Facebook’s Growth and Demographic Shifts

Facebook Platform was simply a genius move by the social network, which had seen growth since opening up to general registration. But since Platform was announced, I and many of the people I know have seen scores of invitations to connect. LinkedIn was apparently feeling the pressure and so announced a couple of weeks ago that it would be allowing third-party developers to build applications for the site — as has MySpace.

From comScore, here’s the changed demographic makeup of the site:

Facebook demographics

I’m in the last category. 🙂

Look how the traffic has grown massively in a year — from 14 to 26 million users, with most of the growth in older and younger (than college-aged) groups. This huge user base has already made the difference for some applications utilizing the Facebook Platform for exposure and distribution.

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Related: A survey from Parks & Assoc. argues that users have little loyalty to particular social networks. I haven’t seen the report so can’t dispute the conclusion. Certainly Friendster wouldn’t dispute it. 🙂

I didn’t scrutinize the comScore data, but took it at face value (so to speak). I got an email pointing me to this post, which is highly critical of the numbers presented and say they are simply wrong. Specifially the idea that there were 5+ million 35+ year-old users a year ago is implausible says the author.


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