Contrary to the pattern of growth for almost every other Internet phenomenon, Twitter has been largely ignored by Teenagers. This could be put down the amount of time they spend on Twitter’s social media rivals Facebook and MySpace. Whilst Facebook has been used by a broad spectrum of people including those much more senior, MySpace itself has been almost exclusively a young person’s place.
But according to new research from ComScore, young people are now signing up with Twitter at a ‘breakneck pace’. Whilst overall Twitter users have streaked past 50 million it is the under 18 age group that is growing at the fastest rate of all.
Twitter has been mostly adopted so far by the older age segments, since news about Twitter was mostly from a business or political context.. This shift in growth to younger people has been largely attributed to the increased use of Twitter by celebrities who have a large number of young fans.
ComScore analyst Andrew Lipsman said: “I think that during the early adopter period back in 2008, Twitter was first gaining notoriety in business settings and via news outlets — particularly on CNN, which resulted in an older-skewing early adopter profile.
“But as Twitter began to filter more into the mainstream, along with it came a culture of celebrity as Shaq, Britney Spears and Ashton Kutcher joined the ranks of the Twitterati.”
ComScore have said that as more celebrities get into Tweeting, more young people will adopt the platform, in an “impending youth invasion”.
“Twitter is most definitely popular among younger users and I don’t see that changing anytime soon. They are fuelling its continued growth and pushing it ever closer to achieving critical mass.
“If that happens, it will be the first example I can think of where the younger demographics were not the critical early adopters of a new internet technology yet still played a vital role in its adoption curve. But it won’t be the last.” said Lipsman.
Why have you taken up Twitter – what was the straw that broke the camel’s back? And if you haven’t then why not so far? What would make you change your mind? Leave us a comment below.