The Pew Internet and American Life Project has released a study entitled “Coming and Going on Facebook“. Like most Pew repors it’s interesting and also like most Pew reports it doesn’t reek of being data that is skewed by any money.
The findings echo something I have sensed for quite some time. Facebook’s jolly ship of social media dominance may have a leak. Just in the small circle of my daughter’s and her friends’ use of the service I have seen a major drop off in the past year. Other options like Twitter and Instagram are getting more play and my mentions of Facebook gets a ‘Seriously, Dad?’ look more often than not.
- 61% of current Facebook users say that at one time or another in the past they have voluntarily taken a break from using Facebook for a period of several weeks or more.
- 20% of the online adults who do not currently use Facebook say they once used the site but no longer do so.
- 8% of online adults who do not currently use Facebook are interested in becoming Facebook users in the future.
The second point should be of concern for the folks in Menlo Park. This chart from the report should also create a little agida for the social media giant.
There has been an air of ‘bulletproof-ness’ regarding Facebook and it’s one that will only be dangerous if the Facebook employees themselves feel that way. If they have some fear of being knocked down a peg or two on the social media ladder then innovation will be paramount and there will be a better chance for continued success.
If, however, they feel invincible, and in light of these kinds of statistics that would border on being plain stupid, then they could be in for a Humpty Dumpty like tumble.
I am not going to blow the “Facebook is dying!’ whistle any time soon. But when you look at the group that is leaving or giving Facebook less time it is the tech savvy young. These are the future consumers who are likely to be more understanding of digital marketing and the desire to sell stuff. At least that’s the theory. Maybe it’s just the opposite. Maybe they are becoming so jaded that Facebook wouldn’t be able to get them to pay attention to any marketing messages.
It’s a matter of opinion for sure. What’s yours? Is Facebook facing an exodus of epic proportions or is this just a bump in an otherwise dominant road to social media superiority?