For businesses moving online or looking to expand online, the big question is which social media platform to use. With so many options available, I have examined the statistics on social media use based on age. This allows you to target your ideal client by their social media platform use. Why is this important? It means that you can focus your time and energy on the best platform for your business and receive a bigger return for your investment.
In Australia, in 2012-13, 83% of the population aged over 15 used the Internet, 97% of these people had internet access at home. As at June 2014, there were 12.4 million internet subscribers and 20.6 million mobile phone handset subscribers. (It is interesting to note that at the time of writing this article the Australian population was 23.7 million) On average those mobile phone subscribers downloaded 0.6Gb of data each month.
Moving forward and more specifically, businesses can use these figures to help focus their online presence.
When looking at Social Media usage, Australians participate (in the more common sites) as follows:
- Facebook – 13,800,000 users (steady)
2. YouTube – 13,500,000 UAVs
3. WordPress.com – 6,100,000
4. Tumblr – 4,700,000
5. Instagram – 4,000,000 Monthly Active Australian Users (Facebook/ Instagram data)
6. LinkedIn – 3,300,000
7. Blogspot – 2,850,000
8. Twitter – 2,791,300 Active Australian Users (see calculation)
9. TripAdvisor – 2,000,000
10. Tinder – 1,500,000 Australian users (my estimation)
11. Yelp – 1,500,000
12. Snapchat – 1,070,000 Active Australian Users (see calculation).
13. Flickr – 700,000
14. Pinterest – 350,000
15. Reddit – 160,000
16. MySpace – 1200000
17. Google Plus – approx 60,000 monthly active Australian users (my estimation *revised*)
18. StumbleUpon – 50,000
19. Foursquare/Swarm – 25,000
20. Digg – 18,000
21. Delicious – 16,000
Statistics compiled by SocialMediaNews.com.au for February 2015.
Stats courtesy: Vivid Social Research Division. Figures correct as of 28/02/15.
These results are useful when businesses are starting out on social media, trying to decide where to focus their attention, or looking to expand their presence. There are extra considerations other than uptake. For example, your business may not be suited to the visually dense Instagram, but quite comfortable in the B2B environment of LinkedIn (or vice versa).
At this stage I can not find Australian age based usage rates for the different social media, however there is recent data out of the US, which can be used as an indication of what is likely to occur in Australia.
What I encourage business owners to do is to look at their definition of their ideal client and match that to the chart above. The next step is to look at the take up rates in Australia.
For example, my ideal client is aged 30-44, I am already on Facebook, Twitter, & Google+; looking at the above chart I should also be on Pinterest. However, the uptake on Pinterest in Australia is actually less than 10% of Instagram or Tumblr. So, my next step is to build my Instagram following, where I am likely to reach up to 30% of users; followed by having a look at Tumblr.
Another interesting consideration is the amount of time each group spends on each of the platforms. Looking at the time spent, I should be on Pinterest. As I said previously, there just isn’t the uptake in Australia to warrant me being there. It shows that the majority of my efforts should be on my Facebook campaign. Of interest is that my ideal client group spends slightly more time on Instagram than Tumblr and a lot less time on Twitter. Once again, I will focus my efforts where they like to hang out, taking into consideration just how many Australians use that social media platform. (Facebook, Instagram, Tumblr, Twitter)
If your client base resides outside of Australia (particularly the US), then I would recommend either beginning with a focus on Australia to hone your skills on a smaller market, or to target your efforts per the US statistics quoted herein.
All too confusing? I offer consultancy on how to define your ideal client and target them so as you can leverage your online business. The package includes valuable worksheets (which can be used when engaging any other marketing professional) and up to three hours of one on one consultation.