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Today sees the launch of our new GWI Social flagship report, assessing engagement figures and audience profiles on all of the top platforms and messaging apps.

Drawing on our most recent wave of research among over 47,000 internet users aged 16-64, this report looks at: Membership, Visitation and Active User numbers across the top 15 networks globally; which messaging apps have the biggest audiences; the rise of multi-networking behaviors; daily time devoted to social networking; levels of growth over the last few months; top actions on Facebook and Twitter; and the most important motivations for using social media.

Some of its key headlines include:

  • Globally, the typical internet user is now spending 1.77 hours per day on social networking. This metric has increased from 1.61 hours back in 2012. Predictably, 16-24s are at the forefront of this trend, spending almost 3.5x as long on networking each day as the 55-64 age group.
  • On average, digital consumers now have accounts on more than 6 networks and are actively using close to 4 of them. This number has increased each year since 2012.
  • Facebook remains by far the top network globally for both membership (80%) and active usage (48%). It also saw a healthy increase in active usage between Q1 and Q2. Nevertheless, the challenge presented by multi-networking is clear to see: while Facebookers were using an average of 2.5 social networks back in 2012, this figure has now risen to 4.3.
  • In terms of visitor numbers, YouTube has the biggest reach – having a lead over Facebook in 32 of the 34 markets tracked. It’s also ahead in all age groups, helping to explain why Facebook is making so much noise about the engagement figures surrounding videos posted on its site. This trend also explains why the “Monthly Active User” metric does not always tell the whole story.
  • Profiling active users on the top 10 social platforms globally shows that Tumblr, Vine and Instagram have the youngest audiences. In contrast, Facebook and LinkedIn have the oldest user bases.
  • In the app space, Facebook has the top app overall as well as the top two messaging services (Messenger and WhatsApp). Despite considerable interest from the industry, just 1% are using Periscope or Meerkat.
  • Among the messaging apps tracked by GWI, WhatsApp and Snapchat saw the biggest increases in user figures between Q1 and Q2, with Snapchat continuing to perform especially well among teens in North America, Western Europe and Australia.

For more of the latest social media trends, you can download a free summary of our GWI Social report here. Alternatively, clients can access the full version here.

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