Facebook's Teen Users Down 25% During the Past 3 Years

A new study finds Facebook's teen problem way be worse than investors previously thought.

Jan 15, 2014 at 11:10AM

A new study shows Facebook's (NASDAQ:FB) teen problem in the U.S. may be worse than previously thought. The study from iStrategyLabs shows self-reported teen users have fallen by 25% during the past three years, while self-reported users in college are down nearly 60%! Read on to find out more.

Facebook Photo

The question of teens leaving Facebook has been a hot topic this year, as multiple surveys have shown teens losing interest in Facebook. Investors are worried that this could be the start of a larger trend. How worried? Facebook shares were up 15% after reporting better-than-expected earnings in Q3, but gave back those gains after Facebook CFO David Ebersman acknowledged Facebook is becoming unpopular with teens.

 [W]e did see a decrease in daily users specifically among younger teens. We won't typically call out such granular data, especially when it's of questionable statistical significance given the lack of precision of our age estimates for younger users, but we wanted to share this with you now since we get a lot of questions about teens.

Ebersman didn't lay out any specific data; however, he did add, "We are pleased that we remain close to fully penetrated among teens in the U.S." Close and falling may have been a better description.G

Source: iStrategyLabs, Facebook Social Ads Platform 

Many surveys have found that teens are leaving Facebook because their parents are now on there. CFO Ebersman has said before about teen usage that, "This is a hard issue for us to measure, because self-reported age data is unreliable for younger users." However, Facebook is nearly 10 years old, and plenty of adults were on it three years ago. While some of the decline may be attributable to more kids lying about their ages, it's hard to believe that it could account for the entire drop.

What are teens using?
Teens are fleeing to platforms which provide more privacy control where their parents can't get access. Twitter appears to be the big winner according to a study from Piper Jaffray; however, Instagram, Snapchat, WhatsApp, and Kik are also popular and gaining.

Facebook is aware of the disruptive threats that these platforms provide. The company bought Instagram for $1 billion in April 2012, and offered $3 billion to Snapchat, which Snapchat turned down. Other social networks that could be a threat include Yahoo!'s Tumblr, and Google's Google+, now that all Youtube accounts are Google+ accounts.

Is it all bad?
There's still a lot of  positives for Facebook. Overall users are up 22% in the U.S. during the past three years. Facebook has established itself in mobile advertising, which is a large and growing percentage of how people access the Internet. Those users are also more likely to be older, which means more spending power, and less tech savvy -- which means they will see ads. According to Fool analyst Adrian Campos  2014 will be a great year for Facebook, even after rising more than 100% in 2013.

Stocks for ultimate growth
They said it couldn't be done. But David Gardner has proved them wrong, time, and time, and time again, with stock returns like 926%, 2,239%, and 4,371%. In fact, just recently, one of his favorite stocks became a 100-bagger. And he's ready to do it again. You can uncover his scientific approach to crushing the market and his carefully chosen six picks for ultimate growth instantly, because he's making this premium report free for you today. Click here now for access.

Dan Dzombak can be found on Twitter @DanDzombak or on his Facebook page, DanDzombak. He has no position in any stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool recommends Facebook, Google, Twitter, and Yahoo!. The Motley Fool owns shares of Facebook and Google. Try any of our Foolish newsletter services free for 30 days. We Fools may not all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.

4 in 5 Americans Are Ignoring Buffett's Warning

Don't be one of them.

Jun 12, 2015 at 5:01PM

Admitting fear is difficult.

So you can imagine how shocked I was to find out Warren Buffett recently told a select number of investors about the cutting-edge technology that's keeping him awake at night.

This past May, The Motley Fool sent 8 of its best stock analysts to Omaha, Nebraska to attend the Berkshire Hathaway annual shareholder meeting. CEO Warren Buffett and Vice Chairman Charlie Munger fielded questions for nearly 6 hours.
The catch was: Attendees weren't allowed to record any of it. No audio. No video. 

Our team of analysts wrote down every single word Buffett and Munger uttered. Over 16,000 words. But only two words stood out to me as I read the detailed transcript of the event: "Real threat."

That's how Buffett responded when asked about this emerging market that is already expected to be worth more than $2 trillion in the U.S. alone. Google has already put some of its best engineers behind the technology powering this trend. 

The amazing thing is, while Buffett may be nervous, the rest of us can invest in this new industry BEFORE the old money realizes what hit them.

KPMG advises we're "on the cusp of revolutionary change" coming much "sooner than you think."

Even one legendary MIT professor had to recant his position that the technology was "beyond the capability of computer science." (He recently confessed to The Wall Street Journal that he's now a believer and amazed "how quickly this technology caught on.")

Yet according to one J.D. Power and Associates survey, only 1 in 5 Americans are even interested in this technology, much less ready to invest in it. Needless to say, you haven't missed your window of opportunity. 

Think about how many amazing technologies you've watched soar to new heights while you kick yourself thinking, "I knew about that technology before everyone was talking about it, but I just sat on my hands." 

Don't let that happen again. This time, it should be your family telling you, "I can't believe you knew about and invested in that technology so early on."

That's why I hope you take just a few minutes to access the exclusive research our team of analysts has put together on this industry and the one stock positioned to capitalize on this major shift.

Click here to learn about this incredible technology before Buffett stops being scared and starts buying!

David Hanson owns shares of Berkshire Hathaway and American Express. The Motley Fool recommends and owns shares of Berkshire Hathaway, Google, and Coca-Cola.We Fools don't all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.

©1995-2014 The Motley Fool. All rights reserved. | Privacy/Legal Information

Compare Brokers