July 14, 2020

Facebook is too old and Snapchat is only for teenagers?

Social media are now said to have a lot going for them, and both private individuals and companies use these assessments when deciding on their online presence. But what does the target group distribution on Facebook and the like really look like? The fact is: The world is online. Around 3.9 billion people worldwide are regularly on the Internet. Most of them on social media. And users are not only interested in interpersonal relationships. For many, social media have become one of the most important sources of information. In order to know which social media campaigns can be targeted and profitable, marketers, companies and communicators should know where their target group is.

Ein Smartphone auf grünen Blättern.

Source: Unsplash / Pratik Gupta

The blue giant: Facebook, THE social network

Facebook is still the best-known social media platform. Around 2.5 billion people worldwide use the online giant, 32 million of them in Germany alone. Users are characterized by a high level of interaction: A full 60 percent call up Facebook up to eight times a day. All age groups are represented among the users. However, the network has seen particularly strong growth in recent years among users aged 30 and over. Among the younger generations, on the other hand, it seems to be losing importance. It is striking that Facebook achieves its greatest use in the over-60 age group. This means that companies can also get in touch with a generation that is otherwise rather sparsely represented on social media.

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Images, videos and emotions: Content on Instagram

Instagram’s community is growing and growing. Around 700 million people worldwide now use the visual platform. In Germany, there are 15 million users. In terms of content, it’s all about images and videos. The platform focuses on emotions. Textual content tends to be secondary. This is particularly popular with 14- to 29-year-olds. Among them, 71 percent use the social network. In contrast to Facebook, the gender distribution is not entirely balanced. Slightly more women are active on Instagram than men. In addition, it is becoming the absolute favorite among teenagers: In terms of users across Germany, it is now beating its big blue sister. Companies score points on Instagram with high-quality photo and video content. Of course, the platform is predestined for lifestyle topics. But it is also increasingly developing into an information and sales channel.

Stream on: YouTube is almost impossible to top

In terms of pure user numbers, YouTube still can’t hold a candle to Facebook with 1.9 billion users. However, the streaming platform is the most widely used social medium. It has a 70 percent usage rate among all age groups. The majority of users are between 16 and 29 years old. The employed among them can look forward to a medium to high income. Ads are particularly rewarding on this social medium. In addition, a broad spectrum of areas of interest is covered, which means that more niche topics can also be placed.

Hand hält ein Smartphone mit dem Youtube-Symbol auf dem Display.

Source: Unsplash / Szabo Viktor

Networking on LinkedIn: Back to Business

LinkedIn is particularly popular in the B2B sector. The network already has 610 million users worldwide, 12 million of them in Germany. The focus here is clearly on employer branding and finding new employees or employers. This is precisely where the greatest potential for companies lies. With a professional presence, new employees can be found, customers retained and business relationships cultivated. The members of the network are usually also active on other social networks and belong to an older generation. This is not surprising, since business is the focus here. 40 percent of users are 35 to 49 years old, and 42 percent are even over 50. What is also striking is that women are slightly underrepresented and young people don’t do much with the platform. So if you want to appeal to a younger target group, you’d better choose another of the numerous channels.

It’s a man’s world: Twitter is older and male

Despite its high presence in the media, the short message service Twitter is not particularly popular. Worldwide, 330 million users use the platform, and in Germany there are 12 million. But across all age groups, the usage rate is just around 30 percent. The main users are men between 25 and 44, while the platform is quite unpopular with women and younger users. Among professionals, the medium is used in particular for exchanges on specific topics. Private individuals use it primarily for sports tickers or as a source of information. Companies can use the hashtags to find their target group, take part in discussions and exchange information on current industry topics.

Not just for teens: Snapchat as image cultivation

The youngest social network in our list has been growing steadily since its founding in 2011. 218 million users now send videos via the platform, including 11 million in Germany. It will hardly come as a surprise that it is mainly young members who cavort here. Gen Z in particular is strongly represented. A full 51 percent of users are between 16 and 26 years old, and 32 percent are between 25 and 34. Companies can use this network primarily to appear close and score points with the younger generation with funny and authentic videos. This has positive effects on the image and can also pay off with the growing number of older users.

Smartphone mit Snapchat-Symbol auf dem Display.

Source: Unsplash / Thought Catalog

Conclusion: It may be a little more

Many of the social media have already reached the masses. Above all, Facebook and YouTube. Here, companies can address different age groups and target groups. However, competition is also particularly fierce on these platforms. LinkedIn is obviously best suited for business matters. Snapchat appeals in particular to young target groups, while Twitter appeals to older and more male target groups. In general, however, companies should be active on various platforms for a professional online presence in order not only to be visible, but also to be able to respond to current trends and strengthen ties with customers and those who are to become customers. Knowledge of the different target groups represented in the social networks helps immensely when planning campaigns and choosing one’s own main medium.

You can find more topics about social media on our blog! Read here, for example, what the success of and criticism of TikTok is all about.


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