Gen Z: Instagram is Most Important; WhatsApp Is on the Horizon

By 1stFive Archives
Cover image for  article: Gen Z:  Instagram is Most Important; WhatsApp Is on the Horizon

Instagram, Facebook, YouTube and WhatsApp dominate the social media landscape among young tech-savvy Millennials and Gen Z, with Twitter, Snapchat, Facetime, Pinterest and other social tools battling for a place in their social ecosystem, according to a new study commissioned by and conducted by AnchorFree.  Instagram tops the list of 13 social media channels identified as most important to those born between 1996-2000 and post-2005, while YouTube is ranked as the top social channel by those born between 2001-2004, with Instagram ranked second (see data chart below).  The June 2017 U.S. survey among 1,019 tech-savvy young people clearly established Instagram as the favorite, with Facebook ranked first among those born pre-1990.  The study establishes WhatsApp as a highly competitive outlier in the social media ecosystem among the technologically sophisticated AnchorFree user base.

In addition to sharing content, Gen Z relies on social media platforms for texting, video chatting and active communication experiences.  This requires connectivity and speed.  AnchorFree, the world's largest Internet security application, offers a proprietary virtual private network (VPN) -- technology popular among Gen Z'ers, a generation that's been using VPNs for the past three years to access Wi-Fi while at school to avoid firewalls and data charges.  The tech-advanced Gen Z cohort has learned to rely on a VPN wherever they are (school, mall, Starbucks, even at home). Users were asked to complete the five-question survey prior to accessing the VPN for their secure and private browsing.

The results of the MediaVillage survey suggest that Facebook Messenger (named among the top-three social channels by 24% of respondents), Twitter (20%), BuzzFeed (13%), iMessage (9%), Snapchat (8%), LinkedIn (6%), GroupMe (5%), Facetime (4%) and Pinterest (4%) will be battling to gain a competitive foothold as Millennials grow older and Gen Z'ers are increasingly targeted as primary consumers by marketers.  Twitter, surprisingly, appears to be experiencing resurgent use by a younger cohort while the dominance of Facebook declines among those 22 and younger.

"AnchorFree's target-rich audience of five million Gen Z users in the U.S. allows advertisers to market to this elusive demographic on their smart phone during the school day [while] providing insight into their preferences, buying habits and opinions using our opt-in polls," commented Ken Ripley, the company's Vice President of Ad Sales.  With safe and unfettered access to content globally, AnchorFree's product Hotspot Shield has been downloaded over 550,000,000 times.

Click the social buttons above or below to share this story with your friends and colleagues.

The opinions and points of view expressed in this content are exclusively the views of the author and/or subject(s) and do not necessarily represent the views of, Inc. management or associated writers.

Copyright ©2022 MediaVillage, Inc. All rights reserved. By using this site you agree to the Terms of Use and Privacy Policy.