Although I’ve never personally got into the groove of hashtagging and tweeting my every thought and move on Twitter, many individuals and businesses alike find the social media site extremely appealing. It’s a fairly simple platform to use that allows people to quickly connect with friends, colleagues, businesses, teams and celebrities, as well as access news updates, political commentary and any other trending topic for that matter. Twitter users basically talk about everything.
Twitter was created back in 2006 and now has roughly 255 million monthly active users, producing 500 million tweets every day. As of the end of 2013, 18% of online adults use Twitter, up 2% from 2012. Although Twitter didn’t experience a significant amount of growth over that year, the site is used by more online adults than Instagram; Twitter is still used less than Facebook, LinkedIn and Pinterest.
Twitter is most popular among young adults; 31% of online adults between the ages of 18 and 29 use Twitter. However, when breaking down the age groups as shown in the chart to the right, the 35-54 group accounts for the largest portion of Twitter users at 43%. 33% of Twitter users are 18-34 and 24% of users are 55 or older. Unlike Facebook, Twitter is not an aging social media site. Only 5% of adults 65 or older who are active online use Twitter, compared to 45% who use Facebook.
Education levels, income and location (urban/suburban/rural) don’t seem to play a role in determining who’s on Twitter, but there is a noteworthy trend regarding race. 29% of adult African Americans who use the internet are on Twitter. This is a much larger percentage than the white and Hispanic demographics on the site. Only 16% of white, non-Hispanic and 16% of Hispanic adult internet users have a Twitter account.
According to the social media study conducted by the Pew Research Center, 46% of Twitter users report visiting the site daily with 29% visiting multiple times per day. But unlike Facebook users who are likely to login to the site at least once per week, 32% of Twitter users reported checking in less than one time per week.
Tweeting on the go is extremely easy and popular. According to the Twitter business page, 76% of Twitter users login to the site via mobile devices, either on smartphones or tablets.
Despite the high number of monthly active Twitter users, an overwhelming majority of Twitter activity is generated by a small percentage of users. The top 1% of Twitter users account for 20% of all Tweets on the site; the top 5% of users account for 48% of all Tweets; the top 15% of users account for 85% of all Tweets.
Twitter users like to talk about everything, including businesses and brands. This is great news for business owners because it means their company has the potential to earn an influential spot on the site. However, before jumping into using a social media site to promote your brand, take a moment to assess if the audience you have the ability to reach on that site is the target audience you want to be speaking to. By understanding the demographic breakdown of your buyer persona and Twitter users and the overlap between them, you’ll be better prepared to determine if this site is the right platform for your marketing efforts.
Realizing how often users are on Twitter and where they are accessing the site from may also impact your Twitter activities. For example, since a large percentage of users visit the site on a daily basis, if not multiple times per day, this means you’ll want to be tweeting multiple times per day to keep your brand visible. Additionally, more and more people are accessing social media sites from their phones, so tweeting about things related to your business that people can easily read and digest on the go is important.
When you truly understand the Twitter demographic, you have a better idea of how to engage them and convert them into followers. Being active and engaging people on Twitter can be extremely rewarding, considering that companies with 51-100 followers generate 106% more traffic than those with 25 or fewer followers.[hs_action id=”9217″]