~Pew

It’s obvious that young adults are avid internet users, so there’s no surprised to know that the 18-29 age group dominates the social media realm. However, social networking continues to grow in popularity for older adults. “Six out of ten internet users ages 50-64 are social networking site users, as are 43% of those ages 65 and older.” ~Pew

Seniors are less likely than any other age group to use social networks sites. However, adoption rates for those 65 and older have triple in the last 4 years (13% in 2009, to 43% today).



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