Facebook Loses The Top Spot

7/21/2022

For many years Facebook has been the most commonly used social media platform among investors. Various social media platforms have come and gone, with only a few having as much staying power as Facebook. New platforms are introduced regularly, and some have started gaining traction, especially among younger investors.

Facebook has held the top spot of most used social media platform for many years. According to Spectrem Group’s research 55 percent of investors use Facebook.  This is a slight decline since 2015, where 60 percent of investors used Facebook. LinkedIn has also seen a similar decline, from 39 percent of investors using LinkedIn’s platform in 2015 to only 29 percent in 2021. Other social media platforms have either remained static or seen an increase. Instagram usage has more than doubled since 2015, while YouTube and Pinterest usage has remained static.

Usage is significantly different when looked at by age, with 80 percent of Millennials using Facebook, and nearly two thirds, 64 percent, of Gen X investors using Facebook. Usage of other platforms is also high higher among younger investors, with over 60 percent of Millennials using LinkedIn, and half of Millennials using Instagram. Snapchat is a newer platform, with 15 percent of Millennials using, but no Baby Boomers or WWII investors using this platform. TikTok is a very similar situation, with 18 percent of Millennials engaged, yet only a very small percentage of Baby Boomers and WWII investors use this platform. 

It is not a surprise that younger investors are quicker to embrace technology, given that they have always had technology in their lives. Gen X is the last generation to have had a portion of their lives without cellphones and a variety of social media platforms to entertain them. Now there is a new generation of investors who are changing the landscape of social media again, just as Millennials did.

Generation Z is loosely defined as individuals between 9 years old and 25/26 years old. These investors are using social media differently than the generations that came before them, which is causing Facebook to become a platform that is used by older investors and not the youngest generation. YouTube is the most commonly used social media platform for Generation Z, followed by Instagram. TikTok and Snapchat are also heavily used by Generation Z, with two-thirds using these platforms.

Facebook is the fifth most commonly used social media platform for these investors, showing that the upcoming generation of individuals are not embracing Facebook at the same level as older generations. This shift reveals a higher desire among younger investors to consume information through video, as two of the top four social media platforms are venues to share video content, YouTube and TikTok. 

Given how quickly the landscape of social media changes it is likely that 10 years from now will have other social media platforms that have eclipsed Facebook, and perhaps even TikTok and Snapchat. The youngest generation will always be the quickest to adapt to new platforms, but those investors will come of age and news outlets and financial providers will need to adapt to these new platforms in order to reach the next generation of investor.