For a while there, Facebook was all the rage. The world’s biggest social media platform took over our news feeds as friends shared fun pictures of their travels, happy moments, and meme-worthy quotes. But now it’s been overtaken by another platform. The days of creating status updates at the tap of a button are long gone.
Yes, we all still use Facebook. But while Instagram continues to grow by leaps and bounds, Facebook’s growth rate has decreased each year since 2012. At least, that’s what Statista’s Compound Monthly Search Volume report tells us.
Last year, Facebook had a search volume of 4.2 billion searches per month. This year, that figure is expected to be around 3.8 billion searches per month.
Meanwhile, Instagram’s expected search volume is estimated to be 8.4 billion searches per month (up from 6.3 billion in 2018), and WhatsApp’s expected search volume is 15.19 billion (up from 9.1 billion in 2018).
It wasn’t long ago that all our social platforms were dominated by Facebook. Sure, we had Twitter when it came to breaking news and YouTube for viral content. But in most cases, we interacted with friends on the big G’s platforms. Instagram was originally a standalone app with no connection to Facebook, and it was seen as a little sister to Facebook’s social network.
But that’s all been put to change. Where Facebook is slowly phasing out its involvement in users’ daily lives, Instagram is taking over. The app has become a destination for people seeking news, fun, and inspiration.
In August 2018, TikTok made waves when it was revealed that the platform was valued at a massive $11+Billion. As of January 2020, TikTok’s monthly active users are currently sitting at around 500 million, with an estimated worldwide user base of 1.7billion. With so many people using the app, businesses are taking note and are jumping on the opportunity to reach this audience. And what’s interesting is that while TikTok is a “free” app, businesses can now pay to boost their content and gain more engagement.
WhatsApp’s Explosive Growth
WhatsApp was one of the first mobile social platforms to offer a more intimate experience. The app, which was founded in 2009 and is owned by Facebook, is primarily used for private conversations between two or more individuals. But it has so much more to offer.
The service is now available in over 200 countries, with the most monthly active users located in India, Indonesia, and Brazil. WhatsApp’s success is largely thanks to a community of users who were instrumental in expanding the app’s user base. Now, with over a billion active monthly users, businesses can take advantage of this audience by creating marketing campaigns, promoting products and services, and gathering together for networking events.
Facebook’s Declining User Base
For years, Facebook was the king of social media. Thanks to its popular features, such as stories, the ability to connect with friends, and its expansive reach, Facebook managed to attract a large audience.
But things are changing. Since 2017, Facebook’s monthly average daily active users have been decreasing. In February 2022, Facebook’s daily average user base was around 228 million. By comparison, in February 2021, Facebook’s daily average user base was around 226 million, and in February 2020, it was around 218 million. The impact of the pandemic and the subsequent ‘qeening’ have undoubtedly played a role in this trend, but the platform’s apparent apathy for regional news and its aggressive enforcement of cracking down on automated posts are also factors.
While Instagram, TikTok, and WhatsApp offer unique perspectives into the world of social media, Facebook is a force to be reckoned with. And despite its recent missteps, we should still hold it in high regard. After all, it was Facebook that invented the word ‘millennial’ and ‘Gen Z.’
The Impact Of Social Media On Youth
Let’s be honest, we’re all aware of the impact that social media has had on our lives. Thanks to the platforms, we’ve all become savvy internet users, learned to value a like over a thousand words, and have developed a taste for LOL-worthy memes. But the truth is, the platforms have had an even bigger impact on our youth. In the past five years, social media has completely transformed how we will interact with each other as adults.
In 2022, 43% of U.S. adults between the ages of 18 and 24 use TikTok. That’s compared to 24% of adults between the ages of 25 and 34. And while a smaller percentage of adults between the ages of 35 and 44 use TikTok than millennials, 48% of them use the app. In 2021, TikTok users surpassed users of all other social media platforms combined, and the trend looks likely to continue.
WhatsApp, TikTok’s biggest rival, now offers a parenting service that allows parents to follow events and notifications from their kids’ phones. Whether it’s an emergency or one of their favorite cartoons, parents can now keep an eye on their children while they’re online. This could especially be helpful around bedtime, when children are more likely to be online than during the day. For instance, the service could notify parents if their kids log into a questionable account or if they display worrisome behavior online.
TikTok and its contemporaries offer platforms where users can connect with others and share content that is of interest to them. This could lead to greater empathy and less of a need to troll or shock, as people are increasingly comfortable in their own skin and aren’t afraid to show the world their true colors.