Who Uses Social Media? The very latest data.

Hand holding a Social Media 3d SphereThe new data is in from the latest wave of the Pew Research Center’s Internet & American Life Project. The study, published on December 30, looked at social media usage among 1800 adults (18+) from August 7 to September 16, 2013.

The answer to who uses social media is: Almost everyone. Yet, I always find the results interesting as the power of social media continues to grow.

We are way past the old stereotypes of “only kids use social media” and “it’s a waste of time”. We past those hurdles long ago. And virtually every marketer uses some form to social media to communicate with their customers, develop new ones and general promote their products and services.

But all platforms are not created equal, so here’s a quick summary of the 7 headlines from the study.

1. 73% of adults 18+ use at least one social networking site and 42% use multiple sites.

2. Facebook remains the #1 site of overall usage. 71% use Facebook. Even older demos 50-64 (60%) and 65+ (45%) now use Facebook.

3. Engagement with Facebook and Instagram is high with 63% and 57% of their respective users using the platform at least once daily.

4. Twitter usage is 18%, skewed to young, urban African-American.

5. Chicks dig Pinterest, guys not so much. Four times more women (33%) use Pinterest than men (8%)

6. LinkedIn is the business platform. 22% of adults, but 38% college grads and 38% of those earning $75k+use LinkedIn. It’s the only site where 50-64 usage (24%) exceeds 18-29 (15%) though interestingly college students/grads are now discovering its power as a job search tool.

social chart7. All 5 major platforms showed growth in 2013 so social has not peaked

We are now past the “we should do some social media” requests and are largely now into the far more strategic, analytic and measurable focus on social media. All the better.

Social media is a powerful megaphone. Businesses which spend time, resources and talent to use its strengths will reap the benefits.

Happy new year.

More Strumings


  1. Jim Walls says:

    Thanks, Lonny. Went back to previous Pew reports and found the following:

    2012: 86% ages 18-29 use Facebook.
    2013: 84% ages 18-29 use Facebook.

    Now these stats are +/- 2.9% margin-of-error, but I think you’re going to see this number begin to drop further and quicker over the next few years. I had a hunch after my 20-year-old cousin told me “nobody my age uses Facebook anymore. It’s for parents.”

    • Lonny Strum says:

      Yes Facebook is not as “cool” to younger demos any longer. But it is a social gorilla among all ages. Thanks for the feedback, Jim.

Leave a Reply