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BizReport : Social Marketing : March 01, 2017

Older users getting snappy with Shapchat

If you thought SnapChat was all about youngsters making silly faces and drooling over new filters, think again. A new report from eMarketer notes that much of the messaging platform's growth is coming from middle-aged people.

by Helen Leggatt

Market research firm eMarketer projects that 70.4 million Americans will use Snapchat in 2017, up from its June prediction of 66.6 million users.


According to eMarketer, this year will see a rise in users aged between 45 and 54 (6.4% compared with the previously projected 4.2%) while projections for users 24 and younger have been decreased. Between 2015 and 2016, the numberof 25-34 year old Snapchat users increased by 48.3% but this year it will decrease to just 13.9%.

That means that, this year, 8 million Snapchat users will be over the age of 45, accounting for just over 11% of the total U.S. user base. This group is projected to make up 12.2% of the app's users in 2018 and 13.3% by 2019. Last year, just 9% of Snapchat's American users were over the age of 45, and in 2015 it was 5.6%.

So what is behind the adoption of Snapchat by older users? According to eMarketer analyst Jaimie Chung it has a lot to do with content.

"The platform has multiple partnerships with television networks for mini episodes," Ms. Chung said. "Meanwhile, the younger groups are less likely to add Snapchat when Instagram Stories can fulfill their broadcasting needs."

Brands are also turning to Snapchat to reach target audiences "at eye level", according to Snaplytics' survey. Almost half (48.8%) of brands use Snapchat, and that figure is expected to rise to over 70% by the end of the 2017. In particular, videos are becoming an increasingly popular Snapchat format for brands. Just over six in 10 (61%) of brand content on Snapchat is video, up 5% from Q1 2016. Furthermore, brands are being more consistent with content posting. On average, brands post twice a week and completion rates in Q4 2016 (the number of people who view an entire Snapchat Story) rose to 88% from 84% the previous quarter.

Tags: research, social media, trends

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