Over 50s twittering away happily

Twice as many 50-64-year-olds than 18-24-year-olds in the UK use Twitter, according to research from Nielsen Online.

Audience figures showed 50-64-year-old users account for 22% of the entire Twitter audience, compared with just 11% of 18-24-year-olds.

The biggest share of the audience is 35-49-year-olds (33%), followed by 50-64-year-olds (22%) and 25-34-year-olds (22%). A year ago the share of 25-34-year-olds using the site was 5% higher.

The figures also revealed the number of users in the under-18s market and over-65s each accounts for 6% of the overall audience.

The age group that grew fastest in unique visits over the past year was 50-64 year-olds, up by 1,926%.

The Nielsen Online UK figures contrast with US research by ComScore released last week that found the audience on the site had skewed younger as it has grown in the past year.

Alex Burmaster, Nielsen Online communications director for the UK and EMEA, said, “There’s a feeling that social media is driven by youth but Twitter is a whole generation up in terms of who’s using it. We also find there’s a preoccupation with targeting younger users even though older consumers are less fickle, more loyal and have more disposable income. Twitter offers a good opportunity to target this audience.”

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