Not “cool” but teens still prefer Facebook

A new report from Forrester Research, released this week, debunks a commonly-held belief in marketing circles — that teenagers are fleeing Facebook.

Yes, their parents might also be using Facebook and, yes, it may not be very cool. But they still use Facebook and, according to the report, they continue to use it more intensely than any other social site.


Teens use Facebook despite thinking it not as "cool" as YouTube, Snapchat or Instagram.

YouTube is “cooler”, but Facebook is used more heavily.  Source: Forrester’s North American Consumer Technographics Youth Survey 2015.

Fears that teens would leave Facebook in their droves were first sparked by former Facebook CFO David Ebersman’s comment in October 2013 that the company had seen “a decrease in daily users partly among younger teens.”

This year’s Forrester’s North American Consumer Technographics survey polled US youth aged 12-17 who were monthly users of 10 social media platforms (including YouTube, Snapchat, Instagram, Pinterest and Google+).

For teens, Facebook lags behind other social apps in terms of coolness.

What do teens think “cooler” than Facebook? Pretty much everything apart from  Pinterest, Google+ and Tumblr.  Source: Forrester’s North American Consumer Technographics Youth Survey 2015.

The study found that while only 65% of teens considered the social network “cool,” it had more “hyper usage” than any other social platform. Add to that, about 61% of those polled said it’s the social network they use the most.

The study’s findings supported those from a similar 2014 Forrester survey, but nearly half (47%) admitted to using Facebook more this year than last year. Nearly four in five teens (78%) said they now use Facebook at least once a month — more than Instagram (55%), Twitter (50%) and Snapchat (45%).

Why should you care?

Instagram usage appears to be on the rise, with new advertising options likely to interest NZ marketers. But don’t forget Facebook. We suspect NZ teens to be similar to those in the US — they may not particularly like Facebook but, so long as their friends are using it, they will too.

Click here for more search marketing news.


The latest news about web marketing, SEO, PPC Advertising & Web Analytics. But only the stuff that matters from a New Zealand perspective. Delivered to your inbox each Monday.

If you found this useful, please tell your friends.

About the Author Jeremy Templer

Jeremy is a Partner and Senior Consultant at SureFire. Jeremy has been working in search since 1996, when he joined the Australian search engine, LookSmart. After relocating to San Francisco, he was instrumental in the development of the company’s paid search ad platform. At analytics company Coremetrics (now owned by IBM) he established an in-house search agency managing campaigns for Coremetrics clients such as Macy’s, Bass Pro and Lands End. At Acxiom he managed members of the pioneering SEO firm Marketleap and worked with clients such as Capital One, American General Finance and Kaiser Health. Joining SureFire in 2009, he is the head of Paid Search Advertising and oversees the delivery of AdWords and other PPC campaigns. He also helps clients make sense of their website data.