It's Official: Teens are flocking to Twitter

In January this year I reported that 13-24 year old New Zealanders we're leaving Facebook.

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In April I shared a significant piece of research showing Facebook had declined 9% in the previous year for teens.

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And Twitter was almost on 'importance' parity with Facebook for 16 year olds.


Just a few months later, new research has discovered;

Nearly a quarter of teens now use Twitter to catch up with friends and keep track of celebrities, a big jump in usage as teens flock to different social media sites and spend less time on Facebook to avoid their parents and other adults as well as rampant "oversharing."

One in four online teens use Twitter, up from 16% in 2011, according to a survey by the Pew Research Center and the Berkman Center for Internet & Society at Harvard University. That's higher than the 16% of online adults who now use Twitter

LATimes Poll - Click through to share your vote

LATimes Poll - Click through to share your vote

Twitter, Instagram and Tumblr are now the most preferred social networking sites for teens.

Seven percent of online teens say they use Twitter most often, while 3% say they use Instagram most often and 1% say Tumblr.

Another reason teens like these particular social networks is privacy.

On Facebook, 6 of 10 teens say they use restrictive privacy settings to be sure their posts are seen only by their friends. An additional 25% allow posts to be seen by friends of friends. On Twitter, a quarter of teens post updates privately to friends. Part of the appeal of Twitter: teens don’t have to use their real names so they don’t have to worry about updates turning up in Google searches or being discovered by parents.

Should brands and advertisers on Facebook share some responsibility for this? Sure teens wouldn't hangout in the same bar as their parents but many of the concerns revolve around poor quality content, privacy, over sharing and invasive adverts from brands they don't even subscribe to [like]. 

The social network landscape is becoming more fragmented by the day. Keeping tabs on where different groups of consumers are hanging out and sharing stories is vital when monitoring the health of a brand and connecting with customers when they need you.

This year listening to the social web is going to get harder and harder for some brands.

Times are certainly changing...