Facebook has seen a massive downturn of teens as older audiences boom on the world's largest social network.
Teenage members in the U.S. have plummeted 25.3% in the past three years, according to marketing firm iStrategyLabs.
"The teenage demographic is leaving," says DJ Saul, chief marketing officer at iStrategyLabs.
market researcher used Facebook's own self-service advertising tool to
report the changes in Facebook's audience since 2011. Facebook's ad tool
allows advertisers to target age groups and other categories, offering
data on Facebook's audience.
While teens on Facebook in January of
2014 fell to 9.8 million from 13.1 million in January of 2011,
according to the data, those 55 years old or older jumped to 28 million
in 2014, an 80.4% increase.
The next largest growth segment for
Facebook came from those 35 to 54 years old, according to iStrategyLabs,
a 41.4% jump from 2011, followed by those 25 to 34 years old, up 32.6%
The social-networking giant has over 1.2 billion users.
David Ebersman on the company's third-quarter earnings call in October
warned of a slide within Facebook's teen user base, sending shares
tumbling in after-hours trading as Wall Street mulled the meaning for
Facebook in November offered to buy Snapchat, the
disappearing photo-messaging service popular with teens, for $3 billion
but was declined.
"Today's 13- to 17-year-olds are not adopting
Facebook as much as they were in 2011. They are going to Snapchat,
Twitter, Instagram and even messaging-based applications," says DJ Saul,
chief marketing officer at iStrategyLabs.
Facebook acquired Instagram for $1 billion in 2012 in a bid to capture its young photo-sharing audience.
Facebook spokeswoman Genevieve Grdina declined to comment.