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Latest Research shows 2015 Social Media Trends

By Robert Allen 26 Aug, 2015

Pew Research centre releases latest research on the social media activity of 1,907 US adults

In digital marketing, we see a lot of surveys that help to illuminate recent trends. Because surveys via email, website or social media are generally easier or cheaper to conduct, they are usually the medium by which the data in gathered. This data is highly useful, but collecting it via a digital platform gives a certain bias and may not always give a fully accurate picture of the true trends.

This survey from Pew Research centre, published last week, was conducted via phone interviews with 1907 adults in the US, across all fifty states and via both landline and mobile. The results offer an interesting insight into the latest social media trends.

A strong majority are Smartphone users

The research found that 67% of US adults are Smartphone users; a strong majority which will increase rapidly the in the coming years. We have already passed the mobile tipping point, as the survey showed that 85% of the population were internet users, meaning that approximately 80% of internet users were also Smartphone users (making the safe assumption that those with Smartphones are internet users). This has serious marketing implications when it comes to the need for responsive sites and considering mobile ad placements.

Pinterest and Instagram are the fastest growing

Since 2012 growth has plateaued for some of the more established social networks, whilst Pinterest and Instagram have boomed. Facebook continued to grow slightly, whilst LinkedIn actually saw a slight dip on 2015. It is important to note this only represents the US market, and user numbers for Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter globally continue to increase considerably thanks to growth in emerging markets.

In terms of marketing implications, it is clear that if you want to use Social Media to reach your target audience then investment in Pinterest and Instagram could be more effective than Twitter. This is particularly true if your target audience is young adults, as the results show that 55% of 18-29-year-olds use Instagram.

Social Media Growth Stats

User Engagement is up

Although in the US user numbers for some of the big social networks have plateaued, engagement is still on the increase, which is good news for digital marketers, the proportion of Instagram, Pinterest and LinkedIn users who use site daily has increased significantly since September 2014. 59% of Instagram users, 27% of Pinterest users and 22% of LinkedIn users visit these platforms daily. Facebook still comes top for engagement, with 70% of users reporting that they log in daily.

Facebook and Instagram user engagement

Facebook remains the king of Social

72% of all online adults in the US use Facebook, which is considerably ahead of any other social media platform, in-fact it's double the next largest! In addition as we previously mentioned it also scores highest for engagement from its user base, so for anyone considering a social media marketing campaign Facebook should probably be the first port of call. 82% of 18-29-year-olds use the platform, but the impressive segmentation options mean it is good for targeting all age groups. 64% of 50-64-year-olds use it and even among the 65+ cohort very close to half do (48%).

For more stats on 2015 US social media trends see the full report from Pew Research Centre

By Robert Allen

I was the Editor of Smart Insights between 2015-2017. I managed the blog and you will find blog articles on a range of subjects- Marketing Technology trends and latest tech developments are a regular focus, as well as exploring key marketing concepts. You can get in touch with me on Twitter and connect with me on LinkedIn. The new Editor is Carolanne Mangles.

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