Ann Mack

Parents are Facebook’s biggest power users

Think people hate baby photos on Facebook? Think again

Facebook may once have been the domain of kegger photos, but the site’s college years are now firmly behind it.

Fittingly, the social network has moved on to the next stage of life: parenthood. New research released by Facebook shows young parents are the site’s most active group of users, over-indexing on every activity except one – the check-in.

New mothers are especially active, according to Ann Mack, head of content and activation at Facebook’s research arm, Facebook IQ. On average, new mothers start their first Facebook session of the day at 4:00 a.m. and reach peak activity at 7:00 a.m.

“Feeding time is Facebook time,” Mack explained. “For brands, this is an opportunity to reach [parents] when they can’t reach them elsewhere – and during a moment that was previously unavailable to them.”

Mack, who presented findings about parents’ use of Facebook to a group of Canadian advertisers at Facebook IQ Live in Toronto last week, added that new moms in Canada share twice as much as other users. They also share three times more photos and four times more video than other users.

While some may complain about the proliferation of baby photos on Facebook, kid-related content is a hit for parents. Facebook’s internal data shows parenting-related posts receive 37% more interaction from parents’ relatives and 47% more interaction from parents’ friends than general posts.

Mack recommended brands looking to reach the hyper-active group of Facebook users create bite-sized, image-heavy content designed for parents who are always on the go.

Given parents are often stressed and tired, she says there is also an opportunity for brands to provide information and advice that’s specially curated.

She added that brands shouldn’t just be targeting moms – Facebook’s research showed 69% of dads on the site believe they contribute as much or more to their children’s lives as their co-parents. (It’s worth noting only 29% of moms agreed with the statement.)

Because so many dads see themselves as active parents, Mack says there’s a big opportunity for brands to talk to fathers about parenting.

How millennials use Instagram in Canada

Parents may be the power users on Facebook, but millennials still account for the lion’s share of activity on Instagram.

The Facebook-owned app recently partnered with Ipsos Canada on a report, also presented at Facebook IQ Live, that shows how Instagram’s core demo uses the social network.

The study, Canadian Millennials, showed positive results for brands hoping to connect with young consumers on the platform. Almost half (48%) of millennial users follow a brand, and 74% take some form of action after being inspired by a post including shopping (23%), visiting a website (37%), searching online (39%) and telling a friend (47%).

It also showed a slight difference in young millennials 18 to 24 and mature millennials 25 to 34. Young millennials use Instagram largely for humorous and whimsical content, while mature millennials use it for “nuggets of inspiration.”

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