As a digital marketer, you recognize that social media is a valuable resource to your digital marketing strategy. If you are going to commit to a social media marketing strategy, then you will need to know where to focus your time and budget. To help make this decision easier for you, Pew Research conducted a study to determine what platforms were most popular among varying demographics.

To start, it is important to understand just how wide spread social media use has become over the years. In 2013, 73% of those surveyed, ages 18 and over, stated that they utilize a social media platform of some sort. It is not surprising that Facebook is the most commonly used social media site (71% of adults on the internet), but what is interesting is that 43% of those surveyed noted having accounts on multiple social media sites. If only one social networking site is used, it is commonly Facebook (84%), with LinkedIn (8%), Pinterest (4%), Twitter and Instagram (2% each) trailing far behind.

Just because the latter four social media sites aren’t the go-to for a person who does not want to belong to multiple networking sites, does not mean they are not without their own niche group of dedicated members. For digital marketers it is important to understand who the audience is on each platform:


-The fan base tends to consist of females ranging from 18-49 years old.

-Those on Pinterest are more likely to fall into a higher income bracket ($75,000 +) than the bottom income bracket (> $30,000).


-The percentage of adults using Twitter in 2013 remained relatively flat compared to 2012.

-Young adults ages 18-29 are the group most likely to use Twitter.

-Unlike Pinterest, there was not a large difference in terms of number of Twitter users by household income.


-Use of Instagram amongst adults has increased 4% over the last year, but the use of Instagram amongst those 18-29 years old has increased 9% since 2012. Other platforms did not show statistically significant increases or decreases in the percentage of adults using the platforms in 2013.

-There has been an 11% increase in Instagram use among African Americans.

-It is interesting to note that Instagram usage is more common among people living in urban areas than in rural areas.


-Adults on LinkedIn generally possess a college degree and are between the ages of 30-64 years old.

-There is a higher percentage of men (24%) reporting that they have LinkedIn than woman (19%).

-Those surveyed that use LinkedIn are commonly located in urban or suburban areas.

Understanding which platform would be best to focus on your particular demographic is essential to ensure that your marketing dollars are being spent efficiently. If you are currently active on Facebook and are looking to branch out to another platform, check the demographics to see if your target population is active on that platform before you jump in with both feet.