Social media has slowly crept into the lives of millions of internet users of all ages, but especially Gen Z. Whether it’s for connecting with friends, discovering new trends worldwide, or using it for business purposes, social media use has become a routine part of everyday life.
If you love posting and engaging with social media, you should think about a career as a marketing strategist. As you’ll find out when you read on, social media is not going away; if anything, more people are using it than ever. And while not every person uses social media to find and interact with brands, there are several ways you can interact and connect with consumers that foster a closer relationship.
Increased Usage of Social Media Platforms in Recent years
Let’s take a trip back to the early 2000s. At that time, Gen Z—typically defined as those born in the 1990s and early 2010s—was among the highest percentage of users of social media. They were followed by the preceding generations, who interacted with social media slightly less.
As time went on, more and more people of each generation began using social media daily. Below is a breakdown of the increase in social media as reported by the Pew Research Center.
- 18-29 in 2005—7% of respondents reported using at least one social media platform
- 18-29 in 2021—74% of respondents reported using at least one social media platform
- 30-49 in 2005: 6% of respondents reported using at least one social media platform
- 30-49 in 2021: 81% of respondents reported using at least one social media platform
- 50-64 in 2005: 4% of respondents reported using at least one social media platform
- 50-64 in 2021: 73% of respondents reported using at least one social media platform
- 65+ in 2005: 3% of respondents reported using at least one social media platform
- 65+ in 2021: 45% of respondents reported using at least one social media platform
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What Social Platforms is Gen Z Using?
If you’re looking to get into a career in social media marketing, then you’ll need to know what platforms people are using. This is especially important for businesses that want to target the highest percentage of users—Gen Z.
If you’re regularly on the internet or stay up to date on the news, you’ve likely seen Twitter making the headlines. Regardless of the reason you’re seeing news about Twitter, it’s a favorite among Gen Z. According to Pew Research Center, in 2021, 42% of 18-29-year-olds claimed to use Twitter.
Instagram is still a favorite among Gen Z users, with about 71% of 18-29-year-olds reportedly using it as of February 2021. Instagram is a platform users use to share videos, photos, and more. But it’s for more than sharing. Many users also take advantage of shopping features that allow them to buy products through an in-app checkout.
Popularized by trendy dances and short videos, TikTok is informally known as the Gen Z platform. So how many Gen Z’ers are on TikTok? According to Pew Research Center, 48% of 18-29-year olds say they’ve used TikTok as of February 2021.
Perhaps not thought of as a social media platform, Youtube still draws the attention of your average Gen Z internet user. Pew Research Center reports that 95% of 18-29-year-olds claimed to use Youtube as of February 2021. As the world’s second-largest search engine, it makes sense that so many would flock to Youtube videos over reading an article.
TikTok is Becoming One of Gen Z’s Favorite Social Media Platforms
TikTok has only been around since 2016 but didn’t really hit its stride around 2019. Other social media platforms like Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter have years (a decade in some cases) of a head start. The short video platform hit 1 billion monthly worldwide users in September 2021, so it’s not hard to imagine how much more popular it will become in the coming years.
TikTok was also the most downloaded app in 2021 with about 656 million downloads. When it comes to popularity, those aged 10-19 accounted for 25% of TikTok’s active users with another 22.4% of users aged 20-29 using it as well.
Learn to Leverage Social Media Use and Make a Career Out of It
Interested in a career as a social media marketing professional? Then you should pursue a training program at a school near you.
At Erie Institute of Technology, we offer a Web Design and Social Media Marketing Program that provides students with the skills, training, and education they need to build their careers. Learn how important social media marketing is to businesses and how you can use it successfully. You could complete your degree in as little as 15 months. Learn more today.
Ross Aresco is the CFO of Erie Institute of Technology. Erie Institute of Technology (EIT) is an Erie Pennsylvania technical/trade school providing training programs for medical, computer, electronics, manufacturing, and technology careers. EIT offers programs in many different areas to suit your interests and talents.