And as you might expect, younger users drive the discussion on the platform – though you likely wouldn’t have guessed that they were quite this influential.
As Twitter notes, nearly half of all of the Tweets that were sent between May 2020 and May 2021 came from users aged between 16 and 24.
That runs somewhat counter to the perception that Twitter is being increasingly used by politically-motivated groups to drive their messaging – but then again, Twitter is also known for its more left-leaning movements and focus, which would align with younger, more progressive viewpoints on many key issues.
But in some ways, that may also lessen the value that some put in Twitter trends, as it’s primarily young users, and not necessarily representative of the majority. This data shows that it’s increasingly very young demographics that are engaging with tweets, which points to rising trends, but may also, again, not be representative of broader opinion.
Though, in a marketing context, driving trends is what we’re most interested in, and Twitter says that some 70% of Gen Z users come to the app to learn about new products, while they’re also active in sharing their opinions on the same.
“Just as important, Twitter is where Gen Z comes to gauge whether brands are keeping up with the cultural and societal conversations happening around us, with many saying they use the platform to comment on how brands are connecting with social issues they care about.”
Which is a key consideration for reaching young audiences, with various research indicating that young consumers increasingly want to see brands take a stand on social issues, and voice their support for key movements.
Twitter also notes that young users are looking to interact with ad campaigns, particularly those that invite participation.
“They were especially engaged when there was an element of the campaign they could riff on – something meme-worthy. In one campaign, in particular, Gen Z dominated engagement, sending half of all campaign-related Tweets.”
Which is also a big element in the appeal of TikTok, providing a means for users to interact with the brand message, and provide their own take, which then connects them into a broader conversation, and can facilitate more exposure and community.
Based on these findings, Twitter advises that brands should take a participatory approach to their campaign creation, while they should also ensure that they stand by their words, and drive ongoing action through advocacy pledges.
“Sustain the conversation and connect with them whenever the opportunity calls for it.”
That interactive, community-based approach aligns with the habitual behaviors of Gen Z, who, again, increasingly expect to be able to take part, and create their own content based on campaigns and trends.
Social media has given everyone a platform to share their voice and experience, and failing to utilize that is missing a major opportunity of the format. And now, young users who’ve grown up with social platforms, are looking to actively engage, in everything.
The data here shows that this is a key opportunity, worth factoring into your approach.
You can check out Twitter’s full Gen Z research here.