Baby Boomers are jumping on the social media bandwagon at a rapid rate.
Previously viewed as laggards, those over 50 are now one of the fastest growing segments in social media adoption. In the last year, social networking among 50-plus Internet users nearly doubled — from 25 percent to 47 percent, according to a Pew study. That’s compared with an increase of 10 percentage points among Internet users 18-29 years old, whose membership level is now at 86 percent.
And this is no small market segment:
These new “Social Media Mavens” are heavily connected, exploring and expanding their networks, reports CPH Research.
They have more frequent contact with individuals across all types of groups within their social network, not just family or neighbors, but issue-oriented groups and co-workers as well:
- 73% responded ‘People often come to me for advice’
- Not merely amassing ‘friends’ or ‘connections’ they are communicating regularly.
- They also have more face-to-face contact and use smart phones more than other Boomers or Generation Jones respondents (78% responded ‘New technology plays an important role in my life’)
- They are equally likely to be male as female, which defies the stereotypical female profile of the voracious social media consumer
- Of this Social Media Maven group the majority are still working, more likely than the other segments to own their own business, most likely to engage in volunteer activity and to have the highest household income
- Social Media Mavens are more likely to try new products, technologies and seek new experiences. They are recommenders who embrace the role of technology in their connected lives
If you’re reaching out to people over 50 social media should definitely be part of your PR plan.