Social media usage has increased dramatically over the last three years among the Affluent, but especially so among Ultra High Net Worth individuals, according to a second quarter study of affluent social media and technology usage conducted by Spectrem Group.
UHNW individuals (with a net worth between $5 million and $25 million, not including primary residence) are leading the social media charge, especially over the past year, when usage has flattened out in less wealthy households.
Whereas last year nearly four-in-ten (38 percent) of UHNW individuals surveyed said they did not use social media of any kind, that percentage dropped this year to 31 percent. In comparison, the percentage of Non-Millionaires and Millionaires who said they did not use any form of social media was basically unchanged over the past year, dropping by just 1 percentage point and 2 percentage points, respectively.
Over the past three years, use of Facebook has surged across all wealth levels. The percentage of Mass Affluent investors with a net worth between $100,000 and $1 million (NIPR) using Facebook jumped from 29 percent in 2010 to 61 percent, while Millionaire usage more than doubled from 26 percent to 55 percent. UHNW Facebook usage nearly doubled from 27 percent to 52 percent.
Year-to-year, however, Facebook usage has flattened out, except among UHNW individuals. Among the Mass Affluent and Millionaires, it ticked upward one percentage point and dipped one percentage point, respectively. Among UHNW individuals surveyed, Facebook usage increased five percentage points to 52 percent.
Affluent usage of LinkedIn has likewise surged over the past three years, and usage increases as wealth level increases. Thirty-one percent of Mass Affluent individuals use the career networking site, compared with 34 percent of Millionaires and 40 percent of UHNW individuals.
Twitter, though, appears to be the province of younger people, who are generally less wealthy, as witness its decreasing usage across the wealth levels. Only 7 percent of UHNW individuals report using Twitter, compared with 9 percent of Millionaires and 11 percent of Mass Affluent individuals.