Survey: Where millennials hang out online

The author conducts an informal survey of her peers and finds out a few things about Generation Y—including one revelation that might surprise you.

In a fast-paced environment and with the increasing pace of technologies’ evolution, it’s hard to keep up with millennials. I polled my network of millennials to gain some insight of where marketers can reach us.

Not only have I surveyed where you can find us, I also pooled information of what we want from your advertisements. (I stopped the polling at 100 millennials from my own social networks in order to get a clear number.)

Let’s start by seeing where we are:

This graphic shows which platforms millennials use daily. Think of this the “market share” of a millennial’s social media activity. Facebook owns 46 percent of our daily activity, while Twitter owns 29 percent.

This was formulated by having millennials rate how much they used a specific platform (daily, weekly, monthly, never). This is aggregated from only showing the daily activity. This is not saying that only 46 percent of millennials log in to Facebook every day. This is saying that out of the nine platforms polled, 46 percent of the daily activity is on Facebook, 29 percent on Twitter, etc. Do you think this activity is surprising?

Though some of this may come as a surprise, this information will most likely change within the next six months. Why? Our interests, what’s available, and what we have time for are all constantly changing. Here are some key takeaways:

  • We spend almost half our time on Facebook, which means Facebook ads may gain the most impressions from millennials.
  • Twitter is where we spend the second-most amount of time. Maybe promoted tweets are in the future for marketers trying to reach us.
  • Pinterest is a new area for millennials, and it has been a hot topic (at least in my networks). This “virtual pinboard” lets us view and share on another level. More on Pinterest will be coming in the next couple of weeks. Stay tuned!
  • Google+ stills owns very little of our interest and time. If you’re trying to reach us, brand pages on Google+ is not how to do it.

So, now that you know where we are going to be (and where you should market to us), let’s talk about what we want to see in advertising:

Surprise! Some of us don’t hate your advertisements! To the contrary, more millennials like discount offers than dislike the advertisements. Now that you know what we want from your advertisements and where we are going to be, you are one step closer to reaching us!

Sarah Schultz is the Social Media Coordinator for Dow Jones & Company. She blogs at, where a version of this article originally appeared.

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