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27th June 2011 |  Written by Steph Goodman

The Over 50′s Are Flocking To Social Networking Sites

According to reports from research firm Nielsen, Facebook use among the over 50′s age group within the UK has risen faster than any other group.

The overall users of the social network grew 41% from 2009 and 2011, and among older users the figure was 84%. This trend was similar for Twitter, however unlike Facebook, the younger users have apparently drifted away. These findings have contradicted research that was recently published that stated Facebook’s popularity was diminishing in both the UK and the USA.

The latest research was commissioned by the UK Online Measurement Company (UCOM), which is funded by media and advertisers agencies. The new research found some interested stats. Facebook in May gained 26.8 million visits, making it more popular than all of Microsoft’s combined sites: MSN, Windows Live and Bing. The only site more popular was Google! Twitter also enjoyed a record month with 6.14 million unique visitors, a 34% increase on the previous month. At the same period of time, the number of women aged over 65 using the site grew by a massive 96%. LinkedIn also gained 3.59 million unique visitors in May, 57% up on the previous month.

If the reports are accurate, advertisers are going to welcome the growth, who will be keen to tap into this wealthy demographic. The younger audience that is under 25 are simply on the social networking sites to waste time and monetize badly. Clients are more interested in gaining a return on investment and an audience they can monetize such as the older demographics.

Although it’s not all fun and games, with the idea of more people on Facebook could spark fears among the younger users, wary of their parents popping up right before their eyes. There’s nowhere left to hide anymore….

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