Using E-Score Brand, we check-in on the big five social media platforms and their buzz status (positive or negative) as attention shifts to the second half of 2022.
All five platforms are facing challenges when it comes to digital advertising in these uncertain times. In addition, recent headlines show Twitter and Elon Musk are in a battle royale, and Instagram is going all in on Reels to copy TikTok, and then it’s not, and then it is. But in this highly competitive race to keep users engaged, what is the reality in how users themselves describe the value of these social networks? What kind of buzz are they generating for advertisers to get excited about?
Instagram keeps Meta Platforms relevant with young consumers: With Facebook struggling to keep users active and engaged, particularly among younger audiences, the opposite can be said about Instagram. Instagram posts a double-digit Buzz Score for both Gen Z and Millennials. In a major power shift among younger audiences, nearly half of Gen Z now prefers Instagram (and TikTok) for search over Google*.
The battle for Gen Z is a three-horse race: TikTok seems to garner the most headlines when it comes to success among the Gen Z audience, but Snapchat and Instagram are generating equally strong positive buzz among this in-demand demo in their own stated ratings.
Snapchat Plus: 2022 saw Snapchat become one of the first platforms to add a paid subscription option, Snapchat Plus, that unlocks premium features for users for a monthly fee of $3.99. This generated positive buzz among users and provided Snapchat with a source of positive cash-flow. This will be increasingly important as the company navigates a major restructuring that has already seen a 20% reduction in staff. Paid subscriptions are clearly the future for social media brands with Meta Platforms already announcing plans for a paid subscription offering as well for Facebook, Instagram, and WhatsApp.
Help wanted: Twitter is the only social media brand to post a negative Buzz Score across all three generation groups. Time will tell if the news around the on again/off again sale to Elon Musk further impacts the Buzz Score going forward.
1. Instagram Profile
With Instagram posting a positive Buzz Score across all three generations, what are so me factors contributing to the brand’s broad momentum.
The following are shared positive attributes for Instagram across all three generations (% above average shown):
Instagram is most entertaining among Gen X consumers, posting a score 16 points above the average. Here are some comments from Gen X consumers about the brand:
- “A simple, entertaining and creative site”
- “Better than Snapchat”
- “Everyone has an Instagram account”
At 11 points above the average, Instagram is seen as a style leader among Gen Z thanks to a strong social commerce environment that seems built for product discovery and allows fashion brands and influencers to showcase the latest trends. Here are some comments from Gen Z consumers about the brand:
- “A community of creators”
- “Celebrities and influencers”
The following are shared positive perceptions of Instagram across all three generations (% above average shown):
Instagram’s halo effect: With all three generations posting above average scores for the statement “Is popular with people I know” – Instagram is able to generate buzz through success in building a strong sense of brand community.
Instagram through their parent brand Meta has committed to building towards a better world with initiatives and solutions that combat bullying, are inclusive, zero-carbon focused, and sustainable.
2. Twitter Profile
Twitter seems to be in a constant state of flux due to the Elon Musk drama, user toxicity, censorship concerns, and making the platform more accessible in general. It’s no surprise that Twitter has negative Buzz Scores across all three generations.
The following are shared negative attributes for Twitter across all three generations (% above average shown):
What is Twitter doing to jump start the brand? Twitter is responding with a series of new feature releases to make the platform more engaging, including a visual upgrade through Tweet Tiles, new link previews, and the ability to private tweet select users with Circles. Adding an edit button has long been requested and the company has unveiled that this feature is on the way. Twitter is also jumping into the podcast game, adding this popular form of content to the platform (45% of Twitter users also listen to podcasts monthly*).
Twitter announced the merging of their toxic content and spam teams in an effort to address concerns that the company was not taking the issue of bots and security vulnerabilities seriously. This is a common complaint mentioned across all three generations as seen below (taken from open-ends):
- (Gen Z) “Twitter has great quality uploads but a toxic user base”
- (Millennials) “Elon Musk drama, bots, censorship”
- (Gen X) “chaos and misinformation. For people who speak before they think”
With E-Score Brand you can further examine these big-name platforms and their abilities to keep users engaged in this highly competitive social media world. It is an effective tool that helps develop a clear understanding of how platforms such as Twitter, Instagram, and Snapchat implement unique elements to attract different target demographics.
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