Do you sometimes think “If I just cover my head with a pillow, all of this talk about social media might soon go away”? Yes, it does seem like a new social media site is popping up every day, and it is easy to get overwhelmed with it all. Is it just a passing fad? Let’s look at the facts:
- 87 percent of U.S. adults who go online say they have used some form of social media in 2012.
- Facebook captures 54 percent of U.S. Internet users.
- Users collectively spend more than 700 billion minutes (1.3 million years) per month on Facebook.
- 74 percent of social network users send messages to their friends as part of their daily routines.
- 87 percent of parents of teenagers are online.
- 96 percent of Generation Y-ers participate in social media.
Why do we need to understand social media? If we have hopes of selling insurance services to younger clients, we need to understand how they communicate. For instance, when my daughter was home from college, I never once saw her send an email. She certainly never opened up a newspaper or a phonebook. Instead, she was busy with text messages and Facebook. But let’s bust the myth that only Generations X and Y use social media.
Did you know that the fastest growing segment of Facebook users is now neither high school nor college students but rather females aged 55 to 65? Why? With the rest of their family on Facebook—the average user now spends an hour a day on the site—it’s the best way for them to keep up with stories and the photos of their children and grandchildren.