Social Media: Everybody’s Doing It, But For Different Reasons [Charts]

by Pam Dyer

Social Media: Everybody’s Doing It, But For Different Reasons [Charts]

While the demographics of the average social media user mirror the average U.S. adult (i.e., everyone’s socializing online in some way), a recent Retail Advertising and Marketing Association survey conducted by BIGresearch shows types of social media use vary greatly by age and gender. The survey, “Social Media: An Inside Look at the People Who Use It”, compares U.S. users on the social Web to the average American adult. But even with all the Twitter chitchat, Facebook fan groups, and blogs to be followed, consumers believe face-to-face communication is the most powerful.

Here are some interesting graphs from the report — mouse over them to see the underlying details:

View the full research report (PDF)

View the raw research data comparing social media users to U.S. adults 18+ (PDF)

View the raw research data comparing all social media user demographics (PDF)

Takeaways from the report:

  • 70% of social media users between the ages of 18-34 regularly use Facebook more than other sites such as MySpace, Twitter, and Classmates.com
  • 72% of social media users say that after an online search, they communicate with others about a product or service with face-to-face communication
  • More people who use social media prefer to give advice about a product or service rather than receive it
  • Social media users are more likely to use other new media compared to adults 18+
  • 71% of female social media users regularly use Facebook, compared to 61% of males
  • More men than women prefer to communicate with others via a cell phone conversation after searching for a product or service online


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