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Daily Twitter Users Double, but Adoption is Still Slow


New research from Pew shows that Twitter hasn’t gained many users over the past year, but the users they have are now Tweeting more often.

The total number of users represents only about 15% of the adult, online population. Last year, Pew clocked this number at 13%, growth that’s hardly worth mentioning.

On the other hand, daily usage numbers (those who use Twitter on a “typical day”) have doubled since last year, and quadrupled since 2010. Don’t get too excited, though, because that number is only 8% of the online population.

I find these numbers to be odd and depressing. I’m a big Twitter fan and it seems to me that everyone I deal with has a Twitter account. I suppose that’s because my circles generally include techy people, marketing people, entertainment industry folks and writers. Maybe if I hung around with a different kind of a crowd, Twitter wouldn’t be as prominent.

Still, with all the press we see on how people get their breaking news from Twitter, that 8% number seems awfully low.

Pew breaks down the demographics to show that Twitter usage is higher with African American’s, young adults, and urban and suburban dwellers. With the exception of young adults, Pew says there have been no major changes in any of the original Twitter demographics. In other words, it’s found its audience and that’s pretty much that.

So here you are, Mr and Ms Marketer, blithely Twittering away every day in hopes of increasing your bottom line, but is it worth it to reach an average of only 15% of the online population?

Here’s what I’d like to see. I’d like to see Twitter stats broken down by industry or interest. Do skateboarders Tweet more or less than car enthusiasts or ballroom dance fans? Does this kind of information exist? For me, that would be the key to deciding whether or not Tweeting was worth the time.

I suppose, in the end, Tweeting isn’t that time consuming (especially if you use a service that lets you pre-schedule Tweets) and there’s always that chance that you’ll strike a chord with an influencer in your market.

Have your feelings about Twitter changed in the past year? We’d like to hear your thoughts both personally and professionally.