Facebook has a major problem in its attempts to appeal to teens, with the platform being blown away by both YouTube and TikTok.
Younger markets are critical for social media platforms and their future growth prospects. The more attached users are to a platform early on, and the more their online social lives are intertwined with it, the more impetus there will be for them to continue using it in the coming years.
Unfortunately for Facebook, its usage among this critical demographic — ages 13 to 17 — has plummeted. According to Pew Research Center, the number of teens saying they use Facebook has dropped from 71% in 2014-2015 to a mere 32% in 2022. In contrast, 95% of teens use Google’s YouTube, while 67% use TikTok.
Pew also found some interesting demographic differences within the target group.
There are some notable demographic differences in teens’ social media choices. For example, teen boys are more likely than teen girls to say they use YouTube, Twitch and Reddit, whereas teen girls are more likely than teen boys to use TikTok, Instagram and Snapchat. In addition, higher shares of Black and Hispanic teens report using TikTok, Instagram, Twitter and WhatsApp compared with White teens.
The study is bad news for Facebook and may provide insight into why the company is pivoting so hard toward the metaverse. If Facebook can execute its vision for the metaverse, it may be able to reclaim its crown.