The greying of Facebook

Is Facebook on its way to becoming the next Yahoo? Once again, the fastest growing segment on the service is older users. Inside Facebook is reporting that “The fastest growing demographic on Facebook is still women over 55 – there are now nearly 1.5 million of them active on Facebook each month.”

 

Facebook audience growth - source: InsideFacebook.com

Facebook audience growth - source: InsideFacebook.com

It makes sense that FB has saturated the younger demo, so growth should have to come from older demographics. I find it interesting that women are leading the charge, but I’d imagine it is because they are seeking to keep in touch with their children.

Here are some questions I have around how the greying of Facebook will change the service:

  1. What will this mean for how families communicate? I’d imagine that family conversations have different needs than than college buddies posting pictures at the keg party. 
  2. Will kids want to shield their parents from some of their activities? Probably. How can this be achieved without having them leave Facebook for a more private service?
  3. Is this going to drive smart phone usage by older adults? As in, will they want to access FB from a mobile device?
  4. Will different FB apps become popular? I can’t imagine that too many adults want to give each other virtual drinks. By adults, I mean people in their 50′s. People like me definitely want to give each other virtual drinks.
  5. Advertising – This seems to continue to be FB’s preferred revenue model. Older users tend to be richer users. Will a different set of advertisers migrate to the system? I mean, will anyone start advertising on Facebook? Hard to say. 

Would love readers’ opinions.

Author: Healy Jones

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