Why are 70% of Snapchat users female?

zinc tank online segmentation survey shows the bigger picture 

socialzers

Snapchat, a wildly popular sharing-app that enables users to send photos and video clips that disappear a few seconds after they’re opened, has been dominating the headlines worldwide, and not just in the tech community.

On November 14th 2013, the big story was about Snapchat’s two twenty-something owners turning down a reported $3 US billion buyout offer from Facebook. One week later, Snapchat founder and CEO Evan Spiegel was quoted in a Wall Street Journal article, saying that 70% of Snapchat’s users are women.

This revelation comes as a surprise to many, the prevailing wisdom being that Snapchat’s core audience is teens and tweens. But if you have been following zinc tank’s online segmentation research, now in its sixth year of tracking Canadian social media users, the logic behind the app’s appeal to females – and the brilliance of the Snapchat concept in aligning with them – is plain for all to see.

Source: The Bridge - zinc tank online survey (Feb 2013) N=1,200

Source: The Bridge – zinc tank online survey (Feb 2013) N=1,200

The following are drawn from the most recent survey (February 2013):

  • Women comprise 52% of Zinc tank’s “socializers” segment, which is the most socially active of social network users – for example, spending an average of 10.6 hours weekly on Facebook, the highest level of all online segments
  • 43% of female Socializers are between 18 and 34 years of age
  • 36% of Socializers (male and female combined) are single

Socializers rank the following as among their most important online activities:

  • Staying in touch with friends: very important (60%), somewhat important (34%)
  • Online chat: very important (47%), somewhat important (41%)
  • Posting pictures: Very important (21%), somewhat important (45%)
  • Dating: very important (7%), somewhat important (17%)

Snapchat has in effect triangulated at least three important characteristics of the online female: They are predominantly young single adults; they are heavy Facebook fans; and they like to stay in touch with their friends via email, online chat and, yes, photo-sharing…

Snapchat continues to be a major player as its business model evolves. However, many continue to question the legitimacy of its offering. Still, it is a preferred platform for teens and young adults exploring personal boundaries of communication with hope that what happens on Snapchat stays there.

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