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Roughly two-thirds of U.S. adults (68%) now report that they are Facebook users, and roughly three-quarters of those users access Facebook on a daily basis. With the exception of those 65 and older, a majority of Americans across a wide range of demographic groups now use Facebook.

  • Social networks appeal to diverse demographics:
    • Facebook popular across a diverse mix
    • Pinterest appeals to females – women nearly twice as likely as men to be users
    • LinkedIn popular among college grads, Internet users in higher-income homes
    • Twitter and Instagram once showed substantial overlap in user bases, and holding particular appeal to certain age groups but that is no longer the case:
      • Instagram - 64% A18-29 vs. Twitter 40%
      • Instagram - 40% A30-49 vs. Twitter 27%
      • Urban dwellers - 42% Instagram vs. 29% Twitter

(Source: Pew Research Center, Social Media Fact Sheet, 2018)

The World Wide Web turned 30 on March 12, 2019.  In this relatively short period of time, "going online" has become an integral part of many Americans' daily lives – at work, at home, and at leisure.  We now have a generation of consumers who never know life without being online, and even older segments of the population have incorporated the Internet into their routines.

From the PC as geek "toy", desktops, laptops, mobile phones and tablets have evolved into essential tools.  Consumers routinely seek out audio and editorial content online.  Ever-faster connections have led to the rise of online as a primary vehicle for video entertainment – to the point where the computer and mobile devices are now referred to as "second" and "third screens" respectively.

The Internet grew rapidly since its invention and in more recent years has been accompanied by the rise of mobile connectivity:

  • An estimated 86.5% of A18+ are using the internet in the U.S. as of 2019
  • Share of adults in the U.S. who used the internet in 2018 by age:
    • 18-29: 98%
    • 30-49: 97%
    • 50-64: 87%
    • 65+: 66%

(Source: Statista; Statista DMO 2018)

Adult ownership of cell phones has also soared:

  • Cell phone penetration
    • 73% penetration in first survey in 2006
    • 95% in 2018
  • Smartphone ownership
    • 35% in first survey in 2011
    • 77% in 2018
  • In 2018, 89% of Adults 18+ use the internet, which accounts for roughly nine-in-ten adults using the internet.

(Source: Pew Research Center Mobile Fact Sheet, 2018)

  • In 2019 – an estimated 237MM people 12+ own a smartphone
  • An estimated 150MM people 12+ own a tablet in 2019

(Source: The Infinite Dial 2019 - Edison Research/Triton Digital)

  • Consumers look at their phones an average of 52 times a day, totaling 14B looks per day
  • Top 5 ways consumers use their smartphone:
    • 93% - Text
    • 87% - Phone
    • 82% - Email
    • 71% - Social
  • Smartphones are the preferred device for the following:
    • News
    • Photos
    • Social Media
    • Watching Short Videos
    • Video Calls
    • Banking
  • 84% of working adults use their personal phones during working hours while 70% of consumers use their phones outside of work.
  • Mobile payment use has stabilized among consumers as they are trust making payments on their smartphones.

(Source: Deloitte; Global Consumer Survey, 2018)

Social media use plays a big part in American lives today

  • An estimated 223MM people 12+ are currently using social media in 2019
    • There are an estimated 15MM fewer Facebook users today than in 2017
  • 2019 Social Media Brand Usage among A12-34:
    • Facebook – 62%
    • Instagram – 66%
    • Twitter – 29%
    • Snapchat – 62%
    • Pinterest – 31%
    • LinkedIn – 21%
    • WhatsApp – 23%

(Source: The Infinite Dial 2019 - Edison Research/Triton Digital)

According to Pew Research Center:

  • 69% of the American public uses some type of social media
  • 73% of internet users use YouTube
  • 68% of internet users use Facebook
  • 35% of internet users use Instagram
  • 24% of internet users use Twitter
  • Social users are highly engaged
  • Most of social users visit sites at least once a day
  • 74% of Facebook users visit the site daily
  • 60% of Instagram users visit the site daily
  • 46% of Twitter users visit the site daily

Penetration of the 5 most popular social media sites among online adults; all grew, 2018 vs. 2012

  • Facebook – 57% > 68%
  • Instagram – 11% > 35%
  • Pinterest – 13% > 29%
  • LinkedIn – N/A > 35%
  • Twitter – 13% > 24%

(Source: Pew Research Center, Social Media Fact Sheet, 2018)

As online populations continue to grow, and time spent with digital media, marketers are diverting more of their ad budgets to online, with digital advertising becoming the #1 media category. 

  • Total mobile ad revenues continued to grow, increasing its share of internet advertising revenue to 62.5% in the first half of 2018.
    • Desktop-$9.6B
    • Mobile-$16B
    • Total Search-$25.6B

(Source: IAB/PwC Internet Ad Revenue Report, HY 2018)

While many digital media users are advertising adverse compared to traditional media users, they are likely to utilize devices and online sources – including advertising – to help plan purchases and compare prices among retailers.

Total digital advertising revenue continues to grow year over year:

Digital advertising in the U.S. soared to about $50B in the first half of 2018. This represents a 23% YOY increase from the first half of 2017. 

(Source: IAB, Internet Advertising Revenue Reports, 2018)

  • Share of adults in the U.S. who used the internet by educational background:
    • 65% - Less than HS
    • 84% - HS graduate
    • 93% - Some college
    • 97% - College +

(Source: Statista; Pew Research Center Internet/Broadband Fact Sheet, 2018)

For additional information/insights on Digital (Internet/Mobile/Social Media)

IAB  (Interactive Advertising Bureau)
http://www.iab.net

Borrell Associates, Inc.
https://www.borrellassociates.com

comScore, Inc.
http://www.comscore.com

eMarketer
http://www.emarketer.com

Nielsen
http://www.nielsen.com

Pew Research Internet Project
http://www.pewinternet.org

Smartphone owners by age:

  • A18-29: 94%
  • A30-49: 89%
  • A50-64: 73%
  • A65+: 46%

20% of US adults are smartphone only internet users.

(Source: Pew Research Center Mobile Fact Sheet - Internet/Broadband Fact Sheet 2018)

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