American social networkers spend almost 54 billion minutes on Facebook.
Facebook’s dominance of the social media landscape can be measured not only in users (more than 750 million), but also in minutes. Americans spent 53.5 billion (that’s billion with a “b”) minutes on Facebook last May, up 6 percent from 50.6 billion minutes from the previous year, according to Nielsen’s first-ever report on social media.
Also gobbling up much of Americans’ time online was Blogger (723.8 million minutes), the blogging platform Tumblr (623.5 million minutes), Twitter (562.2 million minutes) and LinkedIn (325.7 million minutes). In contrast, Americans spend only a fleeting 9.1 billion minutes on YouTube.
Nielsen’s findings about the increasing popularity of social media may not be surprising (Facebook reaches 70 percent of active Internet users in the United States), but the numbers can be staggering, while some of the data captures an illuminating snapshot of the who’s and hows of social media gazing.
For example, the report found, 62 percent of Facebook visitors were women, while men are more likely to visit LinkedIn and Wikipedia. African-Americans are more represented on Twitter than any of the other nine most popular social networks and blogs, while female teens are most represented on Tumblr (which enjoyed something of a career year, according to the Nielsen report. Its audience grew three-fold).
Women comprise the majority of social network and blog visitors, while users between the ages of 18 and 34 are “the most active social networkers.” Women watch more online videos than men, but men spend more time indulging their habit (247 million minutes per month vs. 226 million minutes)
Among smartphone users who download apps, games is the most popular category (67 percent), followed by weather (65 percent), social networking (60 percent), maps and navigation (55 percent) and music (45 percent).
But social media is not just for young people any more. More than twice as many people over the age of 55 (109 percent) visited social networking sites on their mobile phones last year.
Nielsen’s findings correspond to Millionaire Corner’s 2011 social network study that found a dramatic spike over a six month period by Facebook and LinkedIn users. Last December, for example, Facebook, was visited by more than a quarter of Mass Affluent, Millionaire and Ultra High Net Worth households. By June, usage had increased from 29 percent to 55 percent in households with a net worth between $100,000 and $1 million (not including primary residence). Usage increased 20 percent in households with a net worth between $1 million and $4.9 million as well as those with a net worth between $5 million and $24.9 million).