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Tomorrow's Residents Turn Away from Facebook

Teens on smartphone

New research from Pew shows teens turning to out apps. Find out which ones are popular.

Until recently, Facebook had dominated the social media landscape among America’s youth – but it is no longer the most popular online platform among teens, according to a Pew Research Center survey released May 31.

Today, roughly half (51 percent) of U.S. teens ages 13 to 17 say they use Facebook, notably lower than the shares who use YouTube, Instagram or Snapchat. Parents and grandparents worldwide will surely take note.

This shift in teens’ social media use is just one example of how the technology landscape for young people has evolved since the Center’s last survey of teens and technology use in 2014-2015. Most notably, smartphone ownership has become a nearly ubiquitous element of teen life: 95 percent of teens now report they have a smartphone or access to one. These mobile connections are in turn fueling more-persistent online activities: 45 percent of teens now say they are online on a near-constant basis.

“Teens will be our primary demographic in a few years and our current 20-something demographic weren’t teens that long ago,” NAA Senior Vice President of Operations Amy Groff says.

These are some of the main findings from the Center’s survey of U.S. teens conducted March 7-April 10, 2018. Throughout the report, “teens” refers to those ages 13 to 17.

Facebook is no longer the dominant online platform among teens. The social media landscape in which teens reside looks markedly different than it did as recently as three years ago. In the Center’s 2014-2015 survey of teen social media use, 71 percent of teens reported being Facebook users. No other platform was used by a clear majority of teens at the time: Around half (52 percent) of teens said they used Instagram, while 41 percent reported using Snapchat.

In 2018, three online platforms other than Facebook – YouTube, Instagram and Snapchat – are used by sizable majorities of this age group. Meanwhile, 51 percent of teens now say they use Facebook.

“Facebook marketing is still a successful apartment lead generator in many markets,” Groff says. “Many apartment marketers are using filters on Snapchat and Instagram as a way to building a sense of community and improve resident retention for their communities.”

Groff says she has seen YouTube used for maintenance systems tutorials and as a marketing platform, i.e. video tours of the communities.

“I sense that with it being such a popular platform for the younger generation, it will continue become more widely used in our industry,” she says.

The Latest From Instagram
Since the Pew Survey release, Apple announced that Siri processes 10 billion requests per month and Instagram will soon launch a new feature that includes long-form video (up to one hour in length), reports The Wall Street Journal (WSJ).

WSJ adds that the move by Instagram follows the trend toward greater focus on video that Facebook also announced. Facebook says its video strategy enables more video ad options, which sell at a higher rate than other digital ads