Economic Divide? Affluent Internet Users More Likely to Use Facebook, Lower Income Users on MySpace

Americans using social networking sites like Facebook, MySpace or LinkedIn are generally more  affluent and urban than the average American. Yet when Nielsen Claritas overlaid a panel of over 200,000 participants with their 66 demographic and behavioral segmentation scheme, they found some significant differences in user’s social networking service preferences based on their economic status.

  • Facebook users have a largely upscale profile. The top third of lifestyle segments relative to affluence were 25% more likely to use Facebook than those in the those in the lower third.
  • The bottom third segments related to affluence are 37% more likely to use MySpace than those in the top third
  • Users of Facebook were also much more likely to use LinkedIn, a network geared towards business and professional networking, than those who use MySpace

The research also found that bloggers and tweeters aren’t necessarily more affluent, but they do live in more urban areas such as New York, Los Angeles, San Francisco, and Chicago. Penetration rates of the top two most visited blogging platforms, Blogger and WordPress, and Twitter show that Nielsen’s 12 Urban lifestyle segments are more likely to blog and tweet than their 22 Town & Rural segments.



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