Social Media Statistics … Lots to Learn From Current Data

It is a fact of the internet that every click, every view, and every sign-up is recorded somewhere. And theoretically, available forever. Depending on your view, this is either very creepy or fantastically interesting. As I can be a data nerd at times, I fall firmly in the second camp. Watch and learn from these social media statistics.


With a little effort, you can discover all sorts of interesting stats about most anything. We spend time keeping up with social media sites and users, so we’ve collated the best of them in this bumper facts list.


Social media use isn’t quite universal—but it’s getting close. Seventy percent of the U.S. population now has at least one social networking profile; more than half use two or more social networks. The number of worldwide social media users is projected to grow from 2.1 billion last year to 2.5 billion by 2018.


For the curious, these represent a series of numbers that boggle the mind, users counted in tens and hundreds of millions, and time in millions and billions of hours.


For marketers, knowing the statistics behind the social networks can help define strategy, allowing focused targeting of users.

Related post: Facebook Stories … Have You Heard These Remarkable Ones?



Take a look at these statistics to gather insights on the current state of social media marketing, and keep them in mind as you create your social media plan this year!


social media statistics
Social media statistics.

Facebook accounts for 1 in every 6 minutes spent online, and one in every five minutes spent on mobile. (ComScore, 2015)

Considering that there are over 1 billion active websites online right now, owning 16.6% of the total timeshare is huge.


There are 1.65 billion active mobile social accounts globally with 1 million new active mobile social users added every day. (We Are Social, 2015)

Your mobile social media campaigns need to be optimized, and since mobile ads are relatively cheap and easy to produce, you can afford to do a little A/B testing to see what resonates with your audience.

Social media statistics … Facebook continues to be the most widely used social media platform, with 79% of American internet users. (Pew Research, 2016)

Based on total population, (not just internet users) 68% of U.S. adults (there’s a good chance your customers are included here) use it.

Here are some more stats about paid ads:

Instagram saw $595 million in mobile ad revenue in 2016. (WordStream, 2017)

That number is only going to increase this year.

Facebook ad revenue increased by 59% year over year in Q3 2016. (Seeking Alpha, 2016)

That’s almost 7 billion generated from ad sales. So, yes, it’s time to start advertising on Facebook.

More than 3 million businesses are advertising on Facebook. (Facebook, 2017)

Appeal to your audiences pain points with paid ads, and harness Facebooks enormous reach.

Posts on Linkedin that contain images have a 98% better comment rate (LinkedIn), and posts with links have a 200% higher engagement rate.

If you’re using LinkedIn as a part of your strategy (which you should be), listen up.

Facebook posts that pose questions generate 100% more comments. (HubSpot)

If it’s engagement you’re going for, try surveying your followers a little.


80% of marketers indicated that their social media efforts increased traffic. (HubSpot, 2014)

Your persona is already on social media, waiting for great content to show up on their timeline — all you have to do is provide it for them.


Visual content is more than 40 times more likely to get shared on social media than other types of content. (HubSpot, 2017)

Check out this post for more about aligning visuals to leverage your content.


Facebook by far is the most important platform for marketers, with 62% of selecting Facebook, followed by LinkedIn at 16%. (Social Media Examiner, 2017)

Facebook continues to hold the top spot as the biggest social media platform, but you’ll see that several other statistics suggest this might not be the case for long.


social media statistics worldwide
Social media statistics worldwide.

Most marketers aren’t sure their Facebook marketing is effective: 40% of marketers don’t know if it is working, and 53% have seen declines in their news feed exposure. (Social Media Examiner, 2017)

Facebook’s pay to play approach has led a lot of marketers to look elsewhere. Combine that with the next statistic, and you’ll understand why most marketers aren’t sure how well Facebook marketing is working out for them.


A surprising 93% of social marketers regularly use Facebook ads and 64% plan on increasing their Facebook ads activities. (Social Media Examiner, 2017)

Despite the drop-off of unpaid marketers using Facebook, many have given in to the pay to play approach, seeing a lot of success with paid ads.


Social media statistics … At least 91% of marketers want to know the most effective social tactics and the best ways to engage their audience with social media. (Social Media Examiner, 2017)

Creating your buyer personas early on in your marketing campaign can help you identify how to engage with your social media following.


46% of web users look towards social media when making a purchase. (Marketing Tech Blog, 2014)

Social media is a great source for seeing real-time feedback from the customers of a business that you are considering purchasing from. This is why it’s important to have a dedicated social media team that can engage with fans and handle customer services problems quickly and professionally.


Most top brands are on Facebook (99%), followed by Twitter (97%), Google+ (70%), Pinterest (69%), and Instagram (59%). (Marketing Tech Blog, 2014)

While you might want your brand to be where the top brands are, this also shows that there are opportunities to reach your persona on social platforms where the top brands aren’t there to compete.


B2B marketers invest in social media to increase brand exposure (83%), increase web traffic (69%), and gain marketing insights (65%). (Marketing Tech Blog, 2014)

Social media is great for increasing brand awareness and generating leads, but you can also use insights from social media to create dynamite buyer personas.


70% of business-to-consumer marketers have acquired customers through Facebook. (Marketing Tech Blog, 2014)

If your brand is targeting consumers, the odds are in your favor that you will find customers on social media.


The most common type of content posted by brands on Facebook is photos (75%), followed by links (10%), statuses (6%), albums (4%), video (4%), and other (1%). (Marketing Tech Blog, 2014)

Do you want to create eye-catching photos for your social media campaigns? Use the HubSpot photo editor to spice up your photos, or you can use a free tool such as Canva.


The top 5 reasons why people follow brands on social media are; promotions and discounts, latest products information, customer service, entertaining content, and ability to offer feedback. (Marketing Tech Blog, 2014)

There should obviously be a balance between self-promotion and discussion with your social media posts, but the top reason people follow your brand is to stay updated on what you’re offering — don’t be afraid to show them.


social media user statistics
Social media user statistics.

The average Twitter user follows 5 or more brands. (Marketing Tech Blog, 2014)

In the early days of social media, people were hesitant to mix brands and personal relationships on their timeline. However, Twitter users have always been more loyal to brands than Facebook users.


83.8% of luxury brands have a presence on Pinterest. (Marketing Tech Blog, 2014)

Pinterest users love to create boards dedicated to dream homes, dream vacations, and anything else that wish they had — such as luxury items.

Related post: 11 Updates to Starbuck’s Creativity and Innovation

Snapchat’s Daily Video Views Have Increased 400% year over year. (Bloomberg, 2016)

This presents one of the biggest opportunities to stand out, as Snapchat ads are viewed 1 million times a day, and its video views are now bigger than Facebook’s.


eBay is the most engaging brand on Twitter. (Dotrising, 2015)

If you’re going to study a brand to see what works for social engagement — learn from the best.

50% of B2B buyers use LinkedIn when making purchase decisions. (LinkedIn)

LinkedIn has always been the place for connecting professionals, so why not leverage your brand too? Chances are your prospects on LinkedIn are even more qualified.


There were over 4.4 million videos uploaded directly to Facebook in February 2016, generating over 199 billion views. (ReelSEO, 2017)

Video marketing is a powerful tool that personalizes your brand and increases conversions. And with the advent of Live Video, that trend is only going to continue.

A significant 61% of marketers plan on using live video services such as Facebook Live and Periscope. (Social Media Examiner, 2017)

And 69% want to learn more about live video.


Top brands on Instagram see a per-follower engagement rate of 4.21% which is 58 times higher than on Facebook and 120 times higher than on Twitter. (Hootsuite, 2016

Instagram has become a powerful platform for marketers, and its potential cannot be overlooked any longer.


In 2015 Facebook influenced 52 percent of consumers’ online and offline purchases, up from 36 percent in 2014(The Drum, 2015)

This shows the importance for retailers to manage the social media channels which will have the biggest direct impact on purchase behavior.

95% of online adults aged 18-34 are most likely follow a brand via social networking. (MarketingSherpa, 2015)

Where does your audience lie? Think about your personas and see where they are most likely to follow your brand.


71% of consumers who have had a good social media service experience with a brand is likely to recommend it to others. (Ambassador)

We are in an era where the user experience is king, so use your social media as a customer service tool to increase brand engagement and win new customers. These next few stats will prove it…

30% of millennials engage with a brand on social at least once a month. (SproutSocial, 2017)

If this is who you’re targeting, regular updates that pop up in your customer’s news feeds can go a long way.

89% of social media messages to brands go ignored. (SproutSocial, 2016)

This is a BIG no-no. People are looking to connect with brands before, after, and during their purchase. Create brand loyalty by engaging back with your audience. You want them to interact with you and your brand, so it’s only fair.


There is a total of 1.3 billion Twitter accounts, but only 320 million are active. (Business Insider, 2015)

While we don’t want to say Twitter might be on the downslope, especially with them rolling out a new ad program, Twitter’s market share is teetering. Reddit has occasionally passed Twitter as the number 3 social networking site in the top 10 platforms based on market share. We will let you draw your own conclusions.

YouTube (and even just YouTube mobile) reaches more 18-34 and 18-49 year-olds than any cable network in the U.S. (YouTube, 2017)

Video content has gone from nice-to-have to MUST have.

68 percent of Instagram users engage with brands regularly, and Instagram has 58 times more engagement per follower than Facebook. (SelfStartr, 2016).

The Instagram trend isn’t going anywhere as other industries (besides retail) start using Instagram as a part of their social media marketing. Oh, and the most Instagrammed food, in case you were wondering, is pizza.

More to learn: Best Facebook Ads … 8 Secret Design Factors for Successful Marketing


The bottom line

To be effective in this new era, we as marketers need to see our jobs differently. No more just focusing on metrics like clicks, video views or social media shares. We must successfully integrate our function with other business functions to create entire brand experiences that serve the customer all the way through their experiences throughout the business.


We can do better. Much better. But first, we need to stop seeing ourselves as crafters of clever brand messages and become creators of positive brand experiences.


There can never be enough focus on continuous improvement in social media marketing, independent of how well the business is doing. It seems we all are looking to take our success to a new level. This is an excellent time to make a statement with their marketing. Changing before you have to is always a good idea.




Need some help in capturing more customers from your social media marketing or advertising? Creative ideas to help the differentiation with your customers?


Call today for a FREE consultation or a FREE quote. Learn about some options to scope your job.

Call Mike at 607-725-8240.


All you get is what you bring to the fight. And that fight gets better every day you learn and apply new ideas.


When things are not what you want them to be, what’s most important is your next step. Call today.


Test. Learn. Improve. Repeat.


Are you devoting enough energy innovating your social media strategy?


Do you have a lesson about making your advertising better you can share with this community? Have any questions or comments to add in the section below?

 Mike Schoultz is the founder of Digital Spark Marketing, a digital marketing and customer service agency. With 40 years of business experience, he writes about topics to help improve the performance of small business. Find him on G+FacebookTwitter, and LinkedIn.



Digital Spark Marketing will stretch your thinking and your ability to adapt to change.  We also provide some fun and inspiration along the way. Call us for a free quote today. You will be amazed how reasonable we will be.


More reading from Digital Spark Marketing’s Library:

Instagram Stats … Lots to Learn From Current Data

Best Facebook Ads … 8 Secret Design Factors for Successful Marketing

Social Media Platforms … The Magic Every Content Marketer Needs


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Social Media Statistics … Lots to Learn From Current Data